The 75 Best TV Shows on Netflix (Fall 2016)

TV Lists Netflix
The 75 Best TV Shows on Netflix (Fall 2016)

Scattered among the best TV shows on Netflixare more and more of the company’s own original series. TV watching on  Netflixhas progressively gotten better as the streaming service has added to its impressive catalog of network and cable TV shows, along with  Netflix originals, like the superb eight-episode run of Stranger Things. Indeed, the company which spent its formative years as primarily a way to watch movies has fully transitioned into the world’s primary TV-binge-watching enabler.

Our list of the best TV shows on Netflixis here to help you find that next TV series to devour, and we’ve looked through the enormous catalog to find these recommendations. This is based on  Netflix in the USA. Some you’ll already know and have probably already watched, but others were hidden gems on small networks or made for foreign audiences.

Also see The Best Movies on Netflix, The Best TV Shows on Hulu, The Best TV Shows on Amazon Prime and The Best HBO Series.

Here are the 75 Best TV Shows on Netflix:

75. Sense8

Creators: The Wachowskis, J. Michael Straczynski
Stars: Tuppence Middleton, Brian J. Smith, Doona Bae, Aml Ameen, Max Riemelt, Tina Desai, Miguel Ángel Silvestre, Jamie Clayton, Freema Agyeman, Terrence Mann, Anupam Kher, Naveen Andrews, Daryl Hannah
Network: Netflix Original
There is no bigger WTF TV show in the world right now than Sense8. This globe-trotting and glitzy sci-fi series, created by Lana and Lily Wachowski (co-directors of The Matrix trilogy) and former Babylon 5 showrunner J. Michael Straczynski, drops us into a world where eight strangers in different parts of the planet are somehow psychically and emotionally linked. Through the first season’s 12 episodes, we follow this assortment of confused and beautiful people as they try to understand this connection, use their newfound abilities to help one another out, and engage in a raging, somewhat unintentional orgy. As wacky and over-the-top as Sense8 can often get, the series remains important as it deals with important issues of sexuality and identity through the work of trans actress Jamie Clayton and the relationship that the show’s character Lito gets into involving his longtime partner and a female friend.—Robert Ham

74. Roseanne

Creator: Matt Williams
Stars: Roseanne Barr, John Goodman, Laurie Metcalf, Sara Gilbert, Michael Fishman, Lecy Goranson, Sarah Chalke, Sandra Bernhard, Martin Mull
Network: ABC
Appearing near the tail end of the ’80s, Roseanne presented a monumental shift in the depiction of the American family. Like Married…with Children, which had premiered a year-and-a-half beforehand, it was a show with real bite, as evidenced by star Roseanne Barr’s stand-up material. Unlike the Fox program, however, the stories of Roseanne and Dan Conner and their rambunctious kids were almost always rooted in heart. In a landscape filled with pretty people and their petty problems, Roseanne chose to tackle the realities of a blue-collar family struggling to get by. Besides highlighting a side of America not seen since the heyday of Norman Lear, the show also used its primetime platform to discuss controversial issues of birth control, drug abuse and homosexuality. And though the show’s much maligned final season did not sit well with most audiences, one cannot deny that Roseanne was, like its titular character, bold and uncompromising.—Mark Rozeman

73. iZombie

Creator: Rob Thomas, Diane Ruggiero
Stars: Rose McIver, Malcolm Goodwin, Rahul Kohli, Robert Buckley, David Anders, Aly Michalka, Aleks Paunovic, Hiro Kanagawa
Network: CW
 Buffy the Vampire Slayer meets Veronica Mars is the best way to describe this delightful drama. iZombie, from Mars creator Rob Thomas, draws on the strengths of both of these iconic series while carving a distinct path for itself. Liv Moore (Rose McIver) was a promising medical student until one bad night of partying turned her into a zombie. Now she works in the morgue solving murders on the side, all while keeping the true nature of her condition from her loved ones (she’s not that pale because she uses sunscreen people). As the second season progressed, more were let in on Liv’s secret and she assembled a Scooby gang of her very own, while struggling to protect those that she loves. Much of the show’s success stems from its great sense of humor—witness all the delectable ways Liv serves up brains. But the ghoulish and voracious zombies offer real frights and Steven Weber’s nefarious CEO Vaughn Du Clark is truly terrifying. However it’s the show’s overarching premise—that any of us could find ourselves among the undead trying to control our most basic instincts while our normal life remains just out of our grasp—that will keep you up at night.—Amy Amatangelo

