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TV (The Book)

TV (The Book): Two Experts Pick the Greatest American Shows of All Time is a collection of essays written by television critics Alan Sepinwall and Matt Zoller Seitz. It was published in 2016. The main purpose of the book was to provide a canonical list of the top 100 greatest television programs in American history.


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  • TV (The Book): Two Experts Pick the Greatest American Shows of All Time
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  • Created October 23, 2022 by
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The Simpsons

1989

Set in Springfield, the average American town, the show focuses on the antics and everyday adventures of the Simpson family; Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie, as well as a virtual cast of thousands. Since the beginning, the series has been a pop culture icon, attracting hundreds of celebrities to guest star. The show has also made name for itself in its fearless satirical take on politics, media and American life in general.

The Sopranos

1999

New Jersey mob boss Tony Soprano deals with personal and professional issues in his home and business life that affect his mental state, leading him to seek professional psychiatric counseling.

The Wire

2002

Follows one single drug and homicide investigation throughout the length of an entire season. Centered on the drug culture of inner-city Baltimore, the series' storyline unfolds from the points of view of both the criminals lording the streets and the police officers determined to bring them down.

Cheers

1982

Sam, a former pitcher for the Boston Red Sox, owns and runs Cheers, a cozy bar in Boston. Somewhat snobby, beautiful and intelligent Diane -- forced to become a waitress when her fiance jilts her -- constantly bickers with Sam. Eventually, they fall in love. Several wacky characters make the bar their home-away-from-home, including sarcastic waitress Carla, beer-loving Norm and Boston letter carrier Cliff.

Breaking Bad

2008

When Walter White, a chemistry teacher, is diagnosed with Stage III cancer and given a prognosis of two years left to live, he chooses to enter a dangerous world of drugs and crime with the intent to secure his family's financial security.

Mad Men

2007

In 1960s New York, alpha male Don Draper struggles to stay on top of the heap in the high-pressure world of Madison Avenue advertising firms. Aside from being one of the top ad men in the business, Don is also a family man, the father of young children.

Seinfeld

1989

The "show about nothing" is a sitcom landmark, with comic Jerry and his three sardonic friends finding laughs in both the mundane and the ridiculous.

I Love Lucy

1951

Cuban Bandleader Ricky Ricardo would be happy if his wife Lucy would just be a housewife. Instead she tries constantly to perform at the Tropicana where he works, and make life comically frantic in the apartment building they share with landlords Fred and Ethel Mertz, who also happen to be their best friends.

Deadwood

2004

In the Black Hills Indian Cession, the town of Deadwood is a settlement violating treaty obligations; a violent and uncivilized outpost that attracts outlaws and entrepreneurs, ex-soldiers and racketeers, Chinese laborers, prostitutes, city slickers and gunfighters.

All in the Family

1971

Legendary and controversial series focused on conservative working stiff Archie Bunker fighting the tide of social change and dealing with flighty wife Edith, daughter Gloria and left-leaning son-in-law Michael Stivic.

M*A*S*H

1972

The 4077th Mobile Army Surgical Hospital is stuck in the middle of the Korean war. With little help from the circumstances they find themselves in, they are forced to make their own fun. Fond of practical jokes and revenge, the doctors, nurses, administrators, and soldiers often find ways of making wartime life bearable.

Hill Street Blues

1981

This groundbreaking and award-winning NBC crime drama provided a very realistic view into the lives of the dedicated cops and detectives of an urban police station. From January 1981 to August 1986, the show ran on Thursdays at 10/9 Central, with occasional repeats on Saturdays at 10/9 Central. From August 1986 to August 1987 first-run episodes aired Tuesdays at 10/9 Central.

The Shield

2002

The story of an inner-city Los Angeles police precinct where some of the cops aren't above breaking the rules or working against their associates to both keep the streets safe and their self-interests intact.

The Twilight Zone

1959

The Twilight Zone was a popular American anthology series. The series was a collection of various tales that range from the tragic to the comedic. They may be scary or just thought-provoking. Most episodes have unexpected endings and a moral lesson. But, no matter what, it's "a journey into a wondrous land, whose boundaries are that of the imagination."

