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The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time 

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Updated November 21, 2019 26.1k votes 3.5k voters 178.1k views 103 items

List Rules Only TV shows (or miniseries) that heavily feature action sequences in every episode.

The very best action shows on television, ranked from best to worst. Popular action TV shows have been a staple of television for years, so what do you think is the most entertaining action show of all time is. Trust us, it's debated.  Don't let your favorite action television programs in history 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 action television shows below includes information like the program's cast, creator and premiere date when available. What are the best action shows? All of them? Probably. Certainly there have been a lot of great action shows in the past decade.

List shows include everything from 24 to Arrow, and many other shows that are nothing but full-throttle adrenaline forever!

Looking for some good action TV shows to watch? You're in the right spot, my friend. It's time for a serious bro-down.

This list answers the questions, "What is the best action show of all time?" and "What are the greatest action TV series?"

Data-driven recommendations based on voting from over 40 million monthly visits to Ranker. Try the free app
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1
24 is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Kiefer Sutherland, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Carlos Bernard

Premiered: 2001

Number of Seasons: 8

Number of Episodes: 24

Network: Fox Broadcasting Company

24 is an American television series produced for the Fox network created by Joel Surnow and Robert Cochran, and starring Kiefer Sutherland as Counter Terrorist Unit agent Jack Bauer. Each ...more

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#104 of 281 The Best Cult TV Shows of All Time Ranking The Best Seasons of '24'listed on Longest Running US Drama Shows

2
Arrow is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Stephen Amell, Katie Cassidy, Colin Donnell

Premiered: 2012

Number of Seasons: 8

Number of Episodes: 170

Network: The CW Television Network

Arrow (The CW, 2012) 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 ...more

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#54 of 310 The Best Sci Fi Television Series of All Time #63 of 281 The Best Cult TV Shows of All Time The Coolest Characters from CW's Arrow

3
Daredevil is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
MarioArley added Charlie Cox, Deborah Ann Woll, Elden Henson

Premiered: 2015

Network: Netflix

If you like Daredevil, check out the other best action shows on Netflix.

Daredevil (Netflix, 2015) is an American web television series created for Netflix by Drew Goddard, based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name. Blind lawyer Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox) ...more

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#52 of 310 The Best Sci Fi Television Series of All Time #494 of 594 The Best TV Theme Songs of All Time #53 of 396 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate

4
Prison Break is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Dominic Purcell, Wentworth Miller, Amaury Nolasco

Premiered: 2005

Number of Seasons: 4

Number of Episodes: 81

Network: Fox Broadcasting Company

Prison Break is an American television serial drama created by Paul Scheuring, that was broadcast on Fox for four seasons, from 2005 until 2009. The series revolves around two brothers; one has ...more

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#145 of 281 The Best Cult TV Shows of All Time #490 of 594 The Best TV Theme Songs of All Time The Best Seasons of Prison Break

5
Band of Brothers is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Scott Grimes, Damian Lewis, Ron Livingston

Premiered: 2001

Number of Episodes: 10

Network: British Broadcasting Corporation, HBO

Band of Brothers is a 2001 American WWII drama miniseries based on historian Stephen E. Ambrose's 1992 non-fiction book of the same name. The executive producers were Steven Spielberg and Tom ...more

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6
The Blacklist is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Mazen Nasser added James Spader, Megan Boone, Diego Klattenhoff

Premiered: 2013

Network: NBC

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

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7
Burn Notice is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
MarioArley added Jeffrey Donovan, Gabrielle Anwar, Bruce Campbell

Premiered: 2007

Number of Seasons: 6

Number of Episodes: 90

Network: USA Network

Burn Notice is an American television series created by Matt Nix which originally aired on the USA Network from June 28, 2007 to September 12, 2013. The show stars Jeffrey Donovan, Gabrielle ...more

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#120 of 779 The Best TV Shows to Binge Watch #148 of 217 The TV Shows with the Best Writing The Best Seasons of Burn Notice

8
The Flash is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
crazyvamp added Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Danielle Panabaker

Premiered: 2014

Number of Seasons: 6

Number of Episodes: 114

Network: The CW

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

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#63 of 779 The Best TV Shows to Binge Watch #36 of 310 The Best Sci Fi Television Series of All Time The Best Characters On 'The Flash'

9
The A-Team is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
George Peppard, Mr. T, Dwight Schultz

Premiered: 1983

Number of Seasons: 5

Number of Episodes: 98

Network: NBC

The A-Team is an American action-adventure television series, running from 1983 to 1987, about a fictional group of ex–U.S. Army personnel who escape and, while still on the run from the army, ...more

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#33 of 594 The Best TV Theme Songs of All Time #124 of 578 TV Shows Canceled Before Their Time

10
Justified is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Timothy Olyphant, Nick Searcy, Joelle Carter

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 3

Number of Episodes: 52

Network: FX

Justified is an American television drama series developed by Graham Yost. It is based on Elmore Leonard's short story. Timothy Olyphant portrays Raylan Givens, a tough U.S. Marshal enforcing ...more

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#354 of 594 The Best TV Theme Songs of All Time #97 of 396 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate The Best Seasons of Justified

11
Vikings is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
95hvj added Travis Fimmel, Katheryn Winnick, Clive Standen

Premiered: 2013

Number of Seasons: 1

Number of Episodes: 9

Network: History

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

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#4 of 128 The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows #26 of 396 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate Turns Out The Real Inspiration For 'Vikings' Lagertha Is Even Tougher Than The TV Version

12
The Walking Dead is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Mazen Nasser added Andrew Lincoln, Jon Bernthal, Sarah Wayne Callies

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 3

Number of Episodes: 35

Network: AMC

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

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#3 of 779 The Best TV Shows to Binge Watch #1 of 128 The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows When Did You Give Up On 'The Walking Dead'?

