2018 The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
142.3k votes 11k voters 218.4k views 71 items
We hope you love the products we recommend! Just so you know, Ranker may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

While some of the best drama TV shows are long gone (we'll never forget you, Breaking Bad), others like Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, and even American Horror Story keep us interested, toy with our emotions, and certainly keep our DVRs busy as we follow along with the dramatic story lines.

Many of the best, most acclaimed series come from networks like CBS, ABC, NBC, and FOX while others were only available from basic cable stations like AMC and FX. Even others were limited to those with the pay channels like HBO and Showtime or streaming providers like Netflix and Hulu - which make it easy to decide which shows to marathon. Regardless of network, these series get us interested and keep us hooked to all the action throughout the year.

The best drama shows of all time provided a bit of something for everyone. Sci-fi and horror lovers had plenty of options like The Strain and American Horror Story while those looking for courtroom dramas could choose from the likes of How to Get Away with Murder and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.

Old favorites like Criminal Minds and NCIS continue to hold strong on network TV, but the best dramatic television shows also include Netflix series such as House of Cards and Daredevil, along with cable favorites including Homeland and True Detective.

So whether you're a fan of the warm and fuzzy dramas or the hard-hitting crime shows or any in between, one or another of the best dramatic series on TV in 2019 is sure to keep you crying, cheering, or simply entertained.

Check out more lists like the most loved tv shows of all time, the top premium cable series, and the best sci-fi shows

list ordered by

1
3,666 1,907
Game of Thrones is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke Game of Thrones (HBO, 2011) is an American fantasy drama television series created by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, based on the series of fantasy novels by George R. R. Martin. Nine noble ...more

2
2,556 2,296
The Walking Dead is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Andrew Lincoln, Jon Bernthal, Sarah Wayne Callies The Walking Dead (A&E, 2010) is an American post-apocalyptic horror television series developed by Frank Darabont, based on the comic book series by Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, and Charlie ...more

3
1,871 1,683
Sherlock is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
IsabelBaker added Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Una Stubbs Sherlock is a British television crime drama that presents a contemporary adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes detective stories. Created by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, it ...more

4
1,657 1,557
Supernatural is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, Katie Cassidy Supernatural (The CW, 2005) is an American fantasy horror television series created by Eric Kripke. Two brothers, Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles), follow their father's ...more

5
1,742 2,174
NCIS is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Mark Harmon, Michael Weatherly, Pauley Perrette NCIS is an American police procedural drama television series, revolving around a fictional team of special agents from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, which conducts investigations ...more

6
1,358 1,500
Orange Is the New Black is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
LeneMadsen added Taylor Schilling, Danielle Brooks, Taryn Manning Orange Is the New Black is an American comedy-drama series created by Jenji Kohan and first released on Netflix on July 11, 2013. The series, produced by Tilted Productions in association with ...more

7
1,348 1,900
Homeland is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Claire Danes, Mandy Patinkin, Rupert Friend Homeland is an American political thriller television series developed by Howard Gordon and Alex Gansa based on the Israeli series Hatufim, which was created by Gideon Raff. The series stars ...more

8
1,165 1,714
Law & Order: Special Victims U... is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Mariska Hargitay, Christopher Meloni, Ice-T Law & Order: Special Victims Unit is an American police procedural, legal, crime drama television series set in New York City, where it is also primarily produced. In the style of the ...more

9
970 880
The Blacklist is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
LanaYoshii added James Spader, Megan Boone, Diego Klattenhoff The Blacklist is an American crime drama television series that premiered on NBC on September 23, 2013. Raymond "Red" Reddington, a former U.S Navy officer turned high-profile ...more

10
967 870
Vikings is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
draga added Travis Fimmel, Katheryn Winnick, Clive Standen Vikings (History, 2013) is a historical drama television series created by Michael Hirst. A farmer (Travis Fimmel) rises to fame by successful raids into England, and eventually becomes a ...more

