There is so much that television has to offer – from talk shows to daytime soaps, from science fiction to action-packed series. In fact, there is no shortage of well-written shows and series on air today, which is probably the reason to the rising TV viewership by the day.
If you are a TV enthusiast, then for sure you must know about these most loved TV series of recent times:
Jericho is a post-apocalyptic action-drama series focusing on the lives of residents of Jericho, Kansas, suffering from the aftermath of a nuclear attack.
It features an ensemble of characters, including Skeet Ulrich as Jake Green, Lennie James as Robert Hawkins, Ashley Scott as Emily Sullivan, Kenneth Mitchell as Eric Green and Michael Gaston as Gray Anderson.
Produced by Junction Entertainment and CBS Paramount Network Television, Jericho ran on CBS from September 20, 2006 to March 25, 2008, but after its first full season, it was cancelled due to poor ratings. However, a fan campaign was able to persuade the network to bring the show back for another season.
Created by Ted Griffin, Terriers is a crime comedy drama TV series, featuring the lives of the alcoholic Hank Dolworth and his criminal best friend Britt Pollack as they venture into an unlicensed private investigation business. It aired on FX from September 8 to December 1, 2010.
The series is set at Ocean Beach, San Diego, California and stars Dona Logue as Hank Dolworth, Michael Raymond-James as Britt Pollack, Laura Allen as Katie Nichols, Kimberly Quinn as Gretchen Dolworth, Jamie Denbo as Maggie Lefferts and Rockmond Dunbar as Detective Mark Gustafson.
Terriers received an award from IGN as the Best New Series of 2010. Also, it received a nomination from the Television Critics Association for the Outstanding New Program Award.
Battlestar Galactica, or BSG, is an American military science fiction TV series, created by Glen A. Larson and developed by Ronald D. Moore. It first aired in December 2003 on the Sci-Fi Channel as a three-hour mini-series and ran for four seasons. Its run ended on March 20, 2009.
Set in a distant star system, Battlestar Galactica follows the story of a human civilization, living on a group of planets called as the Twelve Colonies.
It stars Mary McDonnell and Edward James Olmos, with Katee Sackhoff, Jamie Bamber, James Callis and Tricia Helfer in supporting roles. Both McDonnell and Olmos were honored for their performance, each receiving a Peabody Award.
BSG was among Time’s 100 Best TV Shows of All-Time. Also, it was given the Program of the Year Award by the Television Critics Association and earned Emmy nominations for its directing, costume design, writing, sound mixing and editing and visual effects.
The success of the movie has led to a prequel spin-off, entitled Caprica. It only aired for one season in 2010. In November 2012, it spawned another spin-off as a web series of 10-minute episodes, Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome.
True Blood, created and produced by Alan Ball, is a television drama series based on Charlain Harris’ series of novels, The Southern Vampire Mysteries. It is a story about vampires and humans co-existing in a small fictional town in northwestern Louisiana.
The series, starring Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer, Sam Trammell, Ryan Kwanten, Rutina Wesley, Alexander Skargard, Nelsan Ellis and Carrie Preston, aired on the premium cable network HBO from September 7, 2008 to August 24, 2014 for seven seasons with 80 episodes.
True Blood’s first five seasons received generally positive reviews from critics. It also received nominations and won several awards, including an Emmy and a Golden Globe. The two lead actors were given recognition for their performances as well, Anna Paquin for Best Actress in a Drama and Stephen Moyer for Best Actor.
Created by J. J. Abrams, Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, Fringe follows the chronicles of Olivia Dungam, Peter Bishop, Walter Bishop and all other members of the fictional Fringe Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation as they try to investigate a series of unexplained occurrences by using fringe science and other FBI investigative techniques.
The series aired for five seasons with 100 episodes on Fox Broadcasting network. It premiered on September 9, 2008 and concluded on January 18, 2013.
Described as a hybrid of The Twilight Zone and The X-Files, the series combines elements from procedural dramas to serials. Most of its episodes have standalone plots, with some episodes exploring the world of mythology and other parallel universes.
The cast and the crew of the show have received nominations and won awards, which include Saturn Awards, Emmys, Satellite Awards, Writers Guild of America Awards and Golden Reel Awards.
Dexter is an American television drama series about a blood spatter analyst Dexter Morgan, who works for the Miami Metro Police Department. He also lives a secret life as a serial killer, who hunts down criminals who have escaped the justice system.
