The Best Cult TV Shows of All Time

131k votes 9.2k voters 241k views 340 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Includes TV shows that have a significant fan presence that can be seen on forums, websites, clubs or fan-fiction

List of the best cult TV shows ever, ranked by their loyal fans. TV series that develop cult followings are known for their magnetic characters, pithy dialogue, and complex plots that interweave of the course of several episodes or seasons. The best cult TV fan bases are passionate and may feel deeply attached to the cult characters, their lives, and their relationships. Many devoted fan communities take to online message boards, writing fan-fiction, and attending conventions dressed as their favorite characters.

Long-running mainstream series such as The Twilight ZoneLost, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer easily attracted loyal fanbases, but even more impressive are those beloved shows that only lasted a season or two, like Freaks and Geeks and Firefly. Even after their favorite shows go off the air, fans of cult TV shows continue to collect memorabilia, replica props, and do cosplay at fan events. This subcultural phenomenon spans genres from sci-fi cult shows to fantasy, drama, and even comedy cult series. This list also includes cult classic TV shows and top cult TV series. 

What are the best cult TV series? To vote on more of the best TV series, check out these lists of the best sci-fi shows of all time and the best shows cancelled too soon.

Collection Photo:  via hbo
  • 99 ReRanks
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  1. 1
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    - 1,320


    Johnny Galecki, Jim Parsons, Kaley Cuoco

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  2. 2
    + 1,765
    - 1,157

    most listed
    David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, Mitch Pileggi

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  3. 3
    + 1,907
    - 1,005


    Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman, Matt Smith

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  4. 4
    + 1,301
    - 927

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley

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  5. 5
    + 1,168
    - 858

    often listed
    Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam

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  6. 6
    + 1,394
    - 735

    ranked low on reranks
    Rod Serling, Robert McCord, Jay Overholts

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  7. 7
    + 1,068
    - 775

    often listed
    Patrick Stewart, Brent Spiner, Jonathan Frakes

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  8. 8
    + 2,021
    - 1,094

    ranked low on reranks
    Nathan Fillion, Gina Torres, Alan Tudyk

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  9. 9
    + 1,790
    - 939


    Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington

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  10. 10
    + 1,332
    - 666

    added by Mabie1
    Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Una Stubbs

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  11. 11
    + 1,260
    - 838


    Kyle MacLachlan, Michael Ontkean, Mädchen Amick

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  12. 12
    + 821
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Joel Hodgson, Michael J. Nelson, Trace Beaulieu

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  13. 13
    + 1,559
    - 955


    Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, Jim Beave

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  14. 14
    + 1,261
    - 799


    Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, Portia de Rossi

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  15. 15
    + 1,357
    - 818

    added by davec007
    Bryan Cranston, Aaron Paul, Anna Gunn

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  16. 16
    + 1,202
    - 706


    Dan Castellaneta, Nancy Cartwright, Julie Kavner

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  17. 17
    + 1,098
    - 761


    Joel McHale, Danny Pudi, Donald Glover

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  18. 18
    + 894
    - 776

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Edward James Olmos, Mary McDonnell, Jamie Bamber

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  19. 19
    + 1,144
    - 718


    Linda Cardellini, John Francis Daley, James Franco

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  20. 20
    + 1,149
    - 1,032

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Naveen Andrews, Matthew Fox, Jorge Garcia

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  21. 21
    + 924
    - 604

    added by MichaelGuerrieri
    Trey Parker, Matt Stone, Isaac Hayes

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  22. 22
    + 1,236
    - 811

    added by MichaelGuerrieri
    Andrew Lincoln, Jon Bernthal, Sarah Wayne Callies

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  23. 23
    + 949
    - 733

    added by davec007
    Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, David Zayas

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  24. 24
    + 764
    - 595


    Scott Bakula, Dean Stockwell, Deborah Pratt

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  25. 25
    + 881
    - 743


    David Boreanaz, Charisma Carpenter, Alexis Denisof

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  26. 26
    + 760
    - 437

    ranked low on reranks & added by GennisMaringHalmi
    Billy West, John DiMaggio, Katey Sagal

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  27. 27
    + 544
    - 628

    the people's #1 & often listed
    Ben Browder, Claudia Black, Anthony Simcoe

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  28. 28
    + 756
    - 658

    added by davec007
    Jerry Seinfeld, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Michael Richards

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  29. 29
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    - 689


    Kristen Bell, Percy Daggs III, Jason Dohring

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  30. 30
    + 432
    - 582

    often listed
    Dave Foley, Bruce McCulloch, Kevin McDonald

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  31. 31
    + 642
    - 523

    added by Rose1
    Holly Marie Combs, Alyssa Milano, Brian Krause

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  32. 32
    + 627
    - 546


    Richard Dean Anderson, Michael Shanks, Amanda Tapping

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  33. 33
    + 670
    - 633


    Lucy Lawless, Renée O'Connor, Ted Raimi

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  34. 34
    + 772
    - 563

    ranked low on reranks
    Anna Torv, Joshua Jackson, Jasika Nicole

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  35. 35
    + 327
    - 316

    added by emlyt
    Lee Pace, Anna Friel, Chi McBride

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  36. 36
    + 411
    - 465

    added by MichaelGuerrieri
    Dave Chappelle, Donnell Rawlings, Neal Brennan

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  37. 37
    + 736
    - 700


    Seth MacFarlane, Alex Borstein, Seth Green

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  38. 38
    + 434
    - 651

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Jerry Doyle, Mira Furlan, Richard Biggs

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  39. 39
    + 560
    - 489

    ranked low on reranks
    Charlie Day, Glenn Howerton, Rob McElhenney

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  40. 40
    + 341
    - 523

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Jennifer Saunders, Joanna Lumley, Julia Sawalha

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  41. 41
    + 317
    - 197

    ranked low on reranks
    Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow

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  42. 42
    + 417
    - 580

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    David Giuntoli, Silas Weir Mitchell, Sasha Roiz

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  43. 43
    + 210
    - 186

    added by Abbydabby
    Ted Danson, Rhea Perlman, John Ratzenberger

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  44. 44
    + 313
    - 188

    ranked low on reranks & added by BorkZorkOrc
    Rob Paulsen, Maurice LaMarche, Mark Hamill

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  45. 45
    + 227
    - 162

    added by AlexDeLarge
    John Cleese, Prunella Scales, Andrew Sachs

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  46. 46
    + 463
    - 462


    Adam West, Burt Ward, Alan Napier

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  47. 47
    + 187
    - 159

    added by mario.festante
    Rowan Atkinson, Brian Blessed, Elspet Gray

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  48. 48
    + 510
    - 369

    ranked low on reranks & added by SamanthaJones
    Lady Gaga, Kathy Bates, Angela Bassett

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  49. 49
    + 432
    - 391

    added by Jackson Bolt
    Alfred Hitchcock, Harry Tyler, John Williams

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  50. 50
    + 351
    - 505


    Patrick Macnee, Diana Rigg, Honor Blackman

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