13
Magnum, P.I. is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Brian White added Tom Selleck, John Hillerman, Roger E. Mosley

Premiered: 1980

Number of Seasons: 8

Number of Episodes: 157

Network: CBS

Magnum, P.I. is an American television series starring Tom Selleck as Thomas Magnum, a private investigator living on Oahu, Hawaii. The series ran from 1980 to 1988 in first-run broadcast on the ...more

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14
Chuck is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Zachary Levi, Yvonne Strahovski, Joshua Gomez

Premiered: 2007

Number of Seasons: 5

Number of Episodes: 91

Network: NBC

Chuck (NBC, 2007) is an American action-comedy/spy-drama television series created by Josh Schwartz and Chris Fedak. When a twenty-something computer geek (Zachary Levi) inadvertently downloads ...more

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#93 of 779 The Best TV Shows to Binge Watch #133 of 217 The TV Shows with the Best Writing The Best Seasons of Chuck

15
Star Trek: The Original ... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Moonpie66 added William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley

Premiered: 1966

Number of Seasons: 3

Number of Episodes: 79

Network: NBC

Star Trek is an American science fiction television series created by Gene Roddenberry that follows the adventures of the starship USS Enterprise and its crew. It later acquired the retronym of ...more

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#4 of 310 The Best Sci Fi Television Series of All Time #3 of 281 The Best Cult TV Shows of All Time #27 of 594 The Best TV Theme Songs of All Time

16
Sons of Anarchy is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Charlie Hunnam, Katey Sagal, Mark Boone Junior

Premiered: 2008

Number of Seasons: 5

Number of Episodes: 66

Network: FX

Sons of Anarchy is an American drama television series created by Kurt Sutter, about the lives of a close-knit outlaw motorcycle club operating in Charming, a fictional town in California's ...more

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#351 of 594 The Best TV Theme Songs of All Time #88 of 217 The TV Shows with the Best Writing 'Sons Of Anarchy' Fan Theories

17
Dexter is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, David Zayas

Premiered: 2006

Number of Seasons: 7

Number of Episodes: 80

Network: Showtime

Dexter is an American television drama series. Set in Miami, the series centers on Dexter Morgan, a blood spatter pattern analyst for Miami Metro Police Department who also leads a secret life ...more

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18
The Punisher is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Jon Bernthal, Ben Barnes, Ebon Moss-Bachrach

Premiered: 2017

Number of Seasons: 2

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

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19
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. ... is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Clark Gregg, Ming-Na Wen, Brett Dalton

Premiered: 2013

Number of Seasons: 1

Number of Episodes: 13

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

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20
Battlestar Galactica is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Brian White added Lorne Greene, Richard Hatch, Dirk Benedict

Premiered: 1978

Number of Seasons: 1

Number of Episodes: 75

Network: Syfy

Battlestar Galactica is an American military science fiction television series, and part of the Battlestar Galactica franchise. The show was developed by Ronald D. Moore and executive produced ...more

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#68 of 779 The Best TV Shows to Binge Watch #3 of 310 The Best Sci Fi Television Series of All Time The Best Seasons of Battlestar Galactica

21
Banshee is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
95hvj added Antony Starr, Ivana Milicevic, Ulrich Thomsen
Banshee is an American action-drama television series created by Jonathan Tropper and David Schickler originally appearing on the Cinemax network beginning on January 11, 2013. Set in the small ...more

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22
Hawaii Five-0 is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
MTahmisian added Leonard Freeman, Alex Kurtzman, Peter M. Lenkov

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 2

Number of Episodes: 71

Network: CBS

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

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#212 of 779 The Best TV Shows to Binge Watch #32 of 128 The Best Current Dramatic TV Shows Best Seasons of Hawaii Five-0

23
Mission: Impossible is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
Greer Baudreau added Peter Graves, Barbara Bain, Greg Morris

Premiered: 1966

Number of Seasons: 7

Number of Episodes: 171

Network: CBS

Mission: Impossible is an American television series that was created and initially produced by Bruce Geller. It chronicles the missions of a team of secret government agents known as the ...more

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24
Jack Ryan is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Action TV Shows Of All Time
John Krasinski, Abbie Cornish, Mena Massoud
Jack Ryan (Amazon Video, 2018) is an American television series created by Carlton Cuse and Graham Roland, based on the character created by Tom Clancy. When CIA analyst Jack Ryan (John ...more

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25
Ranker Video
Mazen Nasser added Sullivan Stapleton, Philip Winchester, Michelle Lukes

Premiered: 2010

Number of Episodes: 2

Network: Sky1

Strike Back is a British/American action and military television series, based on a novel of the same name by novelist and former Special Air Service soldier Chris Ryan. The series follows the ...more

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