Arrested Development

2003

Level-headed son Michael Bluth takes over family affairs after his father is imprisoned. But the rest of his spoiled, dysfunctional family are making his job unbearable.

The Larry Sanders Show

1992

Comic Garry Shandling draws upon his own talk show experiences to create the character of Larry Sanders, a paranoid, insecure host of a late night talk show. Larry, along with his obsequious TV sidekick Hank Kingsley and his fiercely protective producer Artie, allows Garry Shandling and his talented writers to look behind the scenes and to show us a convincing slice of behind the camera life.

The Honeymooners

1955

The Honeymooners, one of the most influential situation comedy television series in American history, depicts the sincere attempts of two men attempting to better their lives, and the ensuing frustrations when their schemes to strike it rich inevitably backfire.

Louie

2010

Louis C.K. stars as a fictionalized version of himself- a comedian and newly divorced father raising his two daughters in New York City.

The Mary Tyler Moore Show

1970

The Mary Tyler Moore Show was one of the most literate, realistic, and enduring situation comedies of the 1970s. Mary Richards was the idealized single career woman. She had come to Minneapolis after breaking up with a man she had been dating for four years. Ambitious, and looking for new friends, she moved into an older apartment building and went to work as an assistant producer of the local news show on television station WJM-TV. In her early 30s, Mary symbolized the independent woman of the 1970s.

The X-Files

1993

`The truth is out there,' and FBI agents Scully and Mulder seek it in this sci-fi phenomenon about their quest to explain the seemingly unexplainable. Their strange cases include UFO sightings, alien abductions and just about anything else paranormal.

Curb Your Enthusiasm

2000

An unscripted series that brings the off-kilter comic vision of Larry David, who plays himself in a parallel universe in which he can’t seem to do anything right, and, by his standards, neither can anyone else.

SpongeBob SquarePants

1999

The misadventures of a talking sea sponge who works at a fast food restaurant, attends a boating school, and lives in an underwater pineapple.

Twin Peaks

1990

The body of a young girl is washed up on a beach near the small Washington state town of Twin Peaks. Eccentric FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper is called in to investigate her strange demise only to uncover a web of mystery that ultimately leads him deep into the heart of the surrounding woodland and his very own soul. Season 3 - also known as Twin Peaks: The Return - is set 25 years after the events of Seasons 1 and 2.

Lost

2004

After their plane, Oceanic Air flight 815, tore apart whilst thousands of miles off course, the survivors find themselves on a mysterious deserted island where they soon find out they are not alone.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer

1997

In every generation there is a Chosen One. She alone will stand against the vampires, the demons and the forces of darkness. She is the Slayer. Buffy Summers is The Chosen One, the one girl in all the world with the strength and skill to fight the vampires. With the help of her close friends, Willow, Xander, and her Watcher Giles she balances slaying, family, friendships, and relationships.

Freaks and Geeks

1999

Two unique groups of teenagers deal with life in high school during the 1980s. Lindsay Weir rebels and begins hanging out with a crowd of burnouts, the "freaks," while her brother Sam Weir navigates a different part of the social universe with his nerdy friends, the "geeks."

My So-Called Life

1994

"My So-Called Life" is a realistic mid-nineties teen drama series that takes a look at a 15 year-old girl and her trials and tribulations with being a teenager and dealing with friends, guys, parents and school.

Oz

1997

OZ is set deep inside the Oswald Maximum Security Prison, in an experimental unit known as Emerald City. Em City focuses on prisoner rehabilitation over public retribution. There's one set of rules from the outside looking in, and another once you're inside. Every group - Muslims, Latinos, Italians, Aryans - stick close to their mutual friends and terrorizes their mutual enemies.

The Dick Van Dyke Show

1961

Considered to be one of television's classics, "The Dick Van Dyke Show" centers on the personal and professional lives of Rob Petrie, a writer for the fictional "Alan Brady Show". The non-stop laughs revolved around Rob's relationships with with fellow writers Buddy Sorrell and Sally Rogers, and producer Mel Cooley. At home, we also got to chuckle (and sometimes cry) over Rob's antics involving his wife, son, and neighbors.

