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The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made 

Ranker TV
Updated June 29, 2020 2.5k votes 187 voters 8.4k views 58 items

List Rules Vote up the best kids live-action shows that have aired on television.

Chances are if you grew up sometime in the latter half of the 20th century, your childhood was filled with amazing children’s television programs created solely for the entertainment of kids. Live-action kids shows are nothing new, which is why everyone has their absolute favorites. Whether you fondly remember a show you grew up with or came to love one that your children enjoyed (though some of the best kids shows have been on the air for decades), chances are, you have an absolute favorite!

The best live-action shows for kids are easily some of the best series ever made for children - not just something that children could also watch, but made specifically with kids in mind - offering something different than cartoons. There are hundreds of amazing programs in this genre to choose from, to narrow it down, this list has highlighted the very best kids live-action series of them all, but not every show is created equally. Whether you appreciate and enjoy these series for their kid-friendly comedy sitcoms, or for the way they helped us all learn our A-B-Cs, these series are the best kids shows of all time.

This list is only focusing on non-animated, live-action, series not animated or cartoons - though puppets count as live action! - so please vote up your favorite, and don't forget to add any great live-action kids shows we missed.

list ordered by
1
Mister Rogers' Neighborh... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Keith David, Fred Rogers, Don Francks

Premiered: 1968

Mister Rogers' Neighborhood is an American half-hour children's television series that was created and hosted by namesake Fred Rogers. The series originated in 1963 as Mister Rogers on CBC ...more
2
Sesame Street is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Caroll Spinney

Premiered: 1969

Sesame Street is a long-running American children's television series created by Joan Ganz Cooney and Lloyd Morrisett. The program is known for its educational content, and images communicated ...more
3
The Muppet Show is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Richard Hunt

Premiered: 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
4
The Suite Life of Zack &... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Cole Sprouse, Dylan Sprouse, Brenda Song

Premiered: 2005

The Suite Life of Zack & Cody is an American sitcom created by Danny Kallis and Jim Geoghan. The series was first broadcast on Disney Channel on March 18, 2005, with 4 million viewers, ...more
5
Bill Nye the Science Guy... is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Ed Begley Jr., Rachelle Carson, Bill Nye

Premiered: 1993

Bill Nye the Science Guy is a live action educational television program that originally aired from September 10, 1993 to June 20, 1998 and was hosted by Bill Nye. The show aired on PBS Kids and ...more
6
Blue's Clues is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Steve Burns, Traci Paige Johnson, Seth O'Hickory

Premiered: 1996

Blue's Clues is an American children's television series that premiered on Nickelodeon. Producers Angela Santomero, Todd Kessler and Traci Paige Johnson combined concepts from child development ...more
7
Drake & Josh is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Drake Bell, Josh Peck, Miranda Cosgrove

Premiered: 2004

Drake & Josh (Nickelodeon, 2004) is an American sitcom created by Dan Schneider. Despite having opposite personalities, stepbrothers Drake Parker (Drake Bell) and Josh Nichols (Josh Peck) ...more
8
Wizards of Waverly Place... is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Selena Gomez, David Henrie, Jake T. Austin

Premiered: 2007

Wizards of Waverly Place is an American fantasy teen sitcom which ran from October 12, 2007 to January 6, 2012 on Disney Channel. The series was created by Todd J. Greenwald, and stars Selena ...more
9
Boy Meets World is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Ben Savage, Rider Strong, William Daniels

Premiered: 1993

Boy Meets World (ABC, 1993) is an American television sitcom created by Michael Jacobs and April Kelly. An adolescent (Ben Savage) with two siblings tests his various theories about life as he ...more
10
Reading Rainbow is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
LeVar Burton, Jennifer Betit Yen, Arnold Stang

Premiered: 1983

Reading Rainbow is an American children's television series that aired on PBS Kids and PBS Kids Go! from June 6, 1983, until November 10, 2006, that encouraged children to read. In 2012 an iPad ...more
11
iCarly is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Miranda Cosgrove, Jennette McCurdy, Nathan Kress

