Top Twelve Favourite Television Dramas

“Top Ten Tuesday” is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish!



This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic is the Top Twelve Favourite Television Dramas.

Believe me when I tell you that this week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompts was one of the most difficult I’ve encountered yet. I spent far longer than any reasonably sane individual would mulling over my choices (See: Hours) and in the end decided to go with a very specific interpretation so that my list wasn’t closer to a ‘Top One Hundred’ instead. (You’re welcome) For those of you who don’t know, I’m a self-proclaimed television addict. During an average TV season I likely watch at least twelve-fourteen hours of television a week. Yes, really.

Please note that this is not a complete list of my favourite television dramas. Even after increasing the number to twelve rather than ten, there are a number of glaring omissions. Some, like Band of Brothers and True Detective, I consider to be ‘mini-series’ as opposed to a traditional television series, and were therefore disqualified due to a technicality. Others, like Deadwood and Friday Night Lights, simply did not make the cut through no fault of their own. While I love them, I’m not as passionate about them as the twelve shows I finally chose. Now, that isn’t to say that I believe that any of the television series below are perfect. One only need look at Dexter‘s final season to dispute that. But even at their very worst, these twelve shows were still better than 95% of what was airing at that time. I consider these series standouts in their field and have re-watched each of them more times than I could possibly count. Thank you for episodes like ‘Hush’, ‘Not Pictured’, ‘Pine Barrens’, ‘Margate Sands’ and ‘Everyone’s Waiting’. Thank you for characters like Carrie Mathison, Buffy Summers, Veronica Mars, Omar Little and Richard Harrow. Thank you for couples like Buffy/Spike, Logan/Veronica, Luther/Alice and Pete/Peggy. In short? I tip my proverbial hat to each and every one of these shows and only hope that you too have been lucky enough to experience them firsthand. If not, what are you waiting for?

As always, these choices are listed in no particular order.

1) Dexter (2006-2013)
Starring: Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, James Remar, et al.

2) Buffy The Vampire Slayer (1997-2003)
Starring: Sarah Michelle Gellar, Anthony Head, Alyson Hannigan, Nicholas Brendon, et al.

3) Six Feet Under (2001-2005)
Starring: Peter Krause, Michael C. Hall, Lauren Ambrose, Frances Conroy, et al.

4) Homeland (2011-Present)
Starring: Claire Danes, Damian Lewis, Mandy Patinkin, et al.

5) Veronica Mars (2004-2007)
Starring: Kristen Bell, Jason Dohring, Enrico Colantoni, Percy Daggs III, et al.

6) Justified (2010-Present)
Starring: Timothy Olyphant, Walton Goggins, Nick Searcy, Joelle Carter, et al.

7) Southland (2009-2013)
Starring: Ben McKenzie, Michael Cudlitz, Shawn Hatosy, Regina King, et al.

8) The Wire (2002-2008)
Starring: Dominic West, Wendell Pierce, Lance Reddick, Michael K. Williams, Idris Elba, et al.

9) Luther (2010-2013)
Starring: Idris Elba, Ruth Wilson, Warren Brown, et al.

10) The Sopranos (1999-2007)
Starring: James Gandolfini, Edie Falco, Lorraine Bracco, Michael Imperioli, et al.

11) Mad Men (2007-Present)
Starring: Jon Hamm, Elisabeth Moss, Vincent Kartheiser, January Jones, Christina Hendricks, et al.

12) Boardwalk Empire (2010-Present)
Starring: Steve Buscemi, Michael K. Williams, Vincent Piazza, Stephen Graham, Kelly Macdonald, et al.

18 responses to “Top Twelve Favourite Television Dramas”

  1. I think the only show on this list that I’ve watched is Buffy… =) But I really love Buffy!
    Nobody@The Story Goes… recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday #22 Top Ten All Time Favorite TV ShowsMy Profile

  2. Melody says:

    You have no idea how exciting it is to see Southland on your list! I could count the people I knew who watched and loved that show on one hand when it was on haha so really happy to see this make your list!
    Melody recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Movie & TV Blogger BitsMy Profile

  3. I used to adore Buffy. I’m really craving a re-watch now. Fantastic list!
    Chrissi Reads recently posted…Top Ten Theatre ShowsMy Profile

  4. I haven’t seen Veronica Mars yet. I’m now scourging for DVD sets of the entire series before I watch the movie.

    My TTT
    Camille @ Girl meets Books recently posted…Review: JELLICOE ROAD by Melina MarchettaMy Profile

  5. Genevieve says:

    I keep meaning to try Luther but haven’t got around to it yet. I think it’s on Netflix UK so I might seek it out and give it a go.