Friday Night Lights

2006

In Dillon, Texas, high school football brings the community together as the drama of small town life threatens to tear it apart.

NYPD Blue

1993

The gritty details of life as a member of a New York City police unit.

Frasier

1993

After many years spent at the "Cheers" bar, Frasier moves back home to Seattle after his policeman father Martin Crane gets shot in the hip on duty. After Martin struggles with living alone after the incident, he moves in with Frasier in his luxury apartment at the Elliot Bay Towers along with his dog Eddie. Hired by Frasier, Daphne Moon also moves in as Martin's personal physiotherapist. Also living nearby is his younger brother Niles Crane, who is also a Psychiatrist.

Homicide: Life On The Street

1993

Based on the factual book Homicide: A Year On the Killing Streets by journalist David Simon, the series charts the lives of a team of homicide detectives in Baltimore, Maryland, both on and off the clock.

Battlestar Galactica (2003)

2005

In a distant part of the universe, a civilization of humans live on planets known as the Twelve Colonies. In the past, the Colonies have been at war with a cybernetic race known as the Cylons. 40 years after the first war the Cylons launch a devastating attack on the Colonies. The only military ship that survived the attack takes up the task of leading a small fugitive fleet of survivors into space in search of a fabled refuge known as Earth.

In Treatment

2008

A therapist is the picture of insightful perfection when dealing with his patients, but he becomes a raging ball of issues during his own therapy sessions.

South Park

1997

South Park is an animated series featuring four boys who live in the Colorado town of South Park, which is beset by frequent odd occurrences. The show grew out of a short film that Trey Parker and Matt Stone created called The Spirit of Christmas, and has become an award-winning show that is a unique blend of humor and satire.

The West Wing

1999

A glimpse into presidential politics in the nation's capital as it tells the stories of the members of a fictional presidential administration. These interesting characters have humor and dedication that touches the heart while the politics that they discuss touch on everyday life.

Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman

1976

Louise Lasser delivers a masterful performance in the title role of Norman Lear's sublimely twisted soap opera, Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman -- at once a parody of the format and a twisted satire of American media/consumer culture. In the fictional town of Fernwood, Ohio, suburban housewife Mary Hartman seeks the kind of domestic perfection promised by Reader's Digest and TV commercials. Instead she finds herself suffering the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune -- mass murders, low-flying airplanes, and waxy yellow buildup on her kitchen floor.

The Andy Griffith Show

1960

Down-home humor and an endearing cast of characters helped make The Andy Griffith Show one of the most beloved comedies in the history of TV. The show centered around widower Andy Taylor, who divided his time between raising his young son Opie, and his job as sheriff of the sleepy North Carolina town, Mayberry. Andy and Opie live with Andy's Aunt Bee, who serves as a surrogate mother to both father and son. Andy's nervous cousin, Barney Fife, is his deputy sheriff whose incompetence is tolerated because Mayberry is virtually crime-free.

The Cosby Show

1984

Dr. Heathcliff "Cliff" Huxtable was an OBGYN (obstetrician/gynecologist), and his wife Clair was a successful attorney. They had five children: Sondra, Denise, Theo, Vanessa and Rudy. Sondra was rarely seen during the first season because she was away at Princeton. She became a regular character in the second season, and was usually seen with her on-again off-again beau, Elvin. They eventually married and had twins; but not before stunning their families by announcing the fact that Elvin was dropping out of medical school to open a camping store, and Sondra was dropping out of law school to help her husband in his endeavor. Denise was the "unique" child, the black sheep of the family. She had her own way of doing things, right down to the style of clothing she wore. After graduating high school, she left for Hillman College in 1986 (a year later, this would become the setting for the spin-off A Different World), but returned two years later with news that she was dropping ou

Moonlighting

1985

When former fashion model Maddie Hayes goes broke and finds that one of her few remaining assets is ownership of the Blue Moon Detective Agency, she is tempted to liquidate it until she meets the quirky employees and gets involved in their even quirkier cases.

