Top 10 TV series of the decade

Fri Nov 27, 2009 6:56pm EST
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By Barry Garron

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Every decade has its landmark TV shows, and there will or should never be complete agreement on which 10 series belong at the top of the list.

For purposes of this list, a TV show is eligible only if it premiered in or after 1999. In addition, TV shows were judged on their artistic merit and overall contribution to the medium, not on their ratings or profit margins.


* ABC, 2009-present

It's a little risky to pick a new show as one of the best of the decade, even after seeing about a dozen episodes. In the case of "Modern Family," the risk is minimized by the track record of its creators, Steven Levitan and Christopher Lloyd. At a time when most new shows are just finding themselves, this one has been so consistently funny, smartly produced and crisply written that it has all the earmarks of a classic in the making.


* ABC, 2004-present

Part adventure, part mystery and part sci-fi, "Lost" defies convenient characterization. Supposedly conceived as a blend of "Lord of the Flies," "Survivor," "Gilligan's Island" and "Cast Away," the series developed a unique mythology and an unconventional rhythm that mixed stories of the present with those from the past and future. Creators Jeffrey Lieber, J.J. Abrams and Damon Lindelof created one of TV's biggest casts, then made each character utterly fascinating.   Continued...

<p>James Gandolfini (C) and the cast of "The Sopranos" accept the Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series award at the 14th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards in Los Angeles in this January 27, 2008 file photo. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok</p>