Entertainment

The Best '80s TV Shows  

Ranker TV
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List Rules Only TV series that aired between 1980 and 1989

List of the best television shows from the '80s, as ranked by television fans. In the 1980s, sitcoms were among the most talked about and most watched shows on the air. Shows like Cheers, The Cosby Show, Murphy Brown, and The Golden Girls were always topics of conversation around the water cooler. Family sitcoms were especially popular, with the rise of shows like Family Ties, The Wonder Years, The Facts of Life, and Who’s the Boss.

Procedural crime dramas like Miami Vice, Knight Rider, and Remington Steele were popular, not only for the feather-haired hunks and uniquely '80s fashion, but also for their action-packed plots. The '80s also saw a rise in soap-style primetime television. The goings on in Dynasty and Dallas were constant topics of conversation. Many of the more popular shows lasted well into the next decade, but even some of the most well-remembered shows of the 80s only lasted a season or two, such as Max Headroom and The Greatest American Hero.

What are your favorite shows from the '80s? Take a look at this list filled with the best shows the '80s had to offer. Maybe you’ll be inspired to take out those old Betamax recordings and rewatch your favorite actually-good '80s shows that really hold up. For more 80s TV, check out the best shows set in the 1980s

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26
Full House is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
WarrenMitchell added 1987-1995
Full House is an American sitcom created by Jeff Franklin for ABC. The show chronicles a widowed father, who enlists his best friend and his brother-in-law to help raise his three daughters. It ...more
27
Laverne & Shirley is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1976
Laverne & Shirley is an American television sitcom that ran on ABC from January 27, 1976 to May 10, 1983. It starred Penny Marshall as Laverne De Fazio and Cindy Williams as Shirley Feeney, ...more
28
The Jetsons is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1962
The Jetsons is an American animated sitcom produced by Hanna-Barbera, originally airing in primetime from September 23, 1962 to March 17, 1963, then later in syndication, with new episodes in ...more
29
Growing Pains is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
Growing Pains (ABC, 1985) is an American television sitcom created by Neal Marlens. In Long Island, New York, Dr. Jason Seaver (Alan Thicke) and his wife, Maggie (Joanna Kerns), take care of ...more
30
The Love Boat is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1977-1987
The Love Boat is an American television series set on a cruise ship, which aired on the ABC Television Network from September 24, 1977, until February 27, 1987. The show revolves around the ...more
31
Little House on the Prairie is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
2005
Little House on the Prairie, also known as Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House on the Prairie, is a five-hour miniseries which was broadcast on ABC as part of The Wonderful World of Disney ...more
32
Charlie's Angels is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
Dimos Dicoudis added 1976
Charlie's Angels is an American drama television series that aired on ABC from September 22, 1976 to June 24, 1981, producing five seasons and 110 episodes. The series was created by Ivan Goff ...more
33
Remington Steele is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1982-1987
Remington Steele is an American television series co-created by Robert Butler and Michael Gleason. The series, starring Stephanie Zimbalist and Pierce Brosnan, was produced by MTM Enterprises ...more
34
The Tom and Jerry Comedy Show is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
Dimos Dicoudis added 1980
The Tom and Jerry Comedy Show is an animated television program produced by Filmation for MGM Television in 1980, on CBS for Saturday mornings. The show lasted two seasons and the individual ...more
35
The Muppet Show is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1976
The Muppet Show is a family-oriented comedy-variety television series that was produced by puppeteer Jim Henson and features The Muppets. After two pilot episodes produced in 1974 and 1975 ...more
36
Mork & Mindy is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
Dimos Dicoudis added 1978
Mork & Mindy is an American sitcom broadcast from 1978 to 1982 on ABC. It stars Robin Williams as Mork, an extraterrestrial who comes to Earth from the planet Ork in a small, one-man ...more
37
Dallas is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1978-1991
Dallas is a long-running American prime time television soap opera that aired from April 2, 1978, to May 3, 1991, on CBS. The series revolves around a wealthy and feuding Texan family, the ...more
38
Seinfeld is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
slaft added 1989
Seinfeld is an American television sitcom that originally ran for nine seasons on NBC from July 5, 1989, to May 14, 1998. It was created by Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld, the latter starring as ...more
39
The Incredible Hulk is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
Dimos Dicoudis added 1977
The Incredible Hulk is an American television series based on the Marvel Comics character The Hulk. The series aired on the CBS television network and starred Bill Bixby as David Banner, Lou ...more
40
The Tonight Show Starring John... is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1962
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson is a talk show hosted by Johnny Carson under The Tonight Show franchise from October 1, 1962 through May 22, 1992. It originally aired during late-night. ...more
41
Roseanne is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1988
Roseanne is an American sitcom that was broadcast on ABC from October 18, 1988, to May 20, 1997. Starring Roseanne Barr, the show revolved around the Conners, an Illinois working-class family. ...more
42
The Greatest American Hero is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1981-1983
The Greatest American Hero is an American comedy-drama television series that aired for three seasons from 1981 to 1983 on ABC. Created by producer Stephen J. Cannell, it premiered as a two-hour ...more
43
The Jeffersons is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
slaft added 1975
The Jeffersons is an American sitcom that was broadcast on CBS from January 18, 1975, through July 2, 1985, lasting 11 seasons and a total of 253 episodes. The show was produced by the T.A.T. ...more
44
The Facts of Life is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1979-1988
The Facts of Life is an American sitcom that originally ran on the NBC television network from August 24, 1979, to May 7, 1988, making it one of the longest running sitcoms of the 1980s. A ...more
45
Star Trek: The Next Generation is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1987
Star Trek: The Next Generation is an American science fiction television series created by Gene Roddenberry twenty-one years after the original Star Trek series debuted in 1966. Roddenberry, ...more
46
Diff'rent Strokes is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1978-1986
Diff'rent Strokes is an American television sitcom that aired on NBC from November 3, 1978, to May 4, 1985, and on ABC from September 27, 1985, to March 7, 1986. The series stars Gary Coleman ...more
47
He-Man and the Masters of the ... is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1983
He-Man and the Masters of the Universe is an American animated television series produced by Filmation based on Mattel's successful toy line Masters of the Universe. The show, often referred to ...more
48
Saved by the Bell is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1989
Saved by the Bell is an American television sitcom that aired on NBC from 1989 to 1993. A retool of the Disney Channel series Good Morning, Miss Bliss, the show follows a group of friends and ...more
49
The Smurfs is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1981
The Smurfs is an American-Belgian animated fantasy-comedy television series that aired on NBC from September 12, 1981, to December 2, 1989. Made by Hanna-Barbera Productions, it is based on the ...more
50
L.A. Law is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best '80s TV Shows
1986-1994
L.A. Law is an American television legal drama series that ran for eight seasons on NBC from September 15, 1986 to May 19, 1994. Created by Steven Bochco and Terry Louise Fisher, it contained ...more