Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Top 25 TV Shows: Part 1

Television is a fascinating form of media. Whereas film only allows a few hours to tell a story, television can tell a much larger narrative or many episodic stories, yet is often restricted by budget and cancellation. However, television has given us many of fictions greatest characters and stories and the extra time TV affords, we have often spent more time with television characters than any film or novel can provide. Some shows span years, while others are cut short, well before their time. Today, my list of the Top 25 TV Shows will kick off!

Before we get started, here are some rules and things to remember. The television must have aired a complete first season at this time, and miniseries are not included. Please note that shows that have aired on movie channels, like HBO, are likely not on the list because I have never had those channels. Lastly, ranking television series that aired before I became a critic is difficult, therefore many series featured are relatively new or currently airing. So, with that out of the way, let’s get started!

25: Arrow
CW's first series that launched a larger DC universe on television, the CW-Verse, Arrow tells the story of Oliver Queen, who becomes the Arrow to protect Star City. Arrow opened strong with a solid first season, a great second season, a lacking third season, and a fun, yet imperfect, fourth season, at least thus far. Arrow isn't exactly masterpiece television, but it is an incredibly fun and entertaining action series. The writing can be inconsistent, yet I thoroughly enjoy most episodes every week. What can I say, I enjoy superheroes and fun! DC's Legends of Tomorrow would have made the list if it was not so short, but it is definitely better than Arrow's current season.
Watch on: Netflix, CW

24: Fawlty Towers
If you want to laugh and only have to watch 12 episodes, look no further than the British comedy classic, Fawlty Towers. Starring Monty Python veteran, John Cleese, it is possibly Cleese's best work, and considering how hysterical his other works are, that's saying something. Fawlty Towers' premise is simple. It follows Basil Fawlty, his wife, and the people that work at his hotel and all the hilarity that ensues! If you want a short and easy to watch example of the Brit's quick wit, look no further than Fawlty Towers.
Watch on: Netflix

23: Stargate SG-1
After Star Wars, Stargate SG-1 was probably the biggest influence on my love of science fiction when I was a kid. While it is certainly an adult show, it was my favorite show for years until I watched the Doctor Who reboot in 2005. Stargate SG-1 is somewhat of a sequel to the 1994 Roland Emmerich film, Stargate. However, you do not have to see the film for it to make sense. Stargate SG-1 mixes military and exploration as the Stargates that the characters travel through takes them to many alien planets with a deep mythology based on Egyptian and Nordic lore. For an often overlooked sci-fi series, check out Stargate SG-1.
Warning: Since the first season aired on Showtime, an uncensored channel, the first episode contained one scene with 18+ content; however, the rest of the series is mostly TV-14 content.
Watch on: ?

22: Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
Taking place after the first two Terminator films, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles completely changes the timeline and essentially erases the mediocre T3 and Salvation. While the films are more action heavy, the series adds in more dramatic and intrigue, yet still retaining many of the core aspects of the films, especially with the cast. Summer Glau is an exceptional take on the “good” Terminator as the series humanizes her character, and Lena Headey, of Game of Thrones fame, superbly replaces Linda Hamilton's iconic role of Sarah Connor. Fox, "Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal" for cancelling yet another fantastic series after only two seasons, especially since it ended with a cliffhanger!
Watch on: ?
21: Batman: The Animated Series
Sure, it may be animated, but that makes Batman: The Animated Series a no less brilliant television series. Interestingly enough, as a kid, I disliked the series and never watched more than a few episodes. It was not until my late teens did I discover the true greatness of Kevin Conroy and Bruce Tim’s take on Batman. In many ways, Batman: The Animated Series portrays Bruce Wayne/Batman is a more dynamic way than even Nolan’s trilogy. Mark Hamill is an incredibly iconic Joker, and defined the character in many ways. The series even influence the comics by introducing the fan favorite, Harley Quinn, and redefined Mr. Freeze’s origin and character. While it might be dated, Batman: The Animated Series’ influence on Batman comics and American cartoons as well.
Watch on: Amazon Prime

Are any of these your favorites? Please check back soon for the continuation of the list!

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1 comment:

  1. No Cable shows, hmmmm. Its like not letting pros play at the Olympics. I dont watch any non cable shows at the moment. However Agents of Shield and Agent Carter will likely make my list someday. I did like at one time Criminal Minds and NCIS, but just grew tired of the same old. Likely on my top 35 network shows I would have Stargate, all three, Rockford Files, Magnum PI, Fawlty Towers, Bonnaza, The Big Valley, Colombo, Hill Street Blues, Fringe, Star Trek all of them, and The Seeker.


One rule: No strong profanity. If you want to link to one of your posts, please do; I am always interested in other reviews and such.

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