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Badmovies.org Forum  |  Other Topics  |  Television  |  WGA 101 Best Written TV Shows Ever « previous next »
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Author Topic: WGA 101 Best Written TV Shows Ever  (Read 1134 times)
ER
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« on: June 03, 2013, 05:10:05 PM »

Although I'd disagree with a lot of their selections, the Writer's Guild of America just released a list of the top 101 TV series of all time, based on a poll conducted among its membership.

A link to a good article about it, with the complete list:

www.hitfix.com/whats-alan-watching/dont-stop-believin-the-sopranos-tops-wga-list-of-101-best-written-tv-shows-ever


And the top twenty-five:

1. "The Sopranos"
2. "Seinfeld"
3. "The Twilight Zone" (1959)
4. "All in the Family"
5. "M*A*S*H"
6. "The Mary Tyler Moore Show"
7. "Mad Men"
8. "Cheers"
9. "The Wire"
10. "The West Wing"
11. "The Simpsons"
12. "I Love Lucy"
13. "Breaking Bad"
14. "The Dick Van Dyke Show"
15. "Hill Street Blues"
16. "Arrested Development"
17. "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart"
18. "Six Feet Under"
19. "Taxi"
20. "The Larry Sanders Show"
21. "30 Rock"
22. "Friday Night Lights"
23. "Frasier"
24. "Friends"
25. "Saturday Night Live"
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« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2013, 10:45:51 AM »

Frasier, The Wire and Arrested Development should be higher.
Mad Men and All in the Family should be lower.
I don't think Friends or Modern Family need to be on the list at all.
Mystery Science Theater 3000 and King of The Hill should be on the list and The Muppet Show should be way higher.


It's a decent mix, though, for the most part.
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tracy
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« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2013, 01:41:10 PM »

I generally disagree with lists like these and this one is no exception...."Seinfeld" a better written show than "M*A*S*H" or "Frasier"? Not in my book. Lookingup
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« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2013, 11:00:05 AM »

I generally disagree with lists like these and this one is no exception...."Seinfeld" a better written show than "M*A*S*H" or "Frasier"? Not in my book. Lookingup

Not in terms of narrative, but it is one of the most quoted/memorable shows of all time.  I wouldn't have ranked it over M*A*S*H (or Twilight Zone, for that matter) but certainly top 10. 
Mad Men over The Wire and Breaking Bad though, that's total BS.

And I don't see Futurama on there.  Not cool, WGA.
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BoyScoutKevin
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« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2013, 01:50:38 PM »

And while I only saw 17 of the shows listed, on a regular basis, I don't think the list is that bad.

I do have two problems with it. We have . . .

02. Seinfeld (comedy) with . . .
10. The West Wing (drama) with . . .
11. The Simpsons (animated) with . . .
17. The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (talk) with . . .
25. Saturday Night Live (variety) with . . .
26. The X-Files (sci fi/horror) with . . .
57. Columbo (mystery) with . . .
62. Roots (miniseries) with . . .
81. Gunsmoke (western) 

Plus half hour shows with hour and longer shows.
American shows with British shows.
Book adaptations with original scripts.

All of which require their own style of writing. Thus, I'd have felt better if they had arranged the list under type of show such as comedy and comedy, drama and drama, then the way they did.

Also this list has the same problem that confronts most lists. Most of these shows are the better known ones, which edge out the more obscure shows. Though, the more obscure shows may be the better written. For example: the better known "Gunsmoke" may be a well written western, but better than the more obscure western "Maverick." The original. I don't think so. Not when "Maverick" continuously won the Emmy for Best Western, when there was an Emmy for Best Western. And "When I was a child, I thought as a child." When I saw "Maverick" as a child, I liked it for its action and its humor, but, when I saw it as an adult, I liked it for its acting and the scripts, which I thought were quite well written.
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« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2013, 02:45:13 PM »


Mystery Science Theater 3000... should be on the list...


Good catch. The WGA may have forgotten about it because it was made by Hollywood outsiders and it was mostly non-narrative writing, but that staff still cranked out some of the best one-liners ever.
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« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2013, 06:07:58 PM »

No Outer Limits (original)? Doctor Who? Avengers? Wild Wild West? Red Dwarf? Man From UNCLE?

Really?

Undeniably, there are some great shows named but they show a real lack of disregard for stuff from the 60s-70s, especially British stuff.
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« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2013, 06:48:38 PM »

This looks like it was moshed together from a poll of anyone whose ever watched TV.
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« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2013, 04:21:39 PM »

Simpsons has some class writing. I kinda want it higher, but 11 seems ok.
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« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2013, 04:54:15 PM »

Obviousely, the shows I like should be higher, and the shows I dislike should be lower.  Wink

This looks like it was moshed together from a poll of anyone whose ever watched TV.
Yep, it's just a poll.
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« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2013, 08:34:49 PM »

"I Love Lucy" is the best thing TV ever came up with. 
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« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2013, 12:51:20 PM »

"I Love Lucy" is the best thing TV ever came up with.  

I've probably watched every episode of "I Love Lucy" a hundred times or more and it never ceases to be funny. It's a perfect example of how a show can be clever,hilarious,crazy and entertaining without foul language,pointless sex or tons of one liners and insults. There just isn't much out there as good as Lucy anymore.

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« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2013, 08:56:40 PM »

"I Love Lucy" is the best thing TV ever came up with.  
I've probably watched every episode of "I Love Lucy" a hundred times or more and it never ceases to be funny. It's a perfect example of how a show can be clever,hilarious,crazy and entertaining without foul language,pointless sex or tons of one liners and insults. There just isn't much out there as good as Lucy anymore.
Well, we agree on that, too. 
I go thru phases where I don't look at it for a decade or so, having seen them all.  Then, like about a year ago, I'll watch a rerun every night for a week or two... I rediscover it.  I always laugh.  It's like meeting old friends unexpectedly and you find that everything is the same, nothing has changed, we all still make each other laugh and love one another.  Though there is some great writing and directing on "I Love Lucy" what makes that TV show superior, the best, is the enormous talent of its four principles.  What a funny, talented, engaging, charming group of actors. 
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