The first season of the show was derived from Jeff Lindsay’s Dexter series novels, Darkly Dreaming Dexter. It premiered on Showtime on October 1, 2006 and concluded on September 22, 2013.
In April 2013, the network announced that Dexter’s final season would be Season 8. When the season finale premiered, it became the most watched episode, with over 3 million viewers. Its season finale drew more than 2.8 million viewers, which is the largest overall audience in the history of Showtime.
Dexter achieved international success and won four straight Primetime Emmy nominations for Best Drama series. All in all, the show received a total of 23 Primetime Emmy Awards nominations. Also, it received nine nominations at the Golden Globes, seven nominations at the Screen Actors Guild Awards and a Peabody Award.
The American television medical drama, House, originally ran for eight seasons on the Fox network, from November 16, 2004 to May 21, 2012. It stars Hugh Laurie as Dr. Gregory House, a medical genius who leads a team of diagnosticians at the Princeton-Plainsboro Teaching Hospital in New Jersey.
Because most of his hypotheses about the illnesses of his patients are based on subtle insights, Dr. House often finds himself arguing with his fellow physicians. Nonetheless, he does whatever it takes to solve the puzzling cases that come his way.
The show’s second to fourth season was among the top-ten rated shows in the United States. It was even cited as the most watched television program in the world in 2008.
House received a number of nominations and awards, including two Golden Globe Awards, nine People’s Choice Awards, five Primetime Emmy Awards and a Peabody Award.
Created by writer and director Joss Whedon, Firefly is a science fiction drama TV series. It is set in the year 2517, when humans arrive at a new star system.
It follows the chronicles of the crew called Serenity, who fought on the losing side of a civil war and is making a living at the extremes of society. In this place, only two superpowers exist, the United States and China. Both fuses to form a central federal government called the Alliance.
Firefly debuted on the Fox network on September 20, 2002 and was canceled after eleven of the fourteen episodes were aired. Even if the series was short-lived, it received critical acclaim.
In 2003, it won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Special Visual Effects for a Series. It also ranked number 5 on TV Guide’s list of 60 Shows that were Cancelled Too Soon. Shortly thereafter, Universal Pictures produced a film based on the series, entitled Serenity. The Firefly franchise continued expanding to other media, including a role-playing game and comics.
Based on Stephen E. Ambrose’s nonfiction book of the same name, Band of Brothers is a war drama miniseries produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks. It ran on various TV networks all across the globe, but its pilot episodes aired on HBO in 2001.
The show tells the history of the Easy Company, starting on their jump training in the United States, their participation in major actions in Europe until Japan’s admission of defeat. All the events portrayed were based on the recorded interviews with the Easy Company veterans and researches done by Ambrose.
Band of Brothers was HBO’s most expensive television miniseries with a budget of approximately $125 million. While each episode has an average budget of $12.5 million, an additional $15 million was allocated for promotional campaigns.
It stars Dale Dye as Colonel Robert F. Sink, Michael Fassbender as Technical Sergeant Burton Christenson, Frank John Hughes as Staff Sergeant William Guarnere and Tim Matthews as Private First Class Alex Penkala.
The show won several awards at the Primetime Emmy Awards, including Outstanding Miniseries and Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries. Also, it won the Golden Globe for the Best Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for TV.
The comedy-drama TV series, Entourage, premiered on HBO on July 18, 2004. On September 11, 2011, approximately after eight seasons, it concluded. It was largely written and created by Doug Ellin.
The show’s theme deals with real-life situations in modern-day Hollywood and male friendship. It follows the adventures of a young movie star, Vincent Chase, and his childhood friends from Queens, New York City as they try to explore the unfamiliar terrains of Los Angeles, California.
Entourage stars Kevin Connolly, Adrian Grenier, Kevin Dillon, Jerry Ferrara and Jeremy Piven and in every episode, at least one celebrity guest makes an appearance. Among the most noted appearances include Kanye West, Christina Aguilera, Scarlett Johansson, Jessica Alba, James Cameron, Peter Jackson, Matt Damon and LeBron James.
The series received nominations from prestigious award-giving bodies. These include 26 Primetime Emmy Awards, 14 Golden Globes, 4 Writers Guild of America Awards and 6 Screen Actors Guild Awards.
