Total Nerd The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows Ever Made  

Ranker TV
1k votes 84 voters 53 items

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

The best 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 - it needs to show a conflict between one or more groups of people, aliens, robots, or whatever in which survival is key. 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
33 11
Battlestar Galactica is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
2
32 12
Firefly is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
3
30 11
Star Trek: The Original Series is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
4
16 8
Farscape is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
5
21 13
Star Trek: The Next Generation is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
6
21 13
Star Trek: Enterprise is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
7
12 6
V is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows Ever Made
Robert Englund, Michael Ironside, Lane Smith
V is a 1983 film directed by Kenneth Johnson.
8
17 11
Doctor Who is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
9
18 13
Stargate Atlantis is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
10
16 12
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
11
16 12
Falling Skies is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
12
15 11
V is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows Ever Made
Elizabeth Mitchell, Morris Chestnut, Joel Gretsch
V is an American science fiction television series that ran for two seasons on ABC, from November 3, 2009 to March 15, 2011. A remake of the 1983 miniseries created by Kenneth Johnson, the new ...more
13
13 9
Battlestar Galactica is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
13 9
Space: 1999 is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows Ever Made
Martin Landau, Barbara Bain, Nick Tate
Space: 1999 is a British-Italian science-fiction television series that ran for two seasons and originally aired from 1975 to 1977. In the opening episode, set in September 1999, nuclear waste ...more
15
10 6
Red Dwarf is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows Ever Made
Chris Barrie, Craig Charles, Danny John-Jules
Red Dwarf is a British comedy franchise which primarily comprises ten series of a television science fiction sitcom that aired on BBC Two between 1988 and 1993 and from 1997 to 1999, and on Dave ...more
16
12 9
Babylon 5 is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
17
7 4
Lost in Space is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows Ever Made
Guy Williams, June Lockhart, Mark Goddard
Lost in Space is an American science fiction television series created and produced by Irwin Allen, filmed by 20th Century Fox Television, and broadcast on CBS. The show ran for three seasons, ...more
18
16 14
Caprica is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows Ever Made
Eric Stoltz, Esai Morales, Paula Malcomson
Caprica is an American science fiction drama television series. A spin-off prequel of the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica taking place 58 years before the cataclysmic destruction of the ...more
19
13 11
Stargate SG-1 is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
20
13 11
Andromeda is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows Ever Made
Kevin Sorbo, Lisa Ryder, Laura Bertram
Andromeda is a Canadian/American science fiction television series, based on unused material by the late Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, developed by Robert Hewitt Wolfe, and produced by ...more
21
12 10
The Expanse is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
22
10 8
Westworld is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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
23
7 5
Buck Rogers in the 25th Centur... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows Ever Made
Gil Gerard, Erin Gray, Felix Silla
Buck Rogers in the 25th Century is an American science fiction adventure television series produced by Universal Studios. The series ran for two seasons between 1979–1981, and the feature-length ...more
24
12 11
Quantum Leap is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows Ever Made
Scott Bakula, Dean Stockwell, Deborah Pratt
Quantum Leap is an American television series that originally aired on NBC for five seasons, from March 1989 through May 1993. Created by Donald P. Bellisario, it starred Scott Bakula as Dr. Sam ...more
25
11 10
Star Trek: Voyager is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Most Exciting Sci-Fi TV Shows 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