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Best SF TV Shows

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Initial post: 3 Jun 2011 13:46:38 BDT
kosh55 says:
OK, i know all have done this before, but this is my first time, so bear with me. In order:

1. Babylon 5
I used to prefer Trek so much more, but each time i see B5 it gets better with each viewing. It has so much more depth than Trek. So, now it's number 1 !!

2. Star Trek - Next Generation
Nuff said.

3. Star Trek - TOS
The revamped DVD's were amazing, added so much to the episodes.

4. Star Trek - Voyager
Good but when Seven joined the show, WOW !
Scorpion was olne of best Trek episodes of all.

5. Star Trek - Enterprise
Watched for first time on DVD recently. Brill ! Loved the third series with continuing stories and the multi-part episoed of the fourth series. If only they had continued.

6. Stargate Atlantis
Rodney gets Atlantis above SG-1.

7. Stargare SG-1
Hated the film so never watched at first. So came late to Stargate, just got the SG-1 complete series as it was cheap and wow, what i had missed.

8. Andromeda
Got the complete DVD set a few months ago and seen it all. Good but not great, at least for me. Also, i got an Aussie import DVD, and the sound was awful, often difficult to hear the dialogue, which didn't help.

9. Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Just a great fun show.

10. Farscape
Take the 20 best episodes and it is na great sereies. Loved the best of it but the average episode was awful, i struggled to get through some at all.

11. Star Trek - DS9
If it wasn't Trek i probably would not watch it much at all. So much the unloved cousin of Trek. Some great episodes of course but most were just pretty dull.

12. Roswell
Just watching it on DVD now, finished first series and quite enjoying it. Better than i expected.

13. Blakes 7
If only the effects and some acting were better, how good would it have been?

14. Angel
Not Buffy but not bad.

15. Battlestar Gallactica (2003)
I know some people just loved this but i was very disappointed. Hated all scenes with Baltar and Number 6, got so fed up with them. Often not really SF.

16. Firefly
Never quite understood why so many loved it. Good show but too much of a western for me.

17. X-Files
Loved it at first but last time I watched, getting very dated.

18. Stargate Universe
Oh dear .....

Series on DVD still waiting to watch for the first time:
Earth 2
Earth Final Conflict
Mutant X
Space Above and Beyond

Any SF shows I have missed altogether ???

So, that is my view of the Best SF TV. I have not doubt there is much disagreement, but that is what makes it all interesting.


Posted on 4 Jun 2011 00:12:27 BDT
Anita says:
Hi, Kosh,
is it Kosh as Kosh of Vorlon?
I'd vote for Babylon 5 too.
If you include X Files, maybe you should also include Millenium?
What about Lost? Or Fringe?
I'm not so sure if 4400 is valid as science fiction. On the other hand - Buffy?..

In reply to an earlier post on 4 Jun 2011 10:59:53 BDT
Trekkie says:
What about Alien Nation?

Posted on 4 Jun 2011 15:30:16 BDT
kosh55 says:
Hi Anita,
Thanks for your response. Yes, kosh comes from Ambassador Kosh from B5 - my fave character after Spoch !
Often thought of Millenium, i have seen a few episodes but not too impressed with what i have seen. So it will be a "maybe" for the future.
I watched the first 5 or 6 Lost episodes and kept waiting for something to happen ... but it never did. I also hear from those that watched it all, that it never told everything. I am not a fan of JJ Abrahms. I find Fringe just too similar to X-Files, some episodes could easily be swapped between series. But i have only seen the first 2 series of Fringe so maybe the third (and soon, fourth) will be better.
I do think anything involving aliens is SF in some way. And Buffy is a super hero with super powers, so i feel she just squeezes in to SF.

It can be difficult to say exactly what is SF. I tend to be lenient as there are so few SF shows left now to choose from, so i take what i can get!


Posted on 6 Jun 2011 14:31:22 BDT
DarrenHF says:
These are all the big, well known ones. Assuming that you've allowed fantasy and horror in there (ANGEL and BUFFY) then you need to look at some of the following

Sapphire and Steel: The Complete Series (Repackaged) [2008] [DVD]
The Prisoner [DVD]
The Walking Dead - Season 1 [DVD]
Being Human - Complete Series 1-3 Box Set [DVD]
Thunderbirds Complete Series Digistack--9-Disc Box Set [DVD]

and that's just off the top of my head.