Taxi

1978

Taxi's success was due to its excellent writing, Burrows's award-winning directing using his innovative four-camera technique, and its largely unknown but talented cast. Danny DeVito's Louie DePalma soon became one of the most despised men on television--possibly the most unredeemable and worthless louse of a character ever to reside on the small screen. Andy Kaufman's foreign mechanic Latka Gravas provided over-the-top comedy within an ensemble emphasizing subtle character humor.

East Side/West Side

1963

Neil Brock is a young social worker in the slums of New York City; his boss is Frieda Hechlinger; and Jane Foster is the office secretary. This dramatic series features stories about child abuse, drug abuse, rip-offs of the welfare system, crime, etc., i.e., all of the problems of the inner city.

Hannibal

2013

Both a gift and a curse, Will Graham has the extraordinary ability to think like his prey—he sees what they see, feels what they feel. But while Graham is pursuing an especially troubling, cannibalistic murderer, Special Agent Jack Crawford teams him with a highly respected psychiatrist – a man with a taste for the criminal minded – Dr. Hannibal Lecter.

ER

1994

ER follows the medical personnel and patients in the emergency room of Chicago's fictional County General Hospital. The doctors and nurses of County's ER confront the daily challenges of a busy urban hospital, including overcrowded waiting rooms, staffing shortages, and the impact of life-and-death decisions. While they teach the next generation of doctors, each must tackle the demands of their personal lives, at times unsuccessfully.

Parks and Recreation

2009

The series follows Leslie Knope, the deputy head of the Parks and Recreation department in the fictional town of Pawnee, Indiana. Knope takes on a project with a nurse named Ann to turn a construction pit into a park, while trying to mentor a bored college-aged intern. However, Leslie must fight through the bureaucrats, problem neighbors, and developers in order to make her dream a reality, all with a camera crew recording her every gaff and mishap.

Roseanne

1988

Explore life, death and everything in between through the relatable, hilarious and brutally honest lens of the working-class Conner household, which is located in the drab, fictional exurb of Langford, Illinois. With the inimitable Roseanne Barr at its epicenter as the family's matriarch, the series tackles current issues with fresh stories and even more laughs. Roseanne is joined by her husband, Dan, and their children, D.J., Darlene and Becky. Roseanne's warm, but neurotic, sister Jackie rounds out the core of the family.

30 Rock

2006

Liz Lemon, the head writer of a live variety program's life is turned upside down when brash new network executive Jack Donaghy interferes with her show, bringing the wildly unpredictable Tracy Jordan into the cast. Now its up to Liz to manage the mayhem and still try to have a life.

The Bob Newhart Show

1972

Bob Newhart is Dr. Robert Hartley, a Chicago psychologist living with his schoolteacher wife Emily. Complicating life for the serene, stammering doc was his neighbor, Howard, a flighty navigator; and Bob's coworkers, dentist Jerry and flippant receptionist Carol. The humor was gentle, sophisticated and, at times, wonderfully surreal.

Malcolm in the Middle

2000

A gifted and smart young man tries to navigate life, puberty, and love while trying to survive his often dimwitted, dysfunctional family.

Miami Vice

1984

Miami Vice centers around the unlikely partnership of Sonny Crockett (Don Johnson) and Ricardo Tubbs (Philip Michael Thomas), two undercover detectives from the Miami Police Department’s vice squad battling against drug trafficking and prostitution in the city’s seamy underworld. Its use of New Wave music and colorful Italian men’s fashion was groundbreaking and the series had a defining influence on the popular culture of the 1980s.

The Office (US)

2005

A mockumentary on a group of typical office workers, where the workday consists of ego clashes, inappropriate behavior, and tedium.

St. Elsewhere

1982

St. Eligius Hospital in South Boston was not exactly the world's best health care center. Despite its flaws, it featured some of the most caring doctors and nurses you could ever meet. Led by Dr. Donald Westphall (and later by Dr. John Gideon), the hospital nicknamed "St. Elsewhere" became a sanctuary for the underdog and the downtrodden.

