Stargate:Universe is just latest in a long line of sci-fi and fantasy TV shows to get me hooked. I originally ran this list on my High Gravity blog, but here it is with a bit of tweaking. And apologies to all Babylon 5 fans; it's still not on among the Top 10.
10. Dr. Who
Originally launched in 1963, The
Doctor has once-again returned to the TV screen, traveling through time
and space in the TARDIS, an antiquated and surprisingly spacious blue
police box. The special effects may have gotten marginally better, but
the camp has stayed the same. Recent spin-offs
including the highly addictive (though strangely both campy and serious) Torchwood.
9. Stargate SG-1
Based on a mediocre movie with a
good premise—that all of our mythology was the result of alien contact
with our ancestors—the 10 seasons of SG-1 brought back good clean star
trekking fun, complete with its own Spock (Teal'c) and a team leader
played by MacGyver. Stargate:Atlantis has kept the spirit of its predecessor alive and well.
"My name is John Crichton, an
astronaut. A radiation wave hit and I got
shot through a wormhole. Now I'm lost in some distant part of the
universe on a ship, a living ship, full of strange alien life forms.
Help me. Listen, please. Is anybody out there who can hear me? I'm
being hunted... by an insane military commander. I'm doing everything I
can. I'm just looking for a way home." So begins the adventures of a
modern man from earth, where some of the creatures look a lot like
muppets (it's a Jim Henson production, after all). Like Lexx
without all the sexual innuendo, a group of refugees are forced to
coexist aboard a living ship. It's dark without being dreary.
Leave it to Joss Whedon to dream up
a space show without aliens. The smart writing he brought to Buffy
turned the universe into one big frontier, where those who didn't
conform to authoritarian rule were forced to eke out their livings
among outlying planets where the long arm of the law can't follow.
Watch the way-too-short lived series in full before finishing with
6. The Twilight Zone
Criminally left off the original list, Rod Sterling's original series burned itself into the imaginations of generations of sci-fi fans, getting revived in the '80s and the '00s and inspiring countless plotlines in many of the other shows on this list.