72. Dollhouse

Creator:   Joss Whedon
Stars: Eliza Dushku, Harry Lennix, Fran Kranz, Tahmoh Penikett, Enver Gjokaj, Dichen Lachman, Olivia Williams
Original Network: Fox
Between Buffy and The Avengers, Joss Whedon had a habit of creating good shows that got canceled too soon. Dollhouse was no Firefly, but after a weak first season that focused on singular missions from Eliza Dushku’s character, it expanded into a fascinating sci-fi universe. The premise of the show was that brain-wiping technology could allow the techs of the Dollhouse to install different personalities and skills in their blank-slate agents. In the first season, this just felt weirdly exploitative for the viewer, but the sweeping arc of the second season began to question the ethics of imagined technologies and turn the first season’s plotlines on their heads. And the payoff was huge with an epic two-episode apocalyptic flash-forward that ended each season, starring Felicia Day as a survivor of the Dollhouse technology gone viral.—Josh Jackson

71. Jane the Virgin

Creator: Jennie Snyder Urman
Stars: Gina Rodriguez, Justin Baldoni, Yeal Grobglas, Jaime Camil, Andrea Navedo, Ivonne Coll, Anthony Mendez
Original Network: CW
A virgin perfectionist with a heart of gold shouldn’t be this watchable. However, add a pinch of the ol’ impregnated-by-artificial-insemination storyline, mixed in with the possible threat of a grandmother’s deportation, all while the protagonist is trying to rock both a writing career and motherhood, and you’ve got one of the most fascinating TV characters of the year. What’s great about Jane is that she handles everything with an impressive sensibility, and you can’t help but fall for her optimistic outlook on life. If there’s a will, there’s a way and Jane takes the cards she’s dealt in life, and never forgets or forsakes the deep goodness Abuela instilled within her. We watched as this character celebrated life’s big moments with everything from dance-offs to earnest weeping, without any embarrassment for her vulnerability—but don’t get on her bad side. The second season of Jane the Virgin has treated us to an even more protective Jane who will swiftly go to battle for the people she loves.—Iris A. Barreto

70. Halt and Catch Fire

Creator: Christopher Cantwell, Christopher C. Rogers
Stars: Lee Pace, Scoot McNairy, Mackenzie Davis, Kerry Bishé, Toby Huss, Aleksa Palladino
Original Network: AMC
In the past decade, television has explored a vast array of different narratives and characters. Unfortunately, the overriding theme of this most recent Golden Age would still read something along the lines of “White Men and Their Problems.” Here is where AMC’s ratings-troubled, yet phenomenal drama Halt & Catch Fire becomes essential viewing. The show’s first season positioned Donna as a brilliant engineer, stuck in the role of under-appreciated 1980s housewife. By season’s end, she (and, by extension, Kerry Bishé’s portrayal) had emerged as one of the series’ most potent creations. Going into the second year, the Halt team wisely choose to push Donna into a more managerial position, resulting in some of 2015’s best TV moments. To be clear, Donna is a strong character not because of her technological expertise (though that’s certainly a factor), but because of how she fights to keep her dignity intact despite her life collapsing around her. She’s tangible proof that one doesn’t need a troubled antihero to make a show work; rather, you only need great writing and the proper performer to bring it to life.—Mark Rozeman

