The Best of 2018 The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
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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 2018 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
3,566 1,856
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
2,525 2,213
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
1,832 1,615
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
1,586 1,515
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
1,723 2,103
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
1,340 1,433
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
1,145 1,670
Law & Order: Special Victims U... is listed (or ranked) 7 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

8
1,336 1,863
Homeland is listed (or ranked) 8 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

9
1,288 1,261
Criminal Minds is listed (or ranked) 9 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

10
947 848
The Blacklist is listed (or ranked) 10 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

11
922 850
Vikings is listed (or ranked) 11 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

12
1,304 1,536
American Horror Story is listed (or ranked) 12 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

13
1,166 1,675
Once Upon a Time is listed (or ranked) 13 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

14
603 825
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
974 1,217
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
748 793
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is listed (or ranked) 16 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

17
495 521
Mr. Robot is listed (or ranked) 17 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

18
969 1,086
Arrow is listed (or ranked) 18 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

19
834 1,030
Elementary is listed (or ranked) 19 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

20
834 1,153
Doctor Who is listed (or ranked) 20 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

21
513 473
The 100 is listed (or ranked) 21 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

22
566 600
The Flash is listed (or ranked) 22 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

23
625 721
True Detective is listed (or ranked) 23 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.

24
544 639
Gotham is listed (or ranked) 24 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

25
414 476
Better Call Saul is listed (or ranked) 25 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

26
830 1,417
NCIS: Los Angeles is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
cfletcher4956 added Chris O'Donnell, Daniela Ruah, Barrett Foa NCIS: Los Angeles is an American television series combining elements of the military drama and police procedural genres, which premiered on the CBS network on September 22, 2009. NCIS: Los ...more

27
762 1,309
Hawaii Five-0 is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Leonard Freeman, Alex Kurtzman, Peter M. Lenkov Hawaii Five-0 is an American police procedural drama television series and a remake of the original 1968–80 television series. The series is produced by K/O Paper Products and 101st Street ...more

28
244 169
Stranger Things is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Finn Wolfhard Stranger Things (Netflix, 2016) is an American science fiction-horror web television series created by The Duffer Brothers. When a young boy (Noah Schnapp) disappears, his mother (Winona Ryder), ...more

29
336 244
The Good Doctor is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Freddie Highmore, Antonia Thomas, Nicholas Gonzalez The Good Doctor (ABC, 2017) is an American medical-drama television series based on the 2013 South Korean series of the same name. Shaun Murphy (Freddie Highmore) is a young pediatric surgeon ...more

30
614 1,118
Blue Bloods is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Donnie Wahlberg, Bridget Moynahan, Will Estes Blue Bloods is an American police procedural drama series shown on CBS in the United States and Canada and on Sky Atlantic in the United Kingdom. The series is filmed on location in New York ...more

31
399 518
Fear the Walking Dead is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Kim Dickens, Cliff Curtis, Elizabeth Rodriguez This show is an American post-apocalyptic horror drama television series created by Robert Kirkman and Dave Erickson. A dysfunctional, blended family must reinvent themselves by learning new ...more

32
372 454
Jessica Jones is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
jeff-cosenza added Krysten Ritter, Mike Colter, Rachael Taylor Jessica Jones (Netflix, 2015) is an American web television series created by Melissa Rosenberg, based on the Marvel Comics character. Following the tragic end of her brief superhero career, ...more

33
482 637
How to Get Away with Murder is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Viola Davis, Billy Brown, Alfred Enoch This television show is an American drama television series created by Peter Nowalk. A law professor (Viola Davis) at a prestigious Philadelphia university and five of her students become ...more

34
523 933
Chicago Fire is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
JenniferM.Collins added Jesse Spencer, Taylor Kinney, Monica Raymund Chicago Fire is an American television drama series that airs on NBC and was created by Michael Brandt and Derek Haas with Dick Wolf serving as an executive producer. The series originally ...more

35
394 863
Ray Donovan is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
LeneMadsen added Liev Schreiber, Paula Malcomson, Eddie Marsan Ray Donovan is an American television drama series created by Ann Biderman for Showtime. The twelve-episode first season premiered on June 30, 2013. The pilot episode broke records of ...more