The Sopranos, created by David Chase, is a crime drama TV series revolving on the life of an Italian-American mobster, Tony Soprano. It depicts the challenges he faces as he tries to balance the conflicting requirements of his criminal organization and his home life.
Although the show’s pilot was originally ordered in 1997 on HBO, it premiered on January 10, 1999. It lasted for six seasons with 86 episodes.
The series won a number of awards, including a Peabody Award, five Golden Globe Awards and twenty-one Emmy Awards, making it one of the greatest TV series of all-time. And despite all the controversies, it has spawned books, video games and high-charting soundtrack albums.
24, starring Kiefer Sutherland as Counter Terrorist Unit Agent Jack Bauer, is an American television series produced for the Fox network. The show lasted for 192 episodes for eight seasons. Its season finale aired on the network on May 24, 2010.
Each season has 24 episodes covering the life of Bauer in 24 hours using the real time method of narration. A typical plot involves Bauer racing against time as he attempts to stop various terrorist plots, such as presidential assassination attempts, bioterrorism, cyber attacks and other conspiracies dealing with the government and corporate corruption.
During its season finale, the series became the longest-running U.S. espionage-themed TV drama ever. It also earned critical acclaim, winning lots of awards, including a Golden Globe for Best Drama Series and an Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Series.
A drama series primarily based on character development, Lost contains elements of the supernatural and science fiction. It originally aired on ABC from September 22, 2004 to May 23, 2010 for a total of six seasons or 121 episodes.
The TV drama series follows the lives of the survivors of the commercial passenger jet crash, flying from Sydney to Los Angeles. They find themselves on a mysterious island somewhere in the South Pacific Ocean.
Because of its large ensemble of cast and filming location, the series was named as one of the most expensive TV series. The pilot episode alone costs over $14 million.
Lost has been ranked number on critic’s list of top ten television series of all time. With every episode of the first season, ABC gets an estimated average of 16 million viewers. For its sixth and final season, it averaged to over 11 million viewers.
Also, Lost has been the recipient of several award nominations, including an Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Series, Golden Globe for Best Drama and the British Academy Television Award for Best American Import. The show was recognized by IMDb.com as the highest rated show from 2002 – 2012.
How I Met Your Mother, also abbreviated to HIMYM, is an American sitcom following the life of Ted Mosby and his circle of friends in Manhattan. The show is told in a narrative style, where he recounts to his son and daughter the happenings that led him to meeting their mother.
Created by Carter Bays and Craig Thomas, the series was greatly inspired by their friendship the time when they both lived in New York City. It stars Josh Radnor as Ted Mosby, Jason Segel as Marshall Eriksen, Cobie Smulders as Robin Scherbatsky, Alyson Hannigan as Lily Aldrin and Neil Patrick Harris as Barney Stinson.
Because of its unique story and eccentric humor, the series has gained favorably positive reviews. How I Met Your Mother received nominations at the Emmy Awards, winning nine. Also, it earned Alyson Hannigan a People’s Choice Award for Favorite TV Comedy Actress and Neil Patrick Harris a People’s Choice Award for Favorite TV Comedy Actor.
Created and produced by Vince Gilligan, Breaking Bad is a crime drama TV series that originally aired on the AMC network for five seasons. It follows the story of a struggling chemistry teacher with lung cancer and his former student Jesse Pinkman. The pair turns to a life of crime by producing and selling methamphetamine as a means of securing his family’s financial future.
It stars Bryan Cranston as Walter White, Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman and Anna Gunn as Skyler White, with Dean Norris, Saul Goodman and Betsy Brandt in supporting roles. Its final season introduced more characters, including Jesse Plemons as Todd Alquist and Laura Fraser as Lydia Rodarte-Quayle.
By the time its series finale aired, it became the most-watched cable show in the history of American television. It is even widely regarded as one of the greatest TV series of all time.
Breaking Bad received a multitude of awards, including sixteen Primetime Emmy Awards, eight Satellite Awards, two Peabody Awards, two Golden Globes and a People’s Choice Award. It also earned Cranston four Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series.
The world of television has completely changed over the past few years. As a matter of fact, there is so much variety on TV now that it would be quite hard to pinpoint which shows are the best. Regardless of each one’s favorite, this list includes the most loved TV series of recent times, based on the accolades and viewership.