Also - where is DOCTOR WHO?

The Sci Fi Freak's Guide To The Televisual Galaxy - All The Shows

Posted on 6 Jun 2011 18:39:38 BDT
Kosh, you should be able to guess my favourite show from my name!

That's right Babylon 5!

I have to admit I'm surprised by some of your choices and comments. Being a Babylon 5 fan I would have expected you to appreciate the quality writing in Farscape. I admit some of the early episodes were a little iffy but on the whole Farscape is a top science-fiction series, with only Babylon 5 bettering it in my opinion.

1. Babylon 5

2. Farscape

3. Space above and beyond

4. Buffy the Vampire slayer

5. Firefly

My other favourite sci-fi/fantasy series in no particular order...

Stargate SG 1
Charlie Jade
The Lost Room
Blade the series
The Sarah Connor Chronicles
The X Files
Battlestar Galactica (up to the end of the second series. I don't think much of it after that point).

Star Trek Deep Space nine
First Wave
Total recall 2070
Dark Angel
American Gothic
The dead zone
John Doe
Ghost In The Shell stand-alone complex (anime)
Night Stalker
Dune and Children of Dune mini-series
Dark skies

plus plenty of others I can't recall now. One series I never saw a lot of that I want to see is Lexx

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Jun 2011 12:00:34 BDT
kosh55 says:
Thanks Darren, good suggestions. I had forgotten Sapphire and Steel. I watched it when it on but not since. A good thought. I have the Prisoner (is it reallt SF?) now on Blu-ray, getting my first HD TV today, as it happens, in a couple of hours! Not seen The Walking Dead but will certainly check it out now. I know it's on one of the channels i have. Same as Being Human, when that is next on. I have Thuderbirds on DVD, i guess that is SF. Umm, Doctor Who, good point. I do like the new series but i just don't "love it" like others do. Maybe i am missing something.

Anyway, that gfives me more to watch, so thanks for that.

C heers,

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Jun 2011 12:08:10 BDT
kosh55 says:
Thanks Valen, many good ideas.

Not sure why i could not really get into Farscape, as i know many others have, like yourself. Maybe partly as Chrihton was a scientist but often acted otherwise. I think of a scientist being like Spock, maybe that is why. Anyway, i still enjoyed the show.

I shall look forward to seeing Space Above and Beyond next, when i finish watching "Earth Final Conflict" - not very impressed so far with this one.

Quite a few you mention i have not heard of, so i will get onto and then Amazon and see if they are available. Many thanks for all suggestions.

If only there were more B5 though !!


Posted on 8 Jun 2011 13:25:01 BDT
Soze says:
1. Dr Who

Primarily for the 60`s and 70`s stuff although the new series is, for the most part, hugely entertaining. I love how diverse the show has been over the years, the very concept is open to such a vast array of stories and ideas. It constantly re-invents itself for a whole new generation.

2. Babylon 5

I was completely hooked by this on first transmission although it has dated somewhat. I can look past some ropey dialogue and acting as the main story is so compelling with such great characters. Londo and G`Kar are possibly my 2 favourite creations in TV history.

3. Battlestar Galactica (new)

Easily the best s/f show of recent years, a thought provoking, intelligent drama that regularly shocked and excited me. Such a far cry from the camp original ( which in itself was good fun ).

4. Blake's 7

I don't care about the dodgy's the scripts and characters that keep me coming back. The main core of the show were fantastic were to watch...Avon, Villa, Blake...with lots of witty dialogue.

5. The Prisoner

An absolutely barmy, yet brilliant show. The first time I watched it I was completely enthralled, each episode would set my brain racing for the next 24 hours! One of the greatest TV shows of the 21st century.

6. The Twilight Zone

I haven't seen this in some years but intend to get hold of some of the recent blu-ray releases. Much of what is in this show set the groundwork for many sf shows that were to follow, classic stuff.

7. Star Trek (original)

I'm not as drawn to the Trek universe as I am others ( and the spin offs are, to a man, appalling bores ). But I have to acknowledge the original, Kirk, Spock and McCoy are iconic characters and the first season in particular was packed with some great stories.

