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Drama TV Shows

The Best Drama TV Shows & Series


Browse our collection of some of the most popular drama series to air during primetime television since 1950.

1987-1991 | FOX
21 Jump Street is an American police procedural crime drama television series that aired on the Fox Network and in first run syndication from 1987, to 1991, with a total of 103 episodes. The series focused on a squad of youthful-looking undercover police officers investigating crimes in high schools, colleges, and other teenage venues.
1990-2000 | FOX
Beverly Hills, 90210 is a drama series that originally aired from 1990 to 2000 on FOX. The show followed the lives of a group of teenagers living in the upscale, star-studded community of Beverly Hills, California and attending the fictitious West Beverly High School and, subsequently, the fictitious California University after graduation.
1978-1991 | CBS
Dallas is a drama that revolves around the Ewings, a wealthy Texas family in the oil and cattle-ranching industries. The series won four Emmy Awards, including a 1980 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series win for Barbara Bel Geddes. Throughout the series, Larry Hagman stars as greedy, scheming oil baron J. R. Ewing. The show also starred stage/screen actress Barbara Bel Geddes as family matriarch Miss Ellie, and movie Western actor Jim Davis in his last role as Ewing patriarch Jock Ewing before his death in 1981.
1989-1993 | ABC
Doogie Howser, M.D. is an comedy-drama starring Neil Patrick Harris as a 16-year-old doctor who also faces the problems of being a normal teenager. Created by Steven Bochco and David E. Kelley, ABC aired the show from 1989 to 1993 for four seasons totaling 97 episodes.
1994-2009 | NBC
ER is a medical drama that aired on NBC from 1994 to 2009 . Created by best-selling author Michael Crichton, the Emmy Award-winning series has completed fourteen seasons as one of television's highest-rated dramas. The doctors and nurses of County's ER confront the daily challenges of a busy urban hospital, including overcrowded waiting rooms, staffing shortages, and the impact of life-and-death decisions. While they teach the next generation of doctors, each must tackle the demands of their personal lives, at times unsuccessfully.
1964-1967 | NBC
Flipper is a drama series that aired on NBC from 1964 to 1967. Flipper, a bottlenose dolphin, is the companion animal of Porter Ricks, Chief Warden at fictional Coral Key Park and Marine Preserve in southern Florida, and his two young sons Sandy and Bud.
2004-2012 | FOX
House is a medical drama that aired on the FOX from 2004 to 2012 about Dr. Gregory House, an unconventional and misanthropic medical genius who heads a team of diagnosticians at the fictional Princeton-Plainsboro Teaching Hospital in New Jersey.
1979-1993 | CBS
Knots Landing is a primetime drama series that aired from 1979 to 1993 on CBS. Set in a fictitious coastal suburb of Los Angeles in California, the show centered on the lives of four married couples living in a cul-de-sac, Seaview Circle. Initially intended to be a Scenes From a Marriage-type drama series, storylines also included rape, murder, kidnapping, assassinations, drug smuggling, corporate intrigue and criminal investigations. By the time of its conclusion, Knots Landing had become one of the longest-running primetime dramas on U.S. television after Gunsmoke and Law & Order, and tied for third place with Bonanza.
1986-1994 | NBC
L.A. Law is legal drama series that ran for eight seasons on NBC from 1986 to 1994 created by Steven Bochco and Terry Louise Fisher. This critically acclaimed ensemble drama reflected the social and cultural ideologies of the 1980s and early 1990s as many of the cases featured on the show dealt with hot-topic issues of the day. The series often also reflected tensions between the wealthy senior lawyers and their less well-paid junior staff.
1954-1973 | CBS
Lassie is a drama series that follows the adventures of a female Rough Collie named Lassie and her companions, human and animal. The show was the creation of producer Robert Maxwell and animal trainer Rudd Weatherwax and aired from 1954 to 1973. One of the longest running dramatic series on television, the show chalked up seventeen seasons on CBS before entering first-run syndication for its final two seasons. Initially filmed in black and white, the show transitioned to color during 1965.
1969-1976 | ABC
Marcus Welby, M.D. is a medical drama series that aired on ABC from 1969 to 1976 that starred Robert Young as family practitioner, Marcus Welby, whose thoroughness and dedication involved him in the lives of all sorts of patients.
1989-1993 | NBC
Quantum Leap is a drama series that aired on NBC from 1989 to 1993 that starred Scott Bakula as Dr. Sam Beckett, a physicist from six years in the future who becomes lost in time following a time travel experiment, temporarily taking the places of other people to "put right what once went wrong".
1982-1988 | NBC
St. Elsewhere is a medical drama series that ran on NBC 1982 to 1988 set at fictional St. Eligius, a decaying urban teaching hospital in Boston's South End neighborhood. The show starred Ed Flanders, Norman Lloyd and William Daniels all as teaching doctors, who gave interns a promising future in making critical decisions.
1972-1981 | CBS
The Waltons is a period drama series that aired on CBS from 1972 to 1981 that is based on the book Spencer's Mountain and a 1963 film of the same name. The show is centered on a family in a rural Virginia community during the Great Depression and World War II.
1988-1993 | ABC
The Wonder Years was a hit comedy-drama series that aired on ABC from 1988 until 1993 that starred Fred Savage as Kevin Arnold, a boy facing rites of passage on his way to adulthood .

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