TV The Best TV Actors of All Time  

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List Rules Any actor who has ever been a part of a TV show and not simply a guest star.

The greatest TV actors of all time. Some of these actors have been in movies, some of them are even more well known at this point for their work in films rather than on TV but all of these actors have really shown off some impressive chops on the small screen.

From Bryan Cranston to Hugh Laurie and beyond, these are the best TV actors ever. From Emmy winners to simply fan favorites. Don't see your favorite actor from a TV show on this list? Add them! And make sure to vote for all of your favorites. Vote up who you think deserves the top spot, and vote down anyone that you think is overrated.
list ordered by

1
898 802
Bryan Cranston is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Bryan Cranston Breaking Bad, Malcolm in the Middle

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2
365 418
Kevin Spacey is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Kevin Spacey House of Cards

3
496 568
Hugh Laurie is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Hugh Laurie House, Blackadder, A Bit of Fry & Laurie

4
492 491
James Gandolfini is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
James Gandolfini The Sopranos

5
461 496
Robin Williams is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Robin Williams Mork & Mindy, The Crazy Ones, Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In

6
383 380
Lucille Ball is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Lucille Ball I Love Lucy

7
398 507
Steve Buscemi is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Steve Buscemi Boardwalk Empire

8
390 464
Michael J. Fox is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Michael J. Fox Family Ties, Spin City, The Michael J. Fox Show

9
429 461
Peter Dinklage is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Peter Dinklage Game of Thrones

10
352 333
Neil Patrick Harris is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Neil Patrick Harris How I Met Your Mother, Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, Doogie Howser

11
304 287
Patrick Stewart is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Patrick Stewart Star Trek: The Next Generation

12
227 237
Tom Selleck is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Tom Selleck Blue Bloods, Magnum, P.I.

13
323 321
Steve Carell is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Steve Carell The Office

14
311 277
Betty White is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Betty White The Golden Girls, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Hot in Cleveland

15
275 220
Andy Griffith is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Andy Griffith The Andy Griffith Show, Matlock

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16
213 260
Matthew McConaughey is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Matthew McConaughey True Detective

17
267 354
Robin Wright is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Robin Wright House of Cards, Santa Barbara, A TV Dante

18
241 214
Benedict Cumberbatch is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Benedict Cumberbatch Sherlock, Parade's End, The Last Enemy

19
217 219
Julia Louis-Dreyfus is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Julia Louis-Dreyfus Seinfeld, Veep, The New Adventures of Old Christine

20
223 205
Leonard Nimoy is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Leonard Nimoy Star Trek: The Original Series

21
168 201
Gary Sinise is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Gary Sinise CSI: NY

22
183 169
Kelsey Grammer is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Kelsey Grammer Cheers, Frasier, Medium

23
247 238
Ed O'Neill is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Ed O'Neill Modern Family, Married... with Children

24
320 368
Sally Field is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
stefan-komisch added Sally Field Brothers & Sisters, From the Earth to the Moon, Gidget

25
173 104
Mary Tyler Moore is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Mary Tyler Moore The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Dick Van Dyke Show, Hot in Cleveland

26
271 278
Michael C. Hall is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Michael C. Hall Dexter, Six Feet Under

27
421 284
Hugh Dancy is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
RazzleDazzle(Crimsonny) added Hugh Dancy Hannibal, The Big C, The New Adventures of Robin Hood

28
151 171
Tina Fey is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Tina Fey 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

29
232 277
Jennifer Aniston is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time

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30
358 402
Peter Falk is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Peter Falk Columbo

31
237 236
Jerry Seinfeld is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Jerry Seinfeld Seinfeld, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee

32
224 174
William Shatner is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
William Shatner Star Trek: The Original Series, Boston Legal, Bleep My Dad Says

33
323 348
Henry Winkler is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Henry Winkler Happy Days, Arrested Development

34
209 222
Danny DeVito is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Danny DeVito It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Taxi

35
139 104
Jackie Gleason is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Jackie Gleason The Honeymooners

36
221 188
Dick Van Dyke is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Dick Van Dyke The Dick Van Dyke Show

37
203 223
John Goodman is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
John Goodman Roseanne, Treme

38
112 97
Larry Hagman is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Larry Hagman Dallas, I Dream of Jeannie

39
112 115
Katey Sagal is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Katey Sagal Futurama, Sons of Anarchy, Married... with Children

40
106 41
Alan Alda is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Alan Alda M*A*S*H, The West Wing, The Big C

41
184 156
Mark Harmon is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Mark Harmon NCIS, St. Elsewhere, Boston Public

42
152 170
Kiefer Sutherland is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time

43
191 223
James Spader is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
James Spader Boston Legal, The Practice, The Blacklist

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44
124 184
Amy Poehler is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Amy Poehler Parks and Recreation, Saturday Night Live, Broad City

45
111 143
Nathan Fillion is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Nathan Fillion Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly, Castle

46
215 299
Patrick Dempsey is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Patrick Dempsey Grey's Anatomy, Fast Times

47
176 207
Will Smith is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Will Smith The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

48
145 193
Andrew Lincoln is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Andrew Lincoln The Walking Dead, Strike Back, Afterlife

49
150 158
Martin Sheen is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Martin Sheen The West Wing

50
170 160
Tony Shalhoub is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best TV Actors of All Time
Tony Shalhoub Monk, Wings