  6. Amy says:

    I got obsessed with Dexter for a bit. Such a creepy show!
    Amy recently posted…The Top Ten TV Shows. Or. My memories of the last four yearsMy Profile

  7. Milka says:

    The Wire and Veronica Mars are definitely ones I am the most interested about from this list – I’ve heard such good things about both!
    Great list! 🙂
    Milka recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday (#17)My Profile

  8. Great list! 🙂 After reading everybody’s lists today, I feel like Buffy is a must watch!
    Betty’s Books recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten TV ShowsMy Profile

  9. Krista says:

    BUFFY! Everyone needs to watch this show and everything else Joss Wheadon has made.

    TTT @ Krista’s Dust Jacket

  10. Andi says:

    I was SO sad when they canceled Southland! I loved that show so much. It was so gritty and had great acting. And yah for another Dexter lover. Although the John Lithgow season was the best and I HATED the finale tons.

    Great list.
    Andi recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday – Favorite TV ShowsMy Profile

  11. BUFFY! I came so close to adding that one to my list. So good! I love that I’ve seen several people with it today!

    Also love Veronica Mars and what I’ve seen of Mad Men! I have no desire to watch Boardwalk Empire, but that image you chose for it is AWESOME.
    Sharon @ The Book Barbies recently posted…Our Top Ten Favorite Television ShowsMy Profile

  12. I don’t watch too much drama on TV. I’m more of a comedy or dramedy person. Although I adore Veronica Mars! Definitely a favorite TV show.
    Quinn @ Quinn’s Book Nook recently posted…Top Ten Disney Animated MoviesMy Profile

  13. Casee Marie says:

    LUTHER. I started watching it literally right before the third series and it was one of those bittersweet things because I binge-watched my way through the whole show in no time. Luther/Alice was the BEST.

    And I love Mad Men! Six Feet Under, Dexter, and Boardwalk Empire were all shows I started but never finished; I really need to get back to them. And I’ve heard so many great things about Homeland and Justified! (Netflix is failing me a bit with not having any of these on streaming, ahh.)

  14. Girl, you watch a lot of intense drama TV! haha I have not seen most of these, but that’s mainly due to not having cable. However I got really excited when I saw Six Feet Under on your list. Still one of my most favorite series finales ever. I’m sad Fright Night Lights didn’t make your cut 🙁 Oh how I adore that show. That really IS small town life in Texas, centered around their football program. Coah & Tami Taylor are THE show though. The best, ever.
    Ginger @ GReads! recently posted…My Top Ten TV Shows I Watched When I Was A Teen(ish)My Profile

  15. I really enjoy Justified. I am sad that there is only one more season. That is a total bummer. But I suppose it’s time. Don’t want to keep it going too long past it’s prime.
    Angie @Angela’s Anxious Life recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday – TV ShowsMy Profile

  16. I have never seen Buffy. I am watching Veronica Mars now (5 episodes in and loving it!). I think Buffy is next.
    Alison (@AlisonCanRead) recently posted…GIVEAWAY! Blog Tour Review: Breathe, Annie, Breathe by Miranda KenneallyMy Profile

  17. Alexa S. says:

    Buffy the Vampire Slayer! I kind of want to watch it again after seeing it mentioned so frequently in the community recently. While my husband’s love for the series is far greater than mine, I still really enjoyed it, characters, story and all.
    Alexa S. recently posted…Breathe Annie Breathe – Miranda Kenneally (Review)My Profile

  18. I agree with so many of your choices, but my favourites on your list are Buffy, Homeland, and Dexter – such amazing shows.
    Carolyn (Book Chick City) recently posted…REVIEW: Not Quite Perfect by Annie LyonsMy Profile

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