11
1,309 1,300
Criminal Minds is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
bojanthebest added Shemar Moore, Matthew Gray Gubler, Thomas Gibson Criminal Minds is an American police-procedural television program that premiered September 22, 2005, on CBS. The series follows a team of profilers from the FBI's Behavioral Analysis Unit based ...more

12
1,176 1,714
Once Upon a Time is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Ginnifer Goodwin, Jennifer Morrison, Lana Parrilla Once Upon a Time is an American fairy tale drama series that premiered on October 23, 2011, on ABC. The show takes place in the fictional seaside town of Storybrooke, Maine, whose residents are ...more

13
1,324 1,567
American Horror Story is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Connie Britton, Dylan McDermott, Evan Peters American Horror Story (FX, 2011) is an American anthology horror television series created by Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk. An anthology series centering on different characters and locations, ...more

14
625 842
Outlander is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
RondaBandy added Caitriona Balfe, Sam Heughan, Tobias Menzies Outlander is a British-American television drama series based on the historical time travel Outlander series of novels by Diana Gabaldon. Created by Ronald D. Moore and produced by Left Bank ...more

15
990 1,240
Suits is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Gabriel Macht, Patrick J. Adams, Meghan Markle Suits is a USA Network legal drama created by Aaron Korsh that stars Patrick J. Adams as Michael "Mike" Ross and Gabriel Macht as Harvey Specter. The first episode debuted on June 23, ...more

16
514 542
Mr. Robot is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Raim Malek, Portia Doubleday, Christian Slater Mr. Robot (USA Network, 2015) is an American drama–thriller television series created by Sam Esmail. Elliot (Rami Malek), a cybersecurity engineer and hacker who suffers from social anxiety ...more

17
986 1,115
Arrow is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
nicolas.verret added Stephen Amell, Katie Cassidy, Colin Donnell Arrow is an American superhero television series developed by Greg Berlanti, Marc Guggenheim, and Andrew Kreisberg, based on the DC Comics character. Five years after being stranded on a hostile ...more

18
761 818
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Clark Gregg, Ming-Na Wen, Brett Dalton Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., or simply Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., is an American television series created for ABC by Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon, and Maurissa Tancharoen, based on the Marvel ...more

19
537 492
The 100 is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Eliza Taylor, Paige Turco, Thomas McDonell The 100 (The CW, 2014) is an American post-apocalyptic science fiction drama television series developed by Jason Rothenberg, loosely based on the book by Kass Morgan. 97 years after a nuclear ...more

20
847 1,051
Elementary is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Jonny Lee Miller, Lucy Liu, Jon Michael Hill Elementary (CBS, 2012) is an American procedural drama series created by Robert Doherty, based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's character Sherlock Holmes. Following his fall from grace in London and ...more

21
850 1,175
Doctor Who is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Christopher Eccleston, David Tennant, Matt Smith Doctor Who (BBC, 2005) is a British science-fiction television show created by Sydney Newman, C. E. Webber, and Donald Wilson. The further adventures in time and space of the alien adventurer ...more

22
566 655
Gotham is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Ben McKenzie, Donal Logue, David Mazouz Gotham (Fox, 2014) is an American drama television series developed by Bruno Heller, based on the DC Comics characters from the Batman franchise. The story behind Detective James Gordon's (Ben ...more

23
586 623
The Flash is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Danielle Panabaker The Flash (The CW, 2014) is an American superhero television series developed by Greg Berlanti, Andrew Kreisberg, and Geoff Johns, based on the DC Comics character. CSI Barry Allen (Grant ...more

24
440 492
Better Call Saul is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
LanaYoshii added Bob Odenkirk, Jonathan Banks, Rhea Seehorn Better Call Saul (A&E, 2015) is an American television drama series created by Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould, and a spinoff prequel of Breaking Bad. The trials and tribulations of lawyer, ...more

25
652 733
True Detective is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
LanaYoshii added Matthew McConaughey, Woody Harrelson, Michelle Monaghan True Detective (HBO, 2014) is an American anthology drama television series created by Nic Pizzolatto. Each season focuses on detectives investigating violent offences.