69. Torchwood

Creator: Russel T. Davies
Stars: John Barrowman, Eve Myles, Bum Gorman, Naoko Mori, Gareth David-Lloyd, Freema Agyeman, Bill Pullman
Original Network: BBC
A spin-off of long-running BBC series Doctor Who, Torchwood retained some of its predecessor’s campy fun, but also seemed to be reaching for the gritty realism that had understandably escaped most sci-fi shows until Ronald D. Moore’s Battlestar Galactica remake redefined what sci-fi could be. By the second season, creator Russel T. Davies seemed to conclude that Torchwood would be better suited to leave the frivolity for the good Doctor, and let Harkness go to darker places. The five-episode story-arc “Children of the Earth,” is a nail-biting, epic story that never lets up and finishes with its biggest punch to the gut. Like Moore’s Battlestar Galactica, Davies has not only reimagined a classic series, he’s used his new extraterrestrial platform to explore human nature.—Josh Jackson

68. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

Creators: Rachel Bloom, Aline Brosh McKenna
Stars: Rachel Bloom, Vincent Rodriguez III, Santino Fontana, Donna Lynne Champlin, Pete Gardner, Vella Lovell, Gabrielle Ruiz
Original Network: The CW
Don’t let the name keep you from tuning into this one—creator/star Rachel Bloom (who was recently nominated for a Golden Globe for her work on the show) addresses it before the theme song’s even over, responding to choruses of “she’s the crazy ex-girlfriend” with lines like “that’s a sexist term” and “the situation’s more nuanced than that.” And it is: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is a clever musical-comedy (think Flight of the Conchords, if they leaned more heavily on musical theater) about Rebecca Bunch, a lawyer who turns down a partnership at her New York firm to follow her ex-boyfriend Josh to West Covina, California and try to win him back. But it’s more complicated than that: along the way Rebecca learns to address some of the neuroses she’s been carrying around since childhood and gets sidetracked (depending on how you look at it) by a sort of Sam and Diane “will they/won’t they” thing with Josh’s friend Greg. Her “crazy” is sometimes funny, sometimes sad, but always presented smartly and sensitively—never what you might expect from a show called Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.—Bonnie Stiernberg

67. The Boondocks

Creator: Aaron McGruder
Stars: Regina King, John Witherspoon, Cedric Yarbrough, Gary Anthony Williams, Jill Talley
Original Network: Adult Swim
Based on writer, producer and cartoonist Aaron McGruder’s popular comic strip of the same name, The Boondocks’ four season, 55-episode run saw brothers Huey and Riley—transplants of inner city Chicago—navigate black culture in the fictional white suburb of Woodcrest. Part of Cartoon Network’s late-night comedy block on Adult Swim, the series was a brazen attack on the white American establishment and an unabashedly black satire that honed in on the complicated conversations surrounding racial identity, stereotypes, class, celebrity and viewpoint. From November 2005 to the end of its run in June 2014, the series unquestionably earned its reputation as one of the most controversial and culturally significant pieces of modern American comedy through its unapologetic approach to blackness, painfully honest humor, and clever subversion of traditional cultural dialogue.—Abbey White

66. Scrubs

Creator: Bill Lawrence
Stars: Zach Braff, Sarah Chalke, Donald Faison, Neil Flynn, Ken Jenkins, John C. McGinley, Judy Reyes
Original Network: NBC
J.D. and the gang gave a completely absurd (and yet often the most realistic) look into the world of hospitals. Each episode didn’t center around some outlandish disease that everyone thought was lupus, only to find out it was something else in the last five minutes of the show. Instead Scrubs was character-driven. It was consistently overlooked by the Emmy Awards, and viewership dwindled throughout the seasons. Still, the witty writing and off-beat characters deserved more. When NBC canceled the show, ABC was confident enough to pick it up for two more (laborious, unwatchable) seasons. But in its prime, it was one of the best sitcoms on TV.—Adam Vitcavage

