Heretic's Top 10 TV Series
9 8.8 7.31. Three Kingdoms (2010)
The 2010 production of Three Kingdoms is quite possibly the greatest dramatic television series ever made. Spanning an incredible 95 episodes, it is wonderfully written, beautifully acted and action packed. The set pieces and production values are amazing, and it covers 50+ years of the legendary Three Kingdoms period of ancient China. If you are a fan of action epics or costume dramas, this is a must watch. You can find an excellent fan sub of this series online, translated by the Jiang Hu group.
2096 7.7 8.72. The X Files (1993)
The series that revolutionized science fiction and dramatic television. My five stars apply to the amazing seasons 1-5. Season 6 was a mixed bag and is where X-Files started to falter, in my opinion. Season 7 was bad. Seasons 8 and 9 were unwatchable. Despite the fact that Fox ran this show into the ground, the first half of the series is a near flawless drama full of intrigue, mystery, horror and dark comedy. The sheer atmosphere that X-Files created has yet to be surpassed and probably never will be.
367 6.9 7.93. Babylon 5 (1994)
Star Trek was always a silly (if popular) television behemoth, but it never truly LOOKED silly until Babylon 5 came along in the mid 90s and became the true king of space opera. Babylon 5 was everything that Star Trek wasn't: gritty and dark (rather than idealistic), grounded in real science (instead of magical technology), and even more importantly, it had a story worth telling. It was a planned five year plot arc with lengthy setups and huge payoffs rather than the typical "moral of the day" bullshit that Star Trek had been doing forever. If you're a sci-fi fan and you haven't yet seen Babylon 5, you owe it to yourself to watch this magnificent series and to be patient while it crafts its ideas, builds its themes and carves its dramatic path to an epic climax and resolution.
1035 7.9 8.94. Rome (2005)
The finest historical drama I've had the pleasure to watch, "Rome" covers the rise and fall of Julius Ceasar, the descent of the Roman republic into a totalitarian state, and the rise of Emperor Octavian. This series had an assortment of true historical characters and fictional ones, but they were all played to perfection. Sadly, this epic drama ended after only two seasons due to budget constraints, but what an excellent ride it was!
1358 7.7 8.75. Battlestar Galactica (2004)
This series had just about everything going for it. Great dialogue, amazing performances, epic music, excellent sets, costumes and CG. It was an improvement over the original series in every way possible. Unfortunately, the one thing it lacked was the promise that was made about the Cylons in the intro of every episode: "And they have a plan..." But they didn't have a plan because the writers didn't have a plan, and when you don't plan your plot out in advance you eventually end up with plot holes and a total train wreck of a final season. The disappointing season 4 aside, BSG was an excellent show and the first good sci-fi television to come along in five years.
230 6.8 7.86. Millennium (1996)
From the creators of The X-Files... a dark man with a mysterious gift. Killers, mad men, the occult, webs of conspiracy and the impending apocalypse. What's not to love?!? An impressive series that ended too soon and never got the respect it deserved.
1572 8.9 9.47. Game of Thrones (2011)
An epic fantasy series that just about everyone is watching. So far, it's been excellent in almost every regard. If I had to pick a flaw, it's that the sexual content feels a little forced and/or immature at times, giving the show a bit of a soap opera feel. Thankfully, that feeling doesn't last and the excellent writing and engaging plot trump the frivolous softcore scenes.
639 8.3 8.78. Boardwalk Empire (2010)
There are no heroes, only anti-heroes in this gritty, complex historical drama about crime and power in Atlantic City. Superb performances and production values. I can't wait to see where it goes!
1493 8.2 8.79. The Walking Dead (2010)
The zombie apocalypse done right? I was shocked at first and remain pleasantly surprised. This gem of a series started to falter a bit in the first half of season two, but thankfully it picked itself up in the second half. I'm eagerly awaiting the third season of this intense, apocalyptic drama.
1077 8.7 9.410. Breaking Bad (2008)
A show about an asshole doing morally dubious things so he can sustain his pathetic ego. And yet, it's massively compelling. Producer Vince Gilligan earned his wings by working on The X-Files and it shows in this well written, intense drama about a narcissistic chemistry wizard who just can't help himself.
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