law enforcement The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows  

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List Rules Vote up your favorite police procedurals, current and long gone

The very best police procedural shows on television, ranked from best to worst. What is it about a group of detectives that can carry a series for years and years? Some of the longest running drama shows have been police procedurals, including the original "Law & Order," which ran for 22 seasons, and "Dragnet," which aired 450 episodes. This list of the greatest police procedural shows also includes pictures from the shows when available. Popular police procedural TV shows have been a staple of television for years, so there's often debate about which is the most entertaining in the genre. While older whodunit shows like "Murder, She Wrote" have a bit of whimsical comedy in each episode, grittier versions like "SVU" are darker with gritty grimes. What is your favorite police procedural show? Don't let your favorite cop dramas and detective series get to the bottom of the list. Be sure to vote them up so they have the chance to reach the top spot. The list of police procedural television shows below includes information like the program's cast, creator, and premiere date when available. With shows ranging from "Criminal Minds" to "Dexter," this is a great starting point for a list of your favorites.

What do you think are the best police procedurals? What are your favorite current cop shows?
list ordered by

1
+ - 405 159
Sherlock is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Sherlock Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Una Stubbs

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2
+ - 295 156
The Wire is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
The Wire Dominic West, Lance Reddick, Sonja Sohn

3
+ - 249 128
Law & Order is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Law & Order Jerry Orbach, Jesse L. Martin, Dennis Farina

4
+ - 487 204
Criminal Minds is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Criminal Minds Shemar Moore, Matthew Gray Gubler, Thomas Gibson

5
+ - 374 181
The Mentalist is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
The Mentalist Simon Baker, Robin Tunney, Tim Kang

6
+ - 348 174
NCIS is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
NCIS Mark Harmon, Michael Weatherly, Pauley Perrette

7
+ - 197 78
Castle is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Castle Nathan Fillion, Stana Katic, Susan Sullivan

8
+ - 306 121
Law & Order: Special Victims U... is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Mariska Hargitay, Christopher Meloni, Ice-T

9
+ - 178 98
The X-Files is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
The X-Files David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, Mitch Pileggi

10
+ - 178 99
Rizzoli & Isles is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Rizzoli & Isles Angie Harmon, Jordan Bridges, Bruce McGill

11
+ - 100 47
Blue Bloods is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Blue Bloods

12
+ - 136 94
NYPD Blue is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
NYPD Blue Dennis Franz, Gordon Clapp, James McDaniel

13
+ - 232 125
Dexter is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Dexter Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, David Zayas

14
+ - 105 86
Hill Street Blues is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Hill Street Blues Daniel J. Travanti, Michael Warren, Bruce Weitz

15
+ - 184 77
The Blacklist is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
The Blacklist James Spader, Megan Boone, Diego Klattenhoff

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16
+ - 143 86
Columbo is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Columbo Peter Falk, Mike Lally, John Finnegan

17
+ - 167 90
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Laurence Fishburne, Marg Helgenberger, George Eads

18
+ - 180 80
Monk is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Monk Tony Shalhoub, Jason Gray-Stanford, Ted Levine

19
+ - 302 120
bones is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
bones Emily Deschanel, David Boreanaz, Michaela Conlin

20
+ - 232 116
Psych is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Psych James Roday, Dulé Hill, Timothy Omundson

21
+ - 139 115
CSI: NY is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
CSI: NY Gary Sinise, Carmine Giovinazzo, Hill Harper

22
+ - 76 70
The Rockford Files is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
The Rockford Files James Garner, Noah Beery Jr., Joe Santos

23
+ - 198 111
Lie to Me is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Lie to Me Tim Roth, Kelli Williams, Brendan Hines

24
+ - 124 76
Law & Order: Criminal Intent is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Law & Order: Criminal Intent Kathryn Erbe, Vincent D'Onofrio, Jamey Sheridan

25
+ - 144 95
Numbers is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Numbers Rob Morrow, David Krumholtz, Judd Hirsch

26
+ - 156 88
NCIS: Los Angeles is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
NCIS: Los Angeles Chris O'Donnell, Daniela Ruah, Barrett Foa

27
+ - 119 62
The Shield is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
The Shield Michael Chiklis, Catherine Dent, Walton Goggins

28
+ - 133 51
Elementary is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Elementary Jonny Lee Miller, Lucy Liu, Aidan Quinn

29
+ - 134 77
Cold Case is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Cold Case Kathryn Morris, Danny Pino, John Finn

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30
+ - 146 94
The Closer is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
The Closer Kyra Sedgwick, J.K. Simmons, Corey Reynolds

31
+ - 108 69
Southland is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Southland Michael Cudlitz, Shawn Hatosy, Regina King

32
+ - 92 91
Life on Mars is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Life on Mars John Simm, Philip Glenister, Liz White

33
+ - 101 85
Without a Trace is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Without a Trace Anthony LaPaglia, Poppy Montgomery, Marianne Jean-Baptiste

34
+ - 79 49
NCIS: New Orleans is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
NCIS: New Orleans Scott Bakula, Lucas Black, Zoe McLellan

35
+ - 90 62
Magnum, P.I. is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Magnum, P.I. Tom Selleck, John Hillerman, Roger E. Mosley

36
+ - 127 71
Hawaii Five-O is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Hawaii Five-O Jack Lord, James MacArthur, Kam Fong

37
+ - 89 63
Rookie Blue is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Rookie Blue Missy Peregrym, Gregory Smith, Enuka Okuma

38
+ - 70 50
Prime Suspect is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Prime Suspect Helen Mirren, Zoë Wanamaker, Tom Bell

39
+ - 71 69
Eureka is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Eureka Colin Ferguson, Salli Richardson-Whitfield, Erica Cerra

40
+ - 95 99
CSI: Miami is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
CSI: Miami David Caruso, Emily Procter, Adam Rodriguez

41
+ - 67 53
Dragnet is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Dragnet Jack Webb, Harry Morgan, Don Ross

42
+ - 47 34
21 Jump Street is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
21 Jump Street Johnny Depp, Dustin Nguyen, Peter Deluise

43
+ - 57 47
The Killing is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
The Killing Mireille Enos, Joel Kinnaman, Billy Campbell

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44
+ - 63 58
In Plain Sight is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
In Plain Sight Mary McCormack, Frederick Weller, Paul Ben-Victor

45
+ - 60 57
Kojak is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Kojak Telly Savalas, Dan Frazer, Kevin Dobson

46
+ - 51 62
Walker, Texas Ranger is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Walker, Texas Ranger Chuck Norris, Clarence Gilyard Jr., Sheree J. Wilson

47
+ - 72 49
Homicide: Life on the Street is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Homicide: Life on the Street Richard Belzer, Clark Johnson, Yaphet Kotto

48
+ - 55 53
Miami Vice is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Miami Vice Don Johnson, Philip Michael Thomas, Saundra Santiago

49
+ - 51 49
Starsky and Hutch is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Starsky and Hutch David Soul, Paul Michael Glaser, Antonio Fargas

50
+ - 57 58
Cagney & Lacey is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Ever Police Procedural Shows
Cagney & Lacey Tyne Daly, Al Waxman, John Karlen