Community

2009

From Emmy Award-winner Dan Harmon comes "Community", a smart comedy series about higher education – and lower expectations. The student body at Greendale Community College is made up of high-school losers, newly divorced housewives, and old people who want to keep their minds active. Within these not-so-hallowed halls, Community focuses on a band of misfits, at the center of which is a fast-talking lawyer whose degree was found to be fake, who form a study group and end up learning a lot more about themselves than they do about their course work.

The Golden Girls

1985

Four previously married women live together in Miami, sharing their various experiences together and enjoying themselves despite hard times.

Police Squad!

1982

In this cult parody of cop dramas, replete with farce and sight gags, Lieutenant Frank Drebin and his fellow officers from Police Squad bungle their way though crime investigations.

24

2001

"24" is a TV thriller presented in "real time" with each minute of airtime that corresponds to a minute in the lives of the characters. "24" employs fast-paced and complex stories, and often contains unexpected plot twists. Though each day's events typically revolve around thwarting an impending terrorist attack, each season is made up of various interwoven story threads. These may run for just one hour, but more usually run over several hours. These typically involve investigations of leads on terrorists, tracking suspects, and averting attacks. The exact objective of the day evolves over the course of the season as the antagonists adapt, contingencies arise, and larger scale operations unfold.

The Defenders

1961

Recent law school graduate (Robert Reed) joins his father (E.G. Marshall) as the pair tackle challenging legal cases, often involving issues which were highly touchy for the times (abortion, euthanasia, "un-American" activities, movie censorship). In most, the freshly minted lawyer has much to learn from his father's extensive legal experience.

Gunsmoke

1955

Marshal Matt Dillon keeps the peace in the rough and tumble Dodge City.

Sex and the City

1998

The narrative of the show focuses on Carrie Bradshaw and her three best friends, Miranda Hobbes, Charlotte York and Samantha Jones. The women discuss their sexual desires and fantasies, and their travels in life, love and lesbianism. The show often depicts frank discussions about romance and sexuality, features a short montage of interviews of people living in New York City.

Star Trek

1966

Space. The Final Frontier. The U.S.S. Enterprise embarks on a five year mission to explore the galaxy. The Enterprise is under the command of Captain James T. Kirk, who is assisted by First Officer Mr. Spock, from the planet Vulcan, and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Leonard 'Bones' McCoy. With a determined crew, the Enterprise encounters Klingons, Romulans, time paradoxes, tribbles and genetic supermen led by Khan Noonien Singh. Their mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man has gone before.

Firefly

2002

In the far-distant future, Captain Malcolm "Mal" Reynolds is a renegade former brown-coat sergeant, now turned smuggler & rogue, who is the commander of a small spacecraft, with a loyal hand-picked crew made up of the first mate, Zoe Warren; the pilot Hoban "Wash" Washburn; the gung-ho grunt Jayne Cobb; the engineer Kaylee Frye; the fugitives Dr. Simon Tam and his psychic sister River. Together, they travel the far reaches of space in search of food, money, and anything to live on.

Law & Order

1990

A blended police procedural and courtroom drama which employs a two-part approach: The first half of each episode focuses on NYPD homicide detectives investigating a crime—often derived from a real-life headline—and apprehending a suspect. The second half takes place in the courtroom, with the district attorney prosecuting the defendant.

Maude

1972

Maude was one of the most popular shows during the 70s. Not only was it one of the most popular, it was one of the most controversial. The show was real and told it like it is - much like the show that first introduced us to Maude, All in the Family. Maude was outspoken and stong-willed... which lead her to many interesting and controversial situations. Maude wasted no time becoming one of the most controversial shows ever when she, at age 47, became pregnant and decided to get an abortion (the first show to ever have the lead character get an abortion). By the end of the show Maude was heading to Congress, ready to take on a new world. And it seemed we would get to see Congresswoman Maude, but Bea Arthur decided to leave the show. Maude remains as part of TV history and has since become a true classic. Others in the cast include, Maude's fourth husband, Walter, and her divorced daughter, Carol from her first marriage. Arthur was the next door neighbor who later married Maud

The Rockford Files

1974

Emmy® winner James Garner stars as the offbeat Jim Rockford, an ex-con-turned-private-investigator who would rather fish than fight but whose instinct on closed cases is more golden than his classic Pontiac Firebird. From his mobile home in Malibu, this wisecracking private eye takes you on the cases of the lost and the dispossessed, chasing down seemingly long-dead clues in the sun-baked streets and seamy alleys of Los Angeles.