65. The Wonder Years

Creators: Carol Black, Neal Marlens
Stars: Fred Savage, Dan Lauria, Alley Mills, Olivia d’Abo, Jason Hervey, Danica McKellar, Josh Saviano
Original Networks: ABC
The Wonder Years is a family show, and yes, a few of its episodes inch dangerously close to after-school-special territory, but make no mistake: revisiting this late-’80s/early-’90s staple as an adult is just as—if not more—enjoyable than watching it the first time around. It’s unabashedly nostalgic, but it chronicles the ups and downs of Kevin Arnold’s, Winnie Cooper’s and Paul Pfeiffer’s adolescence against the backdrop of the Vietnam era and our nation’s changing social landscape with a maturity most shows geared towards kids lack. The tiny childhood moments that stick with us are treated with the respect they deserve. We laugh when Kevin’s brother Wayne gets him in a headlock and calls him “scrote” for the umpteenth time (try sneaking that by the Nick at Nite censors nowadays!) or when Kev squares off with his mortal enemy Becky Slater, and we cry when Kevin’s occasionally distant father struggles to relate to his teenage kids. And sorry, but if you don’t hold your breath when Kevin puts that letterman jacket over Winnie’s shoulders, you’re dead inside. Music geeks will appreciate the incredible soundtrack as well; the series was only just recently released on DVD because licensing all the songs that appeared on the show (a veritable greatest hits collection from the likes of Dylan, The Beatles and Motown’s finest) had proven nearly impossible. But if you don’t have the cash to throw down for the complete series box set, thankfully, there’s Netflix to keep this classic coming-of-age tale alive as well.—Bonnie Stiernberg

64. Peep Show

Creators: Andrew O’Connor, Jesse Armstrong, Sam Bain
Stars: David Mitchell, Robert Webb, Matt King, Paterson Joseph, Neil Fitzmaurice
Original Network: Channel 4
Although Peep Show has a similar sense of humor to other British sitcoms that came in the wake of The Office, it uses the same sort of awkward comedy for a very different purpose. The show’s title comes from the peek we’re offered into its leads’ brains, as throughout the show we’re offered running monologues of their thoughts in a way that almost no other sitcom has tried. More important than this stylistic quirk, though, is Peep Show’s preference for long arcs, continuity and running gags of the sort Arrested Development and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia would envy. The show has a deep memory and an equally deep sense of morality, so its characters are never let off the hook, even if it takes a few seasons to see how their horrible actions karmically return for their undoing. Peep Show can be difficult to binge-watch, especially early on, but its short seasons make for filler-free writing, and Mitchell and Webb are so good that they lend their characters a strange likability that’s closer to the U.S. Office than the original.—Sean Gandert

63. Family Guy

Creator:   Seth MacFarlane
Stars: Seth MacFarlane, Alex Borstein, Seth Green, Mila Kunis, Mike Henry
Original Network: HBO
It’s the show that made Seth MacFarlane a household name, and unfortunately, the one it seems he’ll never top. This is with good reason. MacFarlane created a family that’s easy to relate to despite the fact that it includes a talking dog (sniff) and an inexplicably British, bloodthirsty infant. Combine the characters’ eccentricities with jokes that (sometimes literally) won’t quit, and you’ve got one of the most important cartoons to grace the small screen.—Austin L. Ray

62. Frasier

Creator: David Angell, Peter Casey, David Lee
Stars: Kelsey Grammer, David Hyde Pierce, Jane Leeves, John Mahoney, Peri Gilpin, Moose
Original Network: NBC
Many classic sitcoms are paeans to blue-collar family life, but Frasier was the odd show that made cultural elites and eggheads somehow seem like lovable characters to a mass audience. Both Frasier and his brother Niles can be infuriatingly snobbish, but audiences soon found that when their petty jealousies were directed at each other, they could also be hilarious. The show soon became an off-hand representation of the idea of “smart comedy” on TV, but it was also still a sitcom full of relationship humor. Viewers waited a hell of a long time in particular for the long-teased relationship between Niles and Daphne to finally come to fruition (seven full seasons). Frazier, on the other hand, is never really lucky in love, but he was always better as a semi-depressed single, turning his probing mind on himself.—Jim Vorel

