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The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made  

Ranker TV
2.1k votes 172 voters 1.8k views 55 items

List Rules Only science fiction (not fantasy) television series that historically offer galactic levels of excitement.

The top sci-fi TV shows ever aired are some of the most exciting and thought-provoking to watch on television, but which is the best of them all? Determining which science fiction TV series is the best isn't an easy task given the plethora of options available, but this list might make it just a bit easier. These days, with the use of digital streaming, more and more shows people have forgotten are being rewatched, checked out for the first time, or even remade into new classics for new generations to enjoy, but which of these sci-fi shows is the best of them all in terms of excitement?

Would something newer like Star Trek: Discovery beat out a classic on this list like Star Trek: The Original Series, the very show that inspired it? For a science fiction series to be truly exciting, it has to be the kind that depicts more than just cool new tech or rapid-fire sci-fi action scenes - it needs to show a conflict between one or more groups of people, aliens, robots, or whatever in which survival is key. An exciting sci-fi show gets the audience has to get invested in the story.

The only way to find out which are the best is to vote up your favorite sci-fi series below, but remember, this list is all about excitement! Which series is more exciting than the one below it? Don't forget to add your favorite sci-fi show to the list if it's missing and vote for your favorites below!

list ordered by
1
Firefly is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Nathan Fillion, Gina Torres, Alan Tudyk
Firefly is an American space western science fiction drama television series created by writer and director Joss Whedon, under his Mutant Enemy Productions label. Whedon served as an executive ...more
2
Star Trek: The Original Series is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley
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
3
Star Trek: The Next Generation is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Patrick Stewart, Brent Spiner, Jonathan Frakes
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
4
Stargate SG-1 is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Richard Dean Anderson, Michael Shanks, Amanda Tapping
Stargate SG-1 is an adventure and military science fiction television series and part of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's Stargate franchise. The show, created by Brad Wright and Jonathan Glassner, is ...more
5
Battlestar Galactica is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Edward James Olmos, Mary McDonnell, Jamie Bamber
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
6
The Mandalorian is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Pedro Pascal, Gina Carano, Nick Nolte
The Mandalorian (Disney+, 2019) is an American space opera web television series set in the Star Wars universe created by George Lucas. Taking place after the events in Return of the Jedi, but ...more
7
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Avery Brooks, Rene Auberjonois, Cirroc Lofton
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine is a science fiction television series set in the Star Trek universe. The show is set in the Milky Way galaxy, in the years 2369–2375. In contrast to the setting of ...more
8
Stargate Atlantis is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Joe Flanigan, Rachel Luttrell, David Hewlett
Stargate Atlantis is a Canadian-American adventure and military science fiction television series and part of MGM's Stargate franchise. The show was created by Brad Wright and Robert C. Cooper ...more
9
Star Trek: Enterprise is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Scott Bakula, John Billingsley, Jolene Blalock
Star Trek: Enterprise is a science fiction TV series and a prequel to the original Star Trek. The series premiered September 26, 2001, on the UPN television network with the final episode airing ...more
10
The Expanse is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Thomas Jane, Steven Strait, Cas Anvar
The Expanse (Syfy, 2015) is an American science fiction television series developed by Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby, based on the novels by James S. A. Corey. In a future where humanity has ...more
11
Doctor Who is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Christopher Eccleston, David Tennant, Matt Smith
Doctor Who (BBC, 2005) is a British science-fiction television show created by Sydney Newman, C. E. Webber, and Donald Wilson. The further adventures in time and space of the alien adventurer ...more
12
Babylon 5 is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Jerry Doyle, Mira Furlan, Richard Biggs
Babylon 5 is an American space opera television series created by writer and producer J. Michael Straczynski, under the Babylonian Productions label, in association with Straczynski's Synthetic ...more
13
Battlestar Galactica is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Edward James Olmos, Mary McDonnell, Jamie Bamber
Battlestar Galactica is an American science fiction television series, created by Glen A. Larson, that began the Battlestar Galactica franchise. Starring Lorne Greene, Richard Hatch and Dirk ...more
14
Altered Carbon is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Joel Kinnaman, Renée Elise Goldsberry, James Purefoy
Altered Carbon is an American science fiction television series created by Laeta Kalogridis, based on the novel by Richard K. Morgan. In a future where human minds are digitized and downloaded ...more
15
Farscape is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Ben Browder, Claudia Black, Anthony Simcoe
Farscape is an Australian/American science fiction television series, produced originally for the Nine Network. The series was conceived by Rockne S. O'Bannon and produced by Jim Henson ...more
16
Stranger Things is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Finn Wolfhard
Stranger Things (Netflix, 2016) is an American science fiction-horror web television series created by The Duffer Brothers. When a young boy (Noah Schnapp) disappears, his mother (Winona Ryder), ...more
17
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Clark Gregg, Ming-Na Wen, Brett Dalton
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
18
Fringe is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Anna Torv, Joshua Jackson, Jasika Nicole
Fringe is an American science fiction television series created by J. J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman, and Roberto Orci. It premiered on the Fox Broadcasting network on September 9, 2008, and concluded ...more
19
Falling Skies is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Noah Wyle, Drew Roy, Maxim Knight
Falling Skies is an American science fiction post-apocalyptic dramatic television series created by Robert Rodat and executive produced by Steven Spielberg. The series stars Noah Wyle as Tom ...more
20
Star Trek: Voyager is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Kate Mulgrew, Robert Beltran, Roxann Dawson
Star Trek: Voyager is a science fiction television series, set in the Star Trek universe. The show takes place during the 2370s, and begins on the far side of the Milky Way galaxy, 75,000 ...more
21
Sliders is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Jerry O'Connell, Sabrina Lloyd, John Rhys-Davies
Sliders is an American science fiction and fantasy television series created by Robert K. Weiss and Tracy Tormé. It was broadcast for five seasons between 1995 and 2000. The series ...more
22
Eureka is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Colin Ferguson, Salli Richardson-Whitfield, Erica Cerra
Eureka was an American science fiction television series that premiered on Syfy on July 18, 2006. The fifth and final season ended on July 16, 2012. The show was set in a fictional town in ...more
23
Westworld is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Evan Rachel Wood, Thandie Newton, Jeffrey Wright
Westworld (HBO, 2016) is an American science fiction western thriller television series created by Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy, and based on the 1973 film. In a technologically advanced Wild ...more
24
Orphan Black is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Tatiana Maslany, Dylan Bruce, Jordan Gavaris
Orphan Black is a Canadian science fiction television series created by screenwriter Graeme Manson and director John Fawcett, starring Tatiana Maslany as several identical people who are, in ...more
25
V is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi Series Ever Made
Robert Englund, Michael Ironside, Lane Smith
V is a 1983 film directed by Kenneth Johnson.