China Beach

1988

The trials of a weary nurse, her friends and colleagues in a Vietnam War field hospital.

Enlightened

2011

Enlightened follows the story of Amy, a self-destructive executive, who, after a very public breakdown and a subsequent philosophical awakening in rehabilitation, tries to get her life back together.

Everybody Loves Raymond

1996

Everybody Loves Raymond revolves around Ray Barone, a successful sportswriter living on Long Island with his wife, Debra, 12-year-old daughter, Ally, and 8-year-old twin sons, Geoffrey and Michael. That's the good news. The bad news? Ray's meddling parents, Frank and Marie, live directly across the street and embrace the motto "Su casa es mi casa," infiltrating their son's home to an extent unparalleled in television history. Frank's favorite expression, "Holy Crap," is shouted at regular intervals, and Marie's "cooking advice" is less than appreciated by Debra. Brother Robert, a divorced policeman, is constantly moving in and out of his parents' house, and loves to drop over and resent Ray's successful career and happy family life. Ray and Debra just wish someone would knock once in a while. Finalizing it's 9th and final season, the cast and crew of "ELR" has had a very successful run, and it makes it even harder for them all to say good-bye. This show has a place in televi

The Wonder Years

1988

The Wonder Years tells the story of Kevin Arnold facing the trials and tribulations of youth while growing up during the 1960s. Told through narration from an adult Kevin, Kevin faces the difficulties of maintaining relationships and friendships on his enthralling journey into adulthood.

Barney Miller

1975

Hal Linden stars in the title role as a NYPD captain in charge of a squad of oddball detectives and even stranger criminals.

Frank's Place

1987

Frank's Place chronicles the life of Frank Parrish (Tim Reid), a well-to-do African-American professor at Brown University, who inherits a restaurant in New Orleans, the Chez Louisiane.

It's Garry Shandling's Show

1986

Groundbreaking and entirely self-aware comedy series featuring comedian Garry Shandling.

The Jack Benny Program

1950

Jack Benny was a regular on his own radio program since 1932. He brought the program, with his underplayed humor, to TV along with his radio regulars. Jack, who remained 39-years-old, kept his money in his basement and drove his old Maxwell car just as he had done on the radio.

Justified

2010

At the explosive center of the action, Western-style, gun-slinging U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens confronts murder, drugs, bank heists, mobsters, crime families, corrupt politicians and even his own tumultuous past and never backs down. His ultimate adversary is the cunning, complex outlaw Boyd Crowder, but the real wild card is Ava Crowder, the mysterious woman torn between the two men and both sides of the law.

The Bullwinkle Show

1959

Rocky and Bullwinkle began life in the 1950's television show, The Frostbite Falls Review. It was created by Jay Ward and Bill Scott. Their names in that show were Rocket J. Squirrel and Canadian Moose. The Frostbite Falls Review was not very successful so Rocky and Bullwinkle became the stars of their own show, Rocky and His Friends. The show was co-created by Alex Anderson and premiered on November 29th, 1959 on ABC. Added to the cast were Boris and Natasha, two Pottsylvanian spies. The show also featured various segments; Peabody's Improbable History, Fractured Fairy Tales, Mr. Know-It-All, and Aesop and Son. In 1961, the show moved to NBC and was renamed The Bullwinkle Show. It ran for three seasons and was canceled in 1964. ABC ran reruns until 1974, when the show then entered syndication.

Thirtysomething

1987

When thirtysomething debuted in 1987 it was attacked by some critics as being a self-indulgent examination of the minutiae of yuppie life. Before the first season was over, some of those same critics were covering their tracks by calling it "the most improved show on television." Producers Ed Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz had teamed up before on Family and would go on to create My So-Called Life, Relativity and Once and Again. Often using feature-film techniques, their brand of what could be called "reality" television tackled not only the small subjects, but the big ones too, all the way from life to death, as they followed their characters on the road from the idealism of youth to the search for security and responsibility as they glided toward middle age.

