Fifty Best Sci-Fi Shows

Wednesday, October 26th 2005

(2 comments) has a feature on the fifty best Sci-Fi shows of all time, and of course, I've got to comment.

I was a big fan of The Greatest American Hero while it was out - you know, the show about the teacher who's given a supersuit that grants him powers and then loses the all-important instructions? I loved that show.

I also liked Alien Nation a lot. The premise: a huge colony ship, populated by a race of escaped slaves, lands in Los Angeles. The 'Newcomers' are accepted into human society, although there is a lot of prejudice. They are smarter and stronger than humans, but they get drunk on spoiled milk, and salt water is like hydrocloric acid to them. The show focused on George Fransisco, who becomes a police officer and is paired with a man who overcomes his xenophobia. It played out like a cop show, but in a sci-fi world. Good show.

Quantum Leap is another show I loved. It reminded me a bit of "Voyagers" in that the protagonists leaped into different periods in history, although Quantum Leap's Dr. Sam Beckett was limited to leaping within his own lifetime. The show also included Dean Stockwell, which was also a plus.

Anyone remember 'V'? Looking back, the special effects are laughable, but I remember loving the show. It's a good old alien invasion - the aliens want to steal the planet's resources. But the lizardlike aliens disguise themselves as humanlike. I remember that the human rebels' main goal was to expose the lizard-faces rather than exposing their evil goals. Seems odd.

Everyone is raving about Firefly right now, due to the Serenity movie, but I could never get into the show. I guess the space-western thing just doesn't do it for me. You can move the New Englander to the Western setting, but you can't make the New Englander like Westerns.

Xena is a show I only ever watched because I was forced to. And I was forced to in a way few people are: it was my job. I worked at the FOX affiliate in Hartford and broadcast the stupid thing. No, I don't like Xena. But apparently some astronomers do - scientists recently named the 10th planet 'Xena', and named its moon 'Gabrielle'.

It's nice to see that Lost made eleventh place, but I'm a bit sad that The 4400 didn't make the list.

Battlestar Galactica is one of my favorite shows, and I think it's awesome that it made #2 on the list, despite the tendency of some to refer to the show as GiNO. They've really done a lot of excellent things with the show, and I'm very much looking forward to its comeback from its mid-season hiatus.

The only Star Trek I've ever been a huge fan of was Next Generation. I got a bit into Deep Space Nine at one point, but never as much. I might have gotten interested in Voyager, but what really ruined it was when they took the Borg, which was Star Trek's biggest baddest most undefeatable enemy, and turned them into wusses. All the crew had to do to beat them in Voyager was invert the polarity on the warp coil or reconfigure the nassels to emit a inverse tachyon field. Meh.

And where the frell is Farscape??

50. Earth - Final Conflict
49. The Wild Wild West
48. 3rd Rock From The Sun
47. Buck Rogers in the 25th Century
46. That Was Then
45. The Greatest American Hero
44. Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman
43. Nowhere Man
42. Science Fiction Theatre
41. Futarama
40. The Thunderbirds
39. The Man from U.N.C.L.E.
38. Batman
37. Space 1999
36. The Bionic Woman
35. Battlestar Galactica (original)
34. The Avengers
33. Lost In Space
32. My Favorite Martian
31. Alien Nation
30. Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea
29. The Six Million Dollar Man
28. Adventures of Superman
27. Buffy the Vampire Slayer
26. Stargate Atlantis
25. The Jetsons
24. Wonder Woman
23. Tales from the Crypt
22. Andromeda
21. Quantum Leap
20. The Hitchhiker
19. Dark Angel
18. V
17. Firefly
16. Flash Gordon
15. Logan's Run
14. Star Trek Voyager
13. The Outer Limits
12. Xena: Warrior Princess
11. Lost
10. Sliders
9. MST3K
8. Dr. Who
7. The Twilight Zone
6. Stargate SG-1
5. Babylon 5
4. The X-Files
3. Star Trek: TNG
2. Battlestar Galactica (New)
1. Star Trek: ToS
Comments on Fifty Best Sci-Fi Shows
Comment Wednesday, October 26th 2005 by tagger
As someone who's been reading Science Fiction since ninteen-fifty-something, I've got to throw in my two cents.

The term "Sci-fi" was originally coined in 1954 by Forrest J. Ackerman (see:, who thought it was a Good Thing. To most professional writers and fans, however, "Sci-fi" is synonymous with "drek" (if you don't speak Yiddish, look at So, that pretty much includes 90% of everything on television.

That said, there has been some pretty good stuff on the air over the years. I don't expect, however, that you're ever going to get any two people to agree on what's good and what's bad, though.
Comment Thursday, October 27th 2005 by magus2
50. Earth - Final Conflict - fine
49. The Wild Wild West - ok
48. 3rd Rock From The Sun - um, no
47. Buck Rogers in the 25th Century - should be higher, good choice
46. That Was Then - don't know it
45. The Greatest American Hero - pushing it for being sci-fi, but ok
44. Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman - not sci-fi
43. Nowhere Man - don't know it
42. Science Fiction Theatre - ok
41. Futarama - um, no
40. The Thunderbirds - some like it, ok
39. The Man from U.N.C.L.E. - spy show, but ok
38. Batman - not sci-fi, like at all
37. Space 1999 - good pick
36. The Bionic Woman - ok
35. Battlestar Galactica (original) - nice
34. The Avengers - spy show, not ok
33. Lost In Space - yeah
32. My Favorite Martian - oh yeah again
31. Alien Nation - crazy yeahs
30. Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea - ok
29. The Six Million Dollar Man - sure
28. Adventures of Superman - um, no
27. Buffy the Vampire Slayer - magic vampires = sci-fi = NOT!
26. Stargate Atlantis - ok
25. The Jetsons - ok
24. Wonder Woman - what? no and I love this show, not sci-fi
23. Tales from the Crypt - no
22. Andromeda - ok
21. Quantum Leap - oh yeah
20. The Hitchhiker - no
19. Dark Angel - no
18. V - ok, I dig it
17. Firefly - watched in the right order (not the aired order) good show
16. Flash Gordon - ok, didn't see this on tv though
15. Logan's Run - movie great, didn't see tv show
14. Star Trek Voyager - yeah, i guess
13. The Outer Limits - yeah
12. Xena: Warrior Princess - FANTASY
11. Lost - yet to see sci-fi elements, but ok since it's good
10. Sliders - top 10 for sure
9. MST3K - NO
8. Dr. Who - top 10
7. The Twilight Zone - top 10
6. Stargate SG-1 - longest running sci-fi, good
5. Babylon 5 - gets somewhere in top 3 for me
4. The X-Files - ok
3. Star Trek: TNG - yes
2. Battlestar Galactica (New) - top 3
1. Star Trek: ToS - goofy, but top 3 anyway
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