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.
- A psychiatrist travels through time to alter people's futures for the better.
- The Cunningham family enjoys life in 1950s Milwaukee.
- George, Jane, Judy, Elroy and their dog Astro, live the easy life thousands of years in the future.
- An alien studies Earth's strange ways in Boulder, Colorado.
- Animated adventures of Tom the cat and Jerry the mouse.
- Fugitives help victims while being pursued as criminals.
- Two single girls in need of a roommate settle for Jack Tripper.
- A resourceful agent undertakes secret missions for the government.
- Army surgeons blow off steam between hours of combat surgery.
- Private investigator Thomas Magnum solves crimes in Hawaii.
- Kermit, Miss Piggy and other Muppets welcome guest stars.
- Dr. Johnny Fever heads a cast of offbeat characters at radio station WKRP.
- Tales of science fiction, fantasy and the occult.
- The Duke cousins fight corruption in Hazzard County.
- Psychiatrist Jason Seaver raises a family in suburban New York.
- A misogynistic husband and a lazy housewife tolerate each other while raising two children.
- The ideals of parents and teens clash due to their generation gap.
- Homer and Marge Simpson raise Bart, Lisa and baby Maggie in Springfield.
- Sam Malone, former reliever for the Red Sox, runs a Boston bar where "everybody knows your name."
- Michael Knight and his high-tech, intelligent car thwart evil.
- Judge Harry Stone presides over the night shift of a Manhattan courtroom.
- Four older women share a house in Miami Beach.
- A research scientist, who changes into a green man-monster when angered, searches for an antidote.
- Widower Tony Micelli is the housekeeper for a female ad executive.
- Two detectives work undercover in Miami.