Columbo

1968

A Los Angeles homicide detective, Lieutenant Columbo, uses his humble ways and shrewd demeanor to ferret out even the most careful criminals.

Friends

1994

Rachel Green, Ross Geller, Monica Geller, Joey Tribbiani, Chandler Bing and Phoebe Buffay are six 20 something year-olds, living off one another in the heart of New York City. Over the course of ten years, this average group of buddies goes through massive mayhem, family trouble, past and future romances, fights, laughs, tears and surprises as they learn what it really means to be a friend.

Futurama

1999

A late 20th-century New York City pizza delivery boy, Philip J. Fry, after being unwittingly cryogenically frozen for one thousand years, finds employment at Planet Express, an interplanetary delivery company in the 31st century.

The Outer Limits

1963

Tending toward the hard science, space travel, time travel, and human evolution it tries to examine in each show some form of the question, "What is the nature of man?"

Northern Exposure

1990

Dr. Joel Fleischman (Rob Morrow) graduates from Columbia University medical school thanks to a scholarship from the state of Alaska. Though he was promised a placement at the large hospital in Anchorage, he is instead whisked away to the tiny town of Cicely, where he must work off his education debt as the local General Practitioner. The location is remote, the people are weird and quirky, and all Joel wants is to return to New York. The show thrived on this "fish out of water" storyline and the "will they or won't they" dynamic between Fleischman and Janine Turner's Maggie O'Connell.

Batman

1966

Wealthy entrepreneur Bruce Wayne and his ward Dick Grayson lead a double life: they are actually crime fighting duo Batman and Robin. A secret Batpole in the Wayne mansion leads to the Batcave, where Police Commissioner Gordon often calls with the latest emergency threatening Gotham City. Racing the the scene of the crime in the Batmobile, Batman and Robin must (with the help of their trusty Bat-utility-belt) thwart the efforts of a variety of master criminals, including The Riddler, The Joker, Catwoman, and The Penguin.

King of the Hill

1997

In the little town of Arlen, Texas, lives a man who embodies the spirit of the Lone Star State. Hank Hill tends his lawn with pride, never overcooks his steak and sells propane and propane accessories. In this animated series from Mike Judge, Hank and his wife Peggy work to raise their son Bobby, be good neighbors and uphold their middle-class Texas values amid a changing world.

Veronica Mars

2004

In the fictional town of Neptune, California, student Veronica Mars progresses from high school to college while moonlighting as a private investigator under the tutelage of her detective father.

Cagney & Lacey

1982

Mary Beth Lacey and Chris Cagney are teamed up as NYPD detectives in this landmark series. Their opposing personalities (one is tough and the other sensitive) mesh to make this one of the greatest crime-fighting duos of all time.

EZ Streets

1996

EZ Streets is an epic drama about a dark, gritty urban world, the people who live there and their struggle to live by the creed of the streets. The one-hour series explores the lives of Detective Cameron Quinn, gangster Jimmy Murtha, and ex-con Daniel Rooney, fiercely independent men living parallel lives on opposite sides of the law. Quinn is a cop who has to deal with corruption in order to find the truth. Murtha and Rooney are two individuals living in a very violent world with its own moral code. Rooney just got out of jail for a crime that he did not commit, but he's slowly being drawn back in by Murtha, the head of one of the city's most notorious new gangs, the EZ's. Keeping Murtha one step ahead of hard time is his attorney, Theresa Connors.

Gilmore Girls

2000

Lorelai Gilmore has made her share of mistakes in life, but she has been doing her best to see that her college-bound daughter Rory, who’s also her best friend in the world, doesn’t follow in her footsteps. That may be easier said than done, considering that the two share the same interests, the same intellect, the same coffee addiction and the same eyes.

Six Feet Under

2001

A chronicle of the lives of a dysfunctional family who run an independent funeral home in Los Angeles.

