Welcome to a new feature here at Screen Ramblings: my all-time TV show rankings. Every time I finish a series, I will place it on this list in the appropriate spot. The list is currently divided into three tiers based on series grade, but it's possible I'll add a fourth if required.
Rankings may change over time due to rewatches and/or reevaluations, as well as based on my current mood. As I mentioned in my "Deadwood" post, "The Wire" and "Arrested Development" are in a virtual tie for #1. So it's possible that the latter will be in the top spot the next time I update this list. The same can be said of "The Sopranos" and "BSG" at #6 & #7 respectively. I could have flipped them around and been just as comfortable.
Shows will not change tiers in most cases. Generally, they're where I feel they belong.
So, here are the rankings (with newly added shows in bold, since there may be more than one in some instances):
Please Note: I like all of these shows. I don't watch a show for multiple seasons (as is the case for all but one of these shows) if I don't like it. For instance, just because "Angel" is last on the list doesn't mean I think it's bad. It's an excellent series, as its placement on the B+ tier should prove. I just don't feel it's as good as any of the other shows on this list.
Tier 1 (A)
1. “The Wire”
2. “Arrested Development”
4. “Party Down”*
5. “The Shield”
6. “The Sopranos”
7. “Battlestar Galactica”
Tier 2 (A-)
8. “Slings and Arrows”**
9. “Friday Night Lights”
Tier 3 (B+)
11. “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”
12. "Veronica Mars"
* Yes, "Party Down" is actually that high. I adore that show
** There may be a chance you've never heard of this show, which is a hilarious and heartfelt comedy centered around Shakespearean theatre. It's on Netflix streaming, and if you're looking for something not-too-long to watch this summer (the show only ran 18 episodes) it's well worth checking out.
And just for fun, here's a small sampling of a few of the shows I'm currently covering and where they're likely to end up:
"Breaking Bad" - Tier 1, unless the final seasons are weak (which at this point I highly doubt).
"Mad Men" - Tier 2 for now, but it could move up if the final 2-3 seasons are as good as season four.
"The Office" - Tier 3. These last two seasons cost it a spot on a higher tier, unfortunately.
"Parks and Recreation" - Tier 1 currently, but it could always falter like "The Office" has.
"Modern Family" - Tier 2 at this moment, but my gut says that it will end up on tier 3.