61. Peaky Blinders

Creator: Steven Knight
Stars: Cillian Murphy, Sam Neill, Helen McCrory, Paul Anderson, Iddo Goldberg
Original Network: BBC Two
Cillian Murphy and Sam Neill star in this rock ’n‘ roll gangster drama—music from Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, PJ Harvey and the White Stripes adds a modern touch to the period proceedings—set in 1919 in the West Midlands industrial city of Birmingham. Murphy is a soldier-turned-ambitious kingpin of the Shelby crime family. Neill is the equally ruthless inspector out to dismantle his organization, who enlists a lovely mole (Annabelle Wallis, also of Fleming) to aid his campaign. (Tom Hardy joins the cast in the second season.) As the steely, azure-eyed Tommy Shelby, Murphy brings his trademark quiet intensity to a multidimensional antihero, one of several thoughtful characterizations in the Shelby clan. As for the gang’s/ show’s namesake, picture razor blades sewn into the brim of its wearers’ caps and you’ll get the head-butting, eye-gouging extent of Peaky Blinders’ viciousness.—Amanda Schurr

60. The Killing

Creator: Veena Sud
Stars: Mireille Enos, Joel Kinnaman
Original Networks: AMC, Netflix
Joel Kinnaman. That’s the reason you need to watch The Killing. In world-weary, recovering addict Detective Stephen Holder, Kinnaman created one of television’s most intriguing, heartbreaking, thought-provoking and hilarious characters. It’s worth it to binge watch The Killing for Kinnaman’s nuanced performance alone. Seriously. The first two seasons focus on Detective Sarah Linden (Mireille Enos) and Holder investigating the murder of teenage Rosie Larsen (Katie Findlay) in rainy, murky Seattle. Michelle Forbes brings a palpable anguish to grieving mother Mitch Larsen. Billy Campbell is riveting as sketchy politician Darren Richmond. The show will keep you guessing with red herring after red herring. Holder and Linden are unlike any other cop pairing on TV. The Killing is a show whose parts (fantastic performances) were always greater than its whole (at times confusing, circuitous story telling). But the parts are terrific. The third season features a brilliant performance by Peter Sarsgaard as death row inmate Ray Seward and keep an eye out Bex Taylor-Klaus as homeless teen Bullet. Her performance was so great that I’m still waiting for her to become the next big breakout star. Joan Allen’s mysterious Colonel Margaret Rayne is at the center of the show’s fourth and final season. By now you’ve probably heard how outraged fans were when the first season finale failed to offer a satisfying conclusion. But behold the beauty of binge watching—you can just view the first two 13-episode seasons as one big 26-episode one. And viola! There’s nothing to be upset about.—Amy Amatangelo

59. Columbo

Creators: Richard Levinson, William Link
Star: Peter Falk
Original Networks: NBC, ABC
“Just one more thing…” With those words, audiences knew that Peter Falk’s Columbo was about to very casually tear into whatever suspect was unfortunate enough to be in the same room as him. In an age where every cop now needs to be a troubled, yet brilliant, antihero, a character like Columbo thrived on his unassuming, affable nature, which inevitably resulted in the show’s villain-of-the-week underestimating him, unknowingly giving themselves away in the process. Indeed, unlike most police shows at the time, Columbo always started by following the perspective of the perpetrator, with the audience then tracking how Columbo would crack the case (referred to by the show’s creative team as a “howcatchem” instead of a “whodunit”). Presented as a series of mini-movies spread out over the course of nearly 35 years, Columbo had its inevitable ups and downs, with some cases being infinitely more interesting than others. What remained largely the same, however, was Falk’s charismatic portrayal of the lovable, titular detective. It’s a performance for the ages, and one that has been frequently imitated but never duplicated.—Mark Rozeman