Sports Night

1998

Sports Night ran nearly two full seasons on the ABC network in the US during the '98-99 and '99-00 seasons. Smart, fast-paced, witty and featuring a fine ensemble cast, Sports Night struggled in the ratings from the start, particularly during its second season, when it was routinely pre-empted and moved from night to night. Art imitated life imitating art, as the show took on a consultant, was hired to "tweak" the ratings. The show within a show continued to falter, amidst rumors of the imminent sale of its network and the subsequent gutting of its staff, until it, like its parent Sports Night, simply disappeared from the schedule.

Wiseguy

1987

Vinnie Terranova does time in a New Jersey penitentiary to set up his undercover role as an agent for the OCB (Organized Crime Bureau) of the United States. His roots in a traditional Italian city neighborhood form the underlying dramatic base throughout the series, bringing him into conflict with his conservative mother and other family members while acting undercover as syndicate enforcer.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

1993

When the Cardassian occupation of Bajor ended in 2369, the mining space-station Terok Nor was left abandoned, its systems ripped out. By invitation of the provisional Bajoran government, Starfleet stepped in to oversee the rebuilding and day-to-day operations of the newly christened Deep Space Nine. DS9 soon became a center of travel and commerce thanks to a newly found stable wormhole leading to the largely unexplored Gamma Quadrant.

Batman: The Animated Series

1992

The Dark Knight battles crime in Gotham City with occasional help from Robin and Batgirl.

Boardwalk Empire

2010

An Atlantic City politician plays both sides of the law by conspiring with gangsters during the Prohibition era.

NewsRadio

1995

"NewsRadio" showcases the hilarious antics of the whimsical #2 news radio station in New York City. The corral of characters are eccentric and witty, and they surprise each other with their back-and-forth banter. Their workplace humor also supplies an abundance of laughs amidst this unlikely bunch of colleagues.

Picket Fences

1992

Before Ally and The Practice, David E. Kelley was behind this superlative series. Picket Fences followed the lives of the residents of the small town of Rome, Wisconsin, where weird things happened. Cows giving birth to human babies, a spate of people turning up dead in freezers, sex change teachers, a revolving door of mayors who never lasted very long - and one who even spontaneously combusted! Struggling to maintain order in this Twin Peaksesque environment is Sheriff Jimmy Brock. Married to the town doctor, Jill, they are attempting to bring up their three kids Kimberly, Matthew and Zachary against the odds.

Scrubs

2001

Scrubs focuses on the lives of several people working at Sacred Heart, a teaching hospital. It features fast-paced dialogue, slapstick, and surreal vignettes presented mostly as the daydreams of the central character, Dr. John Michael "J.D." Dorian.

WKRP in Cincinnati

1978

When a Cincinnati radio station switches from sedate music to top-40 rock 'n' roll, its staff of oddball characters is forced to switch gears quickly. New programming director Andy Travis brings in a new DJ named Venus Flytrap to work with the station's burned-out veteran, Dr. Johnny Fever. Neurotic newsman Les Nessman, eager beaver Bailey Quarters, sleazy salesman Herb Tarlek, blonde bombshell Jennifer Marlowe, who serves as the station's ultra-capable receptionist, and station manager Arthur Carlson, whose domineering mother owns WKRP, round out the eccentric bunch.

How I Met Your Mother

2005

A father tells his children, through a series of flashbacks, the journey that he and his four best friends undertook, which would lead him to meet their mother.

Soap

1977

Soap: the TV show that made Soap Operas funny! Soap is a tale about two sisters, Mary Campbell and Jessica Tate. While the Tates are a rich family, the Campbells are just another blue-collared family, but they go through amazing and crazy situations. This series will make you travel through a world of crazy and funny situations that happen all in the family.

Terriers

2010

Ex-cop and recovering alcoholic Hank Dolworth partners with his best friend, former criminal Britt Pollack, in an unlicensed private investigation business. The series is set in Ocean Beach, San Diego, California, although it is portrayed as a distinct town, with Dolworth having once been a member of the fictional Ocean Beach Police Department.