Top 5 TV Shows

If you read the blog from yesterday you know that today is the first of a series of “Top 5” lists I will be posting this week.

Today’s post, Top 5 TV shows is a very hard one to start with, in part because I simply don’t watch a ton of TV.  But in thinking about the actual list do I go top 5 of all time or top 5 current?  Can I make the list more specific by going top 5 comedy or top 5 drama?  Of course I could, but I won’t.  Part of the controversy with these lists (even in my own mind) will be to argue the length of the show (how many years it has been on), the strength of the show (were the early years better than the last years?), and the returnability of the show (meaning, could I return to this show after not seeing it for five years).

Because of these three areas I can already think of shows that I liked that are now off the list, for instance, Prison Break was one of my favorite shows, in fact, I think season one of Prison Break may have been my favorite TV season ever.  So, the strength eliminates this one, whereas a reality show I have followed is Survivor, but there is NO returanability with a reality show, so it is eliminated.

The way I went about making this list was to think of it in terms of DVD’s of the series… would I want the complete box set of this series after the show was off the air.  So, without further ado, here we go.

images-2Five: Cheers.  This is a surprise entry to me actually, as I thought about this show with the criteria that I set, I can honestly say this is one of the DVD series I would pick.  Cheers had a great run as a show, and even spun off a show, Frasier, that had an equally strong run.  This show had a couple classic openings that I still chuckle about just thinking about them.  And you gotta love Norm!

images-3Four: The Office.  No doubt this is the one show I expect will make a run up the charts over the years; however, it is still young and needs another year or two of consistent awkwardness to propel its way up.

images-4Three: 24. Jack Bauer could kick any other character’s back side, but as a whole there are still two shows that top it.  Two of the seasons of 24 (of the seven so far) have been a little weaker, whereas a couple seasons would compete with Prison Break for the best one year ever.


Two: M*A*S*H.  This one may seem like an odd choice, but just last night I found myself watching back-to-back episodes on TV Land.  Hawkey, BJ, Colonel Potter and Radar were a few of my favorites on the show.

imagesOne: Seinfeld.  Jerry, George, Kramer and Elaine take the cake.  I find myself quoting way too many episodes to not put it in the number one slot!

I am sure there are a few shows I am missing and perhaps a comment or two will re-shape my thinking, I am not opposed to revising my list, but make your argument, convince me that I am wrong, I will make changes, but now it is up to you, the reader, to let me know if you agree, disagree or want some changes!




7 thoughts on “Top 5 TV Shows

  1. I don’t think I can argue with your list too much because a lot of them are preferences. Seinfeld, great show if it’s your thing, I’m not as huge of a fan. . Cheers is a solid choice just because it led to Fraiser which would be a top 5 on my list no question. I would say though 24’s gotta be at least number 2 on the list Mash above 24, based off of a couple tv land episdoes?

    1. If Brad honestly thinks I listed MASH over 24 because I watched two episodes on TV Land then I think he might just be a little LOST right now. Brad, I’m also sorry my list didn’t include your favorite, Days of Our Lives, I just am not into the daytime dramas, sorry.
      Note: Brad and I do like each other, smack talk won’t come after each comment, just Brad’s comments.

      1. No Days of Our Lives, no Dawson’s Creek, 90210, you missed all the classics, but that being said regardless of how many episodes you’ve watched Mash. 24 still should be above them on any list. Yes Mashhad a great run, but there is nothing like seeing how Jack Bauer is going to save the world. He can take out several guys with machine guns or just kill a guy by biting them in the throat. It’s awesome.
        Note: Brian and I play in the same fantasy basketball league that has a lot of smack talk. If Brian took half as much time at fantasy bball as he does at smack talk, he might actually win the league.

  2. Wes Henry commented on the wrong post: Here is what he said:
    I would have to agree… to disagree! There is no way you can lump the nostalgic “Cheers”, perfectly delivered lines, some of the greatest actors of all time, in with the randomness of “The Office”. Cheers covered many different generations, including yours Mr. Aaby and your momma’s, and has given life-like reality to many. People cried when Cheers went off the AIR.

    As for 24… couldn’t agree with you more. That one definitely belongs in the “Top 5″ (A possible substitute could be LOST)

    M*A*S*H is, again a nostalgic great that belongs on any great Top TV list.

    Seinfeld I think would be like in a Top 10 list. Great for one-liners and silly situations and that Elaine Fully-body Dry Heave as a dance. Priceless.

    Now with all that said… please allow me to give a Top 5 as I see it.

    #5 – Cheers… wanting to back up my statements from earlier.

    #4 – LOST… the show people loved to hate. If you didn’t see it from the start, you felt lost (no pun intended) but something just kept you wanting to watch.

    #3- M*A*S*H … again backing up my previous statements. M*A*S*H still has a place in American TV today.

    #2 – FRIENDS … Ross and Rachel. On again, off again. The cameos and the one-liners. The flash forwards and backwards. We have all seen ourselves in one of the characters of FRIENDS and have wanted to be them or just be with them. You can’t deny the 10+ season run. I mean they even have games and triva based on this show.

    #1 – The Cosby Show … This show was so far ahead of it’s time. It not only showed us what a normal family could be, open and dysfunctional with resolve, they were black. Leaps and bounds ahead of its time. Growing up in a predominantly black neighborhood myself, this is all I heard about growing up. Not only did it break all stereo-types, it gave hope to a generation of young people that to this day, will not forget the lessons they learned from Mr Bill Cosby and the family themselves.

    I hope this answers your Top 5. Hit it back.

    Later, Wes

    1. Wes,
      For what it is worth, The Cosby Show very nearly cracked the top 5, but in flipping through the old tube, I honestly would have to say that if Nick at Nite were showing Cosby and TV Land were showing one of the others, I would probably pick all the others in my top 5 over it. It was a GREAT show though, so I don’t disagree at all, just my opinion places the others ahead.
      LOST has been lost on me. Never seen a single episode, I hear it is great though.
      As for Friends, I agree with much of your thought in terms of seeing yourself in one of the characters, I have chuckled a many in seeing Friends, but it probably doesn’t crack my top 10 even.

      Great thoughts so far, hope we get some more!

  3. Would love to respond. But I honestly do not watch five t.v. shows. Watch about the first five minutes of the news couple times a month, maybe. I would just rather read a
    good book or something else. Similar to gardening, t.v. is just not relaxing to me like it is for some.

    P.S. Who has time to watch t.v.?

  4. okay I’ll join in…

    5: Friday Night Lights. It’s not afraid to hit some really serious topics in a serious manner and show consequences of some people’s actions. I’m totally stoked for the 3rd season.

    4: Fraiser. This might be the only sitcom that made me laugh since the Cosby show and it is certainly the sitcom that I watched the most.

    3: Prison Break (Season 1). It was a fast slippery slope after season 1 that never seemed to recapture what the first season had. But the first season was one of the best shows I have ever seen.

    2: Homicide: Life on the Street. I was in high school when I watched this and was seriously sad the day that they pulled it. It was the best crime drama I have ever seen because it was the most realistic. Crimes didn’t always get solved. The characters had personality flaws and the acting was so good it made me feel like I knew the people. Andre Braugher is still one of my favorite actors.

    1: 24. Seriously. If there is a show I don’t miss it’s this one. Jack Bauer is not perfect, the show is sometimes ridiculous, but it’s the most fun and engaging show on TV.

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