Premiered: 2007

iCarly is an American teen sitcom that ran on Nickelodeon from September 8, 2007 until November 23, 2012. The series was created by Dan Schneider. It focuses on teenager Carly Shay, who creates ...more
12
Sabrina, the Teenage Wit... is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Melissa Joan Hart, Caroline Rhea, Beth Broderick

Premiered: 1996

Sabrina, the Teenage Witch is an American sitcom based on the Archie comic book series of the same name. The show premiered on September 27, 1996, on ABC to over 17 million viewers in its ...more
13
The Suite Life on Deck ... is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Dylan Sprouse, Cole Sprouse, Brenda Song

Premiered: 2008

The Suite Life on Deck is an American sitcom that aired on Disney Channel from September 26, 2008 to May 6, 2011. It is a sequel/spin-off of the Disney Channel Original Series The Suite Life of ...more
14
Fraggle Rock is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Jim Henson, Richard Hunt, Dave Goelz

Premiered: 1983

Fraggle Rock is a British/American/Canadian children's live action puppet television series created by Jim Henson, about a society of Muppet creatures called Fraggles. Fraggle Rock was ...more
15
Goosebumps is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
R.L. Stine, Kathryn Short, Cody Jones

Premiered: 1995

Goosebumps is a Canadian horror fantasy anthology television series based on R. L. Stine's Goosebumps books. It was one of the two popular television horror anthology children's series in the ...more
16
Mighty Morphin Power Ran... is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Richard Steven Horvitz, David Yost, David J. Fielding

Premiered: 1993

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers is an American live action children's television series that premiered on August 28, 1993, on the Fox Kids weekday afternoon block. The show is about a group of ...more
17
Saved by the Bell is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Mario Lopez, Dustin Diamond

Premiered: 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
18
Girl Meets World is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Rowan Blanchard, Sabrina Carpenter, Ben Savage

Premiered: 2013

A decade after "Boy Meets World," Cory and Topanga Matthews are married and have two children. The younger child, a daughter named Riley, faces life lessons through her family, ...more
19
Clarissa Explains It All... is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Melissa Joan Hart, Jason Zimbler, Elizabeth Hess

Premiered: 1991

Clarissa Explains It All is an American teen sitcom that aired on Nickelodeon. Created by Mitchell Kriegman, it aired for five seasons and a total of 65 episodes from March 23, 1991, to December ...more
20
Double Dare is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Lou Ferrigno, Jennifer Malone, 'Weird Al' Yankovic

Premiered: 2000

Double Dare is a children's game show, originally hosted by Marc Summers, that aired on Nickelodeon. The show combines trivia questions with occasionally messy "physical challenges". ...more
21
Family Matters is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Reginald VelJohnson, Jaleel White, Kellie Shanygne Williams

Premiered: 1989

Family Matters is an American sitcom which originated on ABC network from September 22, 1989 to May 9, 1997 and then aired on CBS network from September 19, 1997, to July 17, 1998. A spin-off of ...more
22
Zoey 101 is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Jamie Lynn Spears, Paul Butcher, Christopher Massey

Premiered: 2005

Zoey 101 is an American television series which originally aired on Nickelodeon from January 9, 2005 until May 2, 2008. It focuses on the lives of teenager Zoey Brooks and her friends as they ...more
23
Are You Afraid of the Da... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Ross Hull, Raine Pare-Coull, Jodie Resther

Premiered: 1991

Are You Afraid of the Dark? is a Canadian horror fantasy-themed anthology television series. The original series was created by D.J. MacHale and Ned Kandel, and was picked up by Nickelodeon in ...more
24
All That is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
Amanda Bynes, Nick Cannon, Kenan Thompson

Premiered: 1994

All That is an American sketch comedy television series created by Brian Robbins and Mike Tollin. The series originally aired on Nickelodeon from April 16, 1994 to October 22, 2005, lasting ten ...more
25
The Electric Company is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Kids Live Action TV Shows Ever Made
The Electric Company Morgan Freeman, Joan Rivers, Bill Cosby

Premiered: 1971

The Electric Company is an educational American children's television series that was directed by Bob Schwartz, Henry Behar and John Tracy, written by Christopher Cerf, Jeremy Steven and John ...more