36
215 219
SEAL Team is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
David Boreanaz, Max Thieriot, Jessica Paré SEAL Team (CBS, 2017) is an American drama series created by Ben Cavell. The drama follows the lives of elite Navy SEALs Jason Hayes (David Boreanaz) and Clay Spenser (Max Thieriot) as they ...more

37
175 100
Mindhunter is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Jonathan Groff, Holt McCallany, Anna Torv Mindhunter (Netflix, 2017) is an American drama series based on the book written by Mark Olshaker and John E. Douglas. Set in 1979, the series revolves around two FBI agents (Jonathan Groff and ...more

38
75 77
Ozark is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Jason Bateman, Laura Linney, Sofia Hublitz Ozark (Netflix, 2017) is an American crimeozark drama series created by Bill Dubuque. Financial planner Marty Byrde (Jason Bateman) must suddenly relocate his family (Laura Linney) from Chicago ...more

39
182 121
The Punisher is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Jon Bernthal, Ben Barnes, Ebon Moss-Bachrach Marvel's The Punisher (Netflix, 2017) is an American web television series created for Netflix by Steve Lightfoot. Former Force Recon officer Frank Castle (Jon Bernthal), known throughout New ...more

40
153 242
This Is Us is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
carlybobarly added Milo Ventimiglia, Mandy Moore, Sterling K. Brown This Is Us (NBC, 2016) is an American television series created by Dan Fogelman. Follows a unique ensemble, as their paths cross and their life stories interwine, from sharing the same birthday, ...more

41
239 427
Supergirl is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Rakibul Hoque added Melissa Benoist, Mehcad Brooks, Chyler Leigh Supergirl (The CW, 2015) is an American superhero action-adventure television series developed by Ali Adler, Greg Berlanti, and Andrew Kreisberg, based on the DC Comics character. The adventures ...more

42
87 103
Black Mirror is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Luke Albright added Daniel Kaluuya, Toby Kebbell, Rory Kinnear Black Mirror is a British television anthology series created by Charlie Brooker that features speculative fiction with dark and sometimes satirical themes that examine modern society, ...more

43
156 335
iZombie is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Alex Farias added Rose McIver iZombie (The CW, 2015) is an American television series developed by Rob Thomas and Diane Ruggiero-Wright, loosely based on the comic books by Chris Roberson and Michael Allred. A medical ...more

44
325 606
Chicago P.D. is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Jason Beghe, Jon Seda, Sophia Bush Chicago P.D. (NBC, 2014) is an American police procedural drama television series created by Dick Wolf and Matt Olmstead. The show follows the Chicago Police Department uniformed cops who patrol ...more

45
68 69
Peaky Blinders is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Cillian Murphy, Helen McCrory, Paul Anderson Peaky Blinders (BBC Two, 2013) is a British television action drama created by Steven Knight, based upon the exploits of the historical gang. In 1919 Birmingham, England, leader Tommy Shelby ...more

46
46 37
The Handmaid's Tale is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Elisabeth Moss, Joseph Fiennes, Yvonne Strahovski The Handmaid's Tale (Hulu, 2017) is an American web television series created by Bruce Miller, based on the 1985 novel by Margaret Atwood. In a dystopian future where women are brutally ...more

47
30 58
13 Reasons Why is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Dylan Minnette, Katherine Langford, Kate Walsh 13 Reasons Why (Netflix, 2017) is an American television series based on the 2007 novel Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher and adapted by Brian Yorkey. Told through a series of flashbacks, the ...more

48
117 281
The Man in the High Castle is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Clark Benson added Alexa Davalos, Rupert Evans, Luke Kleintank The Man in the High Castle (Amazon Video, 2015) is an American dystopian alternative history television series created by Frank Spotnitz, based on the novel by Philip K. Dick. In an alternative ...more

49
163 496
Empire is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Terrence Howard, Taraji P. Henson, Bryshere Y. Gray Empire (Fox, 2015) is an American musical drama television series created by Lee Daniels and Danny Strong. The life of hip hop mogul, and CEO of Empire Entertainment Lucious Lyon (Terrence ...more

50
36 26
The Sinner is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows
Jessica Biel, Bill Pullman, Christopher Abbott The Sinner is an upcoming American drama television series based on the novel of the same name by Petra Hammesfahr. The series' first season follows the events that happen after a young mother ...more