The behind the scenes drama of “The Walking Dead” may have been a little tumultuous, but its creators never failed to produce riveting episodes on-screen. The show has achieved the title of cable’s highest-rated drama of all time, making it a shoe-in for the top spot on this ranking. “The Walking Dead” masterfully proves that a zombie show can have more to it than just blood and gore.
“Daredevil” proves that Netflix and Marvel’s collaboration should be worth our while. The show stands out from other television comic offerings with its dark, gritty and realistic tone. It also separates itself from the pack by offering far more developed characters than your average comic-inspired show.
Despite never having huge ratings, "Agent Carter” has very much earned its second season, especially since the show was originally intended to be a mini series. However, after proving to be of a higher quality than the show it came from (“Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."), it achieved an unexpected renewal and we couldn't be happier.
Whether you’re a bigger fan of “The Flash” or the show it came from (“Arrow") likely depends on if you prefer a charming or a gritty tone. Grant Gustin as Barry Allen creates a humor and sympathy for the character that helps “The Flash” be the standout show it is.
“Arrow” has proven to be the perfect starting place for DC’s television universe. Not only did it pair with the CW (which has become a stable and loving outlet for comics), but it perfectly mirrors “Batman Begins” by fleshing out The Arrow’s origin story.
ABC Family’s “The Middleman” has become a bit of a cult series, even despite its short life span. “The Middleman” gets points for being one of the truest comic adaptations out there and for its witty vibe. This was the comic series made for fans of “30 Rock” and “Men in Black” — and thus unsurprisingly it didn’t really suit the ABC Family audience.
“iZombie” flips the zombie story around and focuses on what its like to BE a zombie instead of what its like to run from one. The often amusing show can be compared to the cult classic “Veronica Mars” (with the addition of a little more blood, of course).
“The Tick” lasted a grand total of eight episodes, which is a real shame. The show was loved by critics for its smart humor, but ultimately it couldn’t stand up to the competitive time slot that FOX launched it in.
“Smallville” turned the clock so far back on Superman that it actually showed the origin story of Clark Kent more than the origin story of Superman. It developed Kent’s friendship with Lex Luthor just enough to let it slowly unravel, deliciously hinting at what was to come for the pair. “Smallville” remains the former WB network's highest rated show ever.
“Batman” couldn’t be more different from Christopher Nolan’s modern day interpretation. The ‘60s show celebrated the campy side of superheroes and the cheesy, colorful side of comic books. To this day, some fans stay ever faithful to this portrayal of “Batman” in his goofiest light, with all 120 episodes up for a rewatch at any time.
Adapted from “Hellblazer,” “Constantine” was NBC’s attempt to keep up in the comic book world. After only one season, NBC sadly quit the game and cancelled the show. “Constantine” followed an exorcist/detective on the hunt for the supernatural, all the while contending with his own past sins. The cancellation of this one hurt particularly hard.
“Tales From the Crypt” boasts an impressive 7 season run on HBO. The show was a horror anthology series with a “Twilight Zone” nature to it. It even managed to lure in several big name actors and directors to work on the show, including Tom Hanks, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Brad Pitt and director Robert Zemeckis.
“The Incredible Hulk” paved the way for the Marvel phenomenon that the Hulk is now. The role made both Bill Bixby and bodybuilder Loui Ferrigno stars and was the first template of what the Hulk should really be. Edward Norton’s later performance for the movie version was very much influenced by this television series.
The 1990-91 version of “The Flash” starring John Wesley was far less faithful to the comic than today’s Grant Gustin version is. The show was very much a response to the success of Tim Burton’s “Batman” and therefore had the budget to put out what was (at that time) very impressive special effects. Although the show got cancelled prematurely, John Wesley lives on in “The Flash” world by playing Barry Allen’s father on The CW reboot.
“Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman” could make this list with its opening theme alone. The catchy song only adds to the nostalgia that fans feel for this show. Each of the leads had their own strengths, with Dean Cain being endlessly likable, and Teri Hatcher delivering a spirited and much loved Lois Lane. Not to mention that John Shea stands out as one of the strongest Lex Luthors we’ve seen thus far.
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