58. Scandal

Creator:   Shonda Rhimes
Stars: Kerry Washington, Guillermo Díaz, Joe Morton
Original Network: ABC
When so much of a show’s plot is made up of infuriatingly dramatic cliffhangers, it can be deeply satisfying to experience a series, like Scandal, on Netflix. If you haven’t jumped on the bandwagon yet, have no clue what a Gladiator in a suit is, and don’t know whether you’re Team Jake or Team Fitz, there’s no time like the present. Kerry Washington plays Olivia Pope, a lawyer and crisis management expert who represents high-profile politicians and other clientele in Washington D.C. AKA the people running this great nation, who always seem to find themselves in the midst of a scandal. Based on real-life D.C. fixer Judy Smith (the former Bush Administration aide who has represented folks like Monica Lewinsky, Kobe Bryant, and former Senator Larry Craig), Pope is a formidable character, often as much of a scandalous megalomaniac as her clientele. Sure, Rhimes (also the creator of Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice) draws on many-a-cliche for this series—endless love triangles, characters killed off at a moment’s notice, etc. But Scandal is, simultaneously, a refreshing and forward-thinking experience, with a black woman at the head of a very bizarre Scooby gang (brought to us by Weeds actor Guillermo Díaz, along with Darby Stanchfield, Katie Lowes, and Columbus Short), one of the first gay villains on television, and a stark quality that seeks to peel the mask off of American politics. Funny, sexy, downright frightening at times, and complete with an amazing ‘70s soundtrack for every episode, Scandal is the stuff Netflix binge-watching dreams made of.—Shannon M. Houston

57. Love

Creator: Judd Apatow, Lesley Arfin, Paul Rust
Stars: Gillian Jacobs, Paul Rust, Claudia O’Doherty
Original Network: Netflix
If you’re a fan of Undeclared or Freaks and Geeks, you should make it your business to give Judd Apatow’s latest series, Love, a try. In a lot of ways, it feels like what would happen if Sam Weir and Kim Kelly wound up dating in their 30s—we meet Gus (Paul Rust), a dorky on-set tutor for the child star of a witch-themed teen drama, and Mickey (Gillian Jacobs), a radio producer struggling with her sobriety, as they’re both reeling from tough breakups and watch as they fall for each other. Like anything Apatow’s got his name on, there’s an underlying sweetness here and an incredibly strong cast (Claudia O’Doherty steals pretty much every scene she’s in as Mickey’s roommate, Bertie), and the addiction plot lends some dramatic muscle. The characters are complicated (and not always likable), but hey, so is love.—Bonnie Stiernberg

56. The League

Creator: Jeff Schaffer, Jackie Marcus Schaffer
Stars: Mark Duplass, Nick Kroll, Stephen Rannazzisi, Paul Scheer, Jon Lajoie, Katie Aselton
Original Network: FX
Don’t let all the fantasy football talk deter you if you’re not into sports. For all its NFL-star cameos and inside-baseball terminology, The League, at its heart, is really just a show about a group of friends who like to compete with and talk smack about each other. It’s basically Friends, if Ross and Chandler were allowed to call each other “shit-sippers” on primetime network TV. This semi-improvised show is wonderful, weird and features a bunch of people who are very funny but usually relegated to more bit roles in TV and movies (Nick Kroll, Paul Scheer, Katie Aselton, etc.). And when it comes to the show’s smack-talking bros, there’s a favorite for everyone, be it crass, sex-obsessed loose cannon Rafi or Kevin and Jenny, who despite occasionally playing the goofy-dad/smart-mom TV-cleaning-product commercial dichotomy, will remind you of all the things you liked about the good relationships you’ve been in. The shortened first season plays more like a TV miniseries and will take you less than an afternoon. It’ll be worth it.—Lindsay Eanet

55. Parenthood

Creators:   Ron Howard
Jason Katims
Stars: Peter Krause, Lauren Graham, Dax Shepard, Monica Potter, Erika Christensen, Sam Jaeger, Savannah Paige Rae, Sarah Ramos, Max Burkholder, Joy Bryant, Miles Heizer, Mae Whitman, Bonnie Bedelia, Craig T. Nelson, Tyree Brown
Original Network: NBC
Parenthood has always been a good drama, but this season it became a great one. The NBC series is palpably real. The Bravermans are us. Each week, the show provides insight into what it’s like to be part of an extended, loving and meddling family while giving viewers the opportunity for a nice cathartic cry. Family dramas are the hardest type of one-hour programming—they must keep viewers engaged without a weekly patient to cure, crime to solve or case to litigate. That’s why a family drama frequently will turn to the television trope of giving a lead character a disease. But what Parenthood has done with the Kristina (Monica Potter) story arc this season has been profound. The series thrives when it demonstrates the minutia of life. While Kristina has been battling breast cancer, she’s also been dealing with life’s smaller moments. Life, the show subtly points out each week, doesn’t stop for cancer. So often on TV, a disease will befall a character only to be wrapped up in one or two episodes after a few requisite maudlin moments. But Kristina is living with cancer and Potter is giving the performance of her career. She evokes empathy from the viewer while never allowing the viewer to pity Kristina. Parenthood has quietly become one of the best shows on TV.—Amy Amatangelo

