The 50 Greatest TV Shows.

“Of All Time!” Sigh. Anyway, yet another list, designed to put 50 hits on this site’s webcounter. I don’t agree with the #1 pick. They should move up #13.

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6 Responses to The 50 Greatest TV Shows.

  1. Kathy says:

    #38: Bah. Every time I see people saying how great this show is, I have a Vietnam-style flashback to the first and only time I tried to slog through it, and my ptsd starts all over again.

    #34 is too low. The scripts were too smart for it to be that low.

    #26: Yes!

    #35: Yes! This one is missing from many top 50 tv lists, especially ones that include American AND British television shows.

    (lots of iffy SF on this list, though, but I say that having never seen those shows and having assumed they weren’t all that great because I already disliked the source material, or because of what network they were on…so admittedly I might have been biased there.)

    #16: Yay! This doesn’t qualify as *iffy* SF, just to be clear. Bonus points for the author of the list correctly identifying its best episode to date.

    #12: Most overrated show always appearing on these lists. This is more of a head-scratcher to me than #38 was, and I *really* don’t get the appeal of either of them.

    #7: I still don’t get it. Ditto #3. I know both series have huge mountains of fans. I guess I just missed the start of the trail up the mountain, that’s all.

    #1: It seems like every one of these lists has the same #1. Ten years ago or so, it was always Mary Tyler Moore or the Dick Van Dyke Show. Now it’s this one on every list. I dunno. It’s an okay show, but I don’t know how many people watch it anymore. I certainly don’t think it’s OMG BEST EVER.

    Plus they missed Max Headroom. Bah. Considering some of the iffy SF shows I bitched about before, missing Max is a big gaffe. This list is sort of “kinda the best shows of the last ten years or so, plus a couple they still show on PBS”. But enjoyable nonetheless.

  2. Kindralas says:

    There’s a lot of complaining about The Simpsons always garnering so much critical acclaim, and while a lot of the intense gushing is somewhat silly, its position is almost always appropriate. The question easiest to ask, what other show would be #1 if not the Simpsons?

    The answer lies in the largely groundbreaking nature of the show. Not only did it make a network in Fox, but it also broke a whole heck of a lot of molds. If this show had been done with live action, people probably would have simply viewed it as a silly Roseanne ripoff (despite the fact that I’m sure it was in production before Roseanne’s debut), but the fact that it showed that cartoons weren’t necessarily kids material, and that a cartoon could survive in primetime makes it a pretty big deal.

    Granted, once the show hit about season 3 or so, it pretty much became the same show week after week, but its impact on television is unmistakable. There are a lot of shows that can trace its lineage back to the Simpsons, the obvious ones being shows like Family Guy and South Park, but also other satirical shows like The Colbert Report can owe some homage to the Simpsons, just as the Simpsons owe to Saturday Night Live in that regard. Likewise, the barrage of “smart, blue-collar family comedies” that have popped up owe to the Simpsons and Roseanne quite a bit (such as Everybody Loves Raymond). The fact that there are a lot of live-action sitcoms and family shows that exist largely because of the Simpsons’ success shows the strength of the show, aside from the endless cameos, overwrought silliness, and the simple fact that it’s animated.

    I certainly don’t watch the Simpsons, and haven’t in forever. There are maybe hundreds of shows I’d rather watch than the Simpsons. But again, what show do you put at #1 if not it? I don’t think I’ve yet heard a convincing argument for one of these lists that doesn’t have the Simpsons at #1. It’s a bit of a cliche now, but there’s a reason why cliches become that way.

  3. Jason says:

    The page wouldn’t load for me originally. Reading Kathy’s comments and trying to guess what shows she’s talking about were more fun than the list itself.

    Only one I got right (thanks to Brian’s comment) was #1, but I did have Curb at #12 instead of #38. I count that as a win.

    Also, strangely, just like the top 50 comedies list, I counted 17 as shows I’d “followed.”

    And, no M*A*S*H?

  4. DrHeimlich says:

    Yeah, I mostly disagree with this list, even though a lot of my favorites are on there. The major flaw of the list is its heavy bias toward shows that were on the air from the 1990s onward. A lot of very classic older shows got overlooked.

    And some of the ordering is just frakked up. Friends over Seinfeld? Not a chance.

  5. Kindralas says:

    Well, the list has to be sponsored by some British magazine, because there’s a number of shows on that list that never would have made a list Stateside. I wonder if it’s possible to truly generate an unbiased combination of multiple cultures’ television. As it is, I’ll bet most of you can’t find 10 people in the US who have ever heard of Fawlty Towers, let alone seen an episode of it.

    And that’s giving you a head start, because our clan consists of 3. :P

  6. This has actually sparked up an idea in my mind. This really is a superb weblog article.

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