The Best MTV Original Shows  

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List Rules Past and present original MTV series

The best MTV original shows include reality shows, music series, comedies, and dramas, as well as animated series. MTV started out as "Music Television" in 1981, but over the years, the programming has greatly expanded. These days, it's tough to find an actual music show on the network. That being said, viewers have no doubt enjoyed a lot of MTV's original shows. Which one is the best? That's for you to decide, with your votes. Also, if you have a personal favorite original MTV series (past or present) that isn't listed here, feel free to add it.

Some of the most popular MTV original programs are, not surprisingly, reality shows. Among them: The wildly popular Jersey Shore, which will conclude after six seasons. This show made household names out of it's stars, especially Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi, Michael "The Situation" Sorrentino and Jennifer "JWoww" Farley. A spinoff, 'Snooki & JWoww,' began airing in June of 2012 as well.

Other well-known current MTV original shows include Teen Mom, 16 and PregnantMade and True Life. MTV also has a hit on its hands with the original drama series Teen Wolf, starring Tyler Posey as Scott McCall, a full-time high school student/werewolf.

Animated original MTV programming are also extremely popular. Examples, you say? How about the animated TV series Beavis and Butt-head (which returned with new episodes in 2011) or the spinoff Daria, which aired for five seasons?

Several of MTV's best original shows could, arguably, be listed among the best TV shows of recent memory -- depending on how you define that, of course. TV fans, if you love reality television shows, check out these lists of the best reality competition shows and reality dramas, and paranormal reality shows ever.
list ordered by
Real World is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Jamie Chung, Steven Hill, Landon Lueck
The Real World is a reality television program on MTV originally produced by Mary-Ellis Bunim and Jonathan Murray. First broadcast in 1992, the show, which was inspired by the 1973 PBS ...more
Jackass is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Johnny Knoxville, Bam Margera, Brandon DiCamillo
Jackass is an American reality series, originally shown on MTV from 2000 to 2002, featuring people performing various dangerous, crude, self-injuring stunts and pranks. The show served as a ...more
Punk'd is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Ashton Kutcher, Brian Fitzpatrick, Andrew Santino
Punk'd is an American hidden camera-practical joke reality television series that first aired on MTV in 2003 and was created by Ashton Kutcher and Jason Goldberg, and produced and hosted by ...more
MTV Cribs is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Su-chin Pak
MTV Cribs and CMT Cribs, depending on which channel it airs, is a franchise reality television program that originated on the MTV Networks' MTV. It later aired on its CMT channel that features ...more
Daria is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Tracy Grandstaff, Wendy Hoopes, Julian Rebolledo
Daria is an American animated television series created by Glenn Eichler and Susie Lewis Lynn for MTV. The series focuses on Daria Morgendorffer, a smart, acerbic, and somewhat misanthropic ...more
Celebrity Deathmatch is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Maurice Schlafer, Len Maxwell, Mills Lane
Celebrity Deathmatch was a claymation television show that depicted celebrities against each other in a wrestling ring, almost always ending in the loser's gruesome death. It was known for its ...more
MTV Unplugged is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Jules Shear
MTV Unplugged is a TV series showcasing many popular musical artists usually playing acoustic instruments. The show has received the George Foster Peabody Award and 3 Primetime Emmy nominations ...more
Beavis and Butt-head is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Mike Judge, Dale Revo, Tracy Grandstaff
Beavis and Butt-head is an American animated sitcom created and designed by Mike Judge. The series originated from "Frog Baseball", a 1992 short film by Judge originally aired on ...more
Pimp My Ride is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Xzibit, Buck
Pimp My Ride is a TV show produced by MTV and hosted by rapper Xzibit. Each episode consists of taking one car in poor condition and restoring it, as well as customizing it. The original ...more
True Life is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Serena Altschul
True Life is an American documentary television series that has been airing on MTV since March 31, 1998. Each episode follows a particular topic, such as heroin addiction as in the first episode ...more
Catfish: The TV Show is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Ferry73 added
Catfish: The TV Show is an American reality-based docu-series television series airing on MTV about the truths and lies of online dating. The series is based on the 2010 film Catfish and is ...more
Room Raiders is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Tim-Ryan O'Kane, Tom Oberdick, Jesse Wolter
Room Raiders is a "dating/reality" series on MTV.
The Challenge is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
T.J. Lavin, Johnny 'Bananas' Devenanzio, Aneesa Ferreira
The Challenge is a reality game show on MTV that is spun off from the network's two reality shows, The Real World and the now cancelled Road Rules. It features alumni from these two shows, in ...more
Jersey Shore is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Ronnie Ortiz-Magro, Vinny Guadagnino, Jenni 'Jwoww' Farley
Jersey Shore is an American reality television series which ran on MTV from December 3, 2009 to December 20, 2012 in the United States. The series follows the lives of eight housemates spending ...more
TRL is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Hilarie Burton, Susie Castillo, Nick Zano
Total Request Live is a television series on MTV that featured popular music videos. TRL was MTV's prime outlet for music videos as the network continued to concentrate on reality-based ...more
Ridiculousness is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Alaina Hillman added Sterling Brim, Chanel West Coast, Rob Dyrdek
Ridiculousness is an American comedy clip show that began airing on August 29, 2011. On television, the show is rated TV-14 due to language and violence, hosted by Rob Dyrdek and co-hosted by ...more
Awkward. is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Ashley Rickards, Beau Mirchoff, Jillian Rose Reed
Awkward is an American teen comedy series created by Lauren Iungerich for MTV. The show's central character is Jenna Hamilton, a Palos Verdes, California, teenager who struggles with her ...more
Rob & Big is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
ryanjjjj8 added Julie Bennett, Greg Burson, Kathy Garver
Rob & Big is an American reality television series that follows the lives of professional skateboarder/actor/producer Rob Dyrdek and his best friend and bodyguard Christopher "Big ...more
Next is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Lorin Eric Salm, Michael McKinley, Jamieson Hill
Next is a dating game show produced by Kallissa Productions which ran on MTV from 2005–2008.
Viva La Bam is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Samantha Dillinger added Bam Margera, Vincent Margera, Ryan Dunn
Viva La Bam is an American reality television series that stars Bam Margera and his friends and family. The show was a spin-off from MTV's Jackass, in which Margera and most of the main cast had ...more
Parental Control is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Parental Control is a heavily scripted "pseudo-reality" program produced by MTV. The two directors, Brendon Carter and Bruce Klassen, have also created other MTV shows. In Asia, this ...more
Singled Out is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Carmen Electra
Singled Out is a game show that ran on MTV from 1995 to 1998. Each episode featured a group of 50 men and a group of 50 women competing for a date with one main contestant of the opposite sex. ...more
The Osbournes is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
Ozzy Osbourne, Sharon Osbourne, Jack Osbourne
The Osbournes is an American reality television program featuring the domestic life of heavy metal singer Ozzy Osbourne and his family. The series premiered on MTV on March 5, 2002, and in its ...more
Made is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
MTV's MADE is a self-improvement reality television series broadcast on MTV. The series follows teens who have a goal and want to be "made" into things like singers, athletes, dancers, ...more
Silent Library is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best MTV Original Shows
killakane94 added Zero Kazama
Silent Library is an Europe television game show which aired on MTV and MuchMusic. The series is based on one of the segments in the popular Japanese variety show Downtown no Gaki no Tsukai ya ...more