54. A Different World

Creator:   Bill Cosby
Stars: Lisa Bonet, Jasmine Guy, Marisa Tomei, Dawnn Lewis, Loretta Devine, Kadeem Hardison, Mary Alice, Darryl M. Bell, Sinbad, Jada Pinkett
Original Network: NBC
This Cosby Show spin-off had a rocky start, but after writing out Denise Huxtable and hiring Debbie Allen to oversee it before the second season, it turned into one of the most distinct sitcoms in TV history. Instead of focusing on one member of a beloved TV family in a new setting, it refocused on the setting itself, a historically black college called Hillman that was a fictional stand-in for Howard University. Jasmine Guy and Kadeem Hardison might’ve lead the ensemble as Whitley Gilbert and Dwayne Wayne, but it was a true ensemble, with a cast that reflected the diversity of black life in the late ’80s and early ’90s. It also often dealt with social issues that The Cosby Show and other sitcoms at the time shied away from, and usually without the schmaltz you’d expect from “very special” sitcom episodes.—Garrett Martin

53. The Guild

Creator: Felicia Day
Stars: Felicia Day, Vincent Caso, Sandeep Parikh, Amy Okuda, Robin Thorsen, Jeff Lewis
Original Network: YouTube, Xbox Live
It’s no secret that we have a bit of a crush on Felicia Day. From her starring role in Joss Whedon’s straight-to-internet supervillain musical spectacular, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-a-long Blog, to her more than two million followers on Twitter, she’s an Internet force to be reckoned with. She’s also a writer/co-producer/actress/etc. for a well-known and industry-defying web series called The Guild. Turns out, we might also have a crush on The Guild itself. The web series follows the sordid on- and off-line lives of a band of gaming misfits as they go from being anonymous avatars to being present in each others’ lives. The ensemble that Day and other producers scrabbled together are not only incredibly funny in their own individual rights, but they work together well—from snarky Amy Okuda as Guild dissenter Tinkerballa down to Sandeep Parikh’s obsessive, sheltered and socially-deficient gnome warlock Zaboo. Every character seems almost tailored to each actor/comedian’s strengths, which maximizes the potential for hilarity.—Whitney Baker

52. Luther

Creator: Neil Cross
Stars: Idris Elba, Warren Brown, Paul McGann
Original Network: BBC One
Idris Elba as a sad, violent, and genius detective, tracking down the weird serial killers of London? It’s a formula that should work, and does. It was recently announced that the show is done after three series of three episodes each (though apparently there will be a feature film), and that length seems perfect. Also, Alice Morgan is one of the coolest criminals in any detective show.—Shane Ryan

51. Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp

Creator: Michael Showalter, David Wain
Stars: Elizabeth Banks, Lake Bell, H. Jon Benjamin, Michael Ian Black, Michael Cera, Josh Charles, Bradley Cooper, Judah Friedlander, Janeane Garofalo, Jon Hamm, Nina Hellman
Original Network: Netflix
When a follow-up comes along for any project with a huge cult audience, it seems doomed to disappoint. Arrested Development’s fourth season’s breaking apart of the cast was bound to frustrate, and Anchorman 2 could never reach the surprising joy of the original. Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp obviously came with a certain amount of trepidation. But instead of trying to recreate the glory of the last day of camp, as seen in the 2001 film, First Day of Camp added a considerable amount of depth to the original film and explained aspects of Camp Firewood that never needed to be understood, but make the entire history of these characters feel more whole. The Netflix series managed to redefine these characters that we fell in love with over a decade ago, all while giving us laughs and immense heart as well.—Ross Bonaime