8. Firefly

Hard to rate a show that only ever got half a series...this could have been an all time classic if it were allowed to unfold as it should have. It's the characters that make this programme such a winner, the plots themselves are fairly well worn although there's tantalising stuff going on in the background. If only we could have seen it all pan out.

9. The X-Files

The first 4 series or so of this were gripping...but it sadly disappeared up it's own arse afterwards. It soon became apparent that the writers had no more idea what was going on than the viewers did!

10. Lost in Space

Just because it was such utterly daft, silly fun!

Posted on 8 Jun 2011 16:52:02 BDT
DarrenHF says:
@ Valen's Shadow

The Lost Room [DVD][2006]! How could I have forgotten that? One of the truly original mini series of recent times with a smart central idea, great performances and some genuinely creepy bits. If only there were more like it.

Posted on 25 Jul 2011 23:42:52 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 Jul 2011 23:48:09 BDT
Dont forget some of the older ones like for example U.F.O. as well as land of the giants and space precinct

Posted on 28 Jul 2011 03:29:38 BDT
The Shadow says:
#1 DOCTOR WHO is easily the best
#2 THE AVENGERS comes a close second, especially the Macnee/Rigg episodes
#3 STAR TREK DEEP SPACE 9 was probably the best incarnation of Trek

Posted on 31 Jul 2011 19:36:28 BDT
Mondo Ray says:
Still waiting for comments on Caprica....

Posted on 31 Jul 2011 22:18:55 BDT
Last edited by the author on 31 Jul 2011 22:19:40 BDT
S. J. M says:
No love for Red Dwarf?
Granted its a sitcom, but its set in Space with holograms, an android and a creature evolved from a cat! And its probably the funniest SciFi Sitcom (S1-6 anyway)

Posted on 1 Aug 2011 17:50:12 BDT
Last edited by the author on 1 Aug 2011 17:51:07 BDT
R. Madican says:
It's got to be the weather forecast... hang on a minute let me explain. Firstly how often is is right? (Fiction obviously) and secondly how much technology is used to guess tomorrows weather, computers that can compute over 1 trillion calculations per second (science bit)
The best bit bit for me is knowing that the show has not been canceled before the plot lines have played out and there are no meandering and meaningless sub plots it's all go.
After that I'd say the clangers or fireball XL5 or Space Patrol or Ulysses 31 or the invaders or the outer limits or fantastic journey or voyage to the bottom of the sea or the six million dollar man or the flip side of dominic hyde... stopping now fingers tired.

In reply to an earlier post on 1 Aug 2011 22:28:45 BDT
DarrenHF says:
RED DWARF - absolutely the proof that science fiction can be funny (and there really isn't a lot of that around).

Posted on 2 Aug 2011 12:49:48 BDT
Mondo Ray says:

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Aug 2011 15:35:45 BDT
R. Madican says:
Sounds like you just eat one

In reply to an earlier post on 25 Aug 2011 17:35:09 BDT
Last edited by the author on 26 Aug 2011 09:06:17 BDT
Jack says:
I'll have a go.

I just couldn't suspend my disbelief for Caprica: there wasn't even a token attempt to make the city-set look like anything other than down-town USA or the culture anything different than standard American. I even saw a Morris Minor in one shot that could have driven in from an episode of Last of the Summer Wine (or maybe it was imported from Clarice Willow's home colony.)

I can pretend to believe in time travel, warp drive, even resurrection but I can't believe in Moggies and Cylons coming off production lines only a few miles apart.

And all the fracking swearing was totally gratuitous.

On the other hand I want to stick up for Stargate Universe. I only watched the odd episode on its first run and didn't really get it. I'm currently watching it on cable at the rate of two shows a day and I'm very impressed by the subtlety and quality of the performances; particularly from Robert Carlyle, Louis Ferreira and Jamil Walker Smith.

I also think that the moral dilemmas of the characters are fairly believable considering the circumstances they're in. In one particular episode the Americans even cast themselves as the bad guys! It was a story about Earth using an ally's Stargate in a risky attempt to dial the Destiny Starship - risky for the ally's planet that is. It's unusual for the heroes of the show to cast themselves in a bad light but it does make for more convincing drama. Good stuff.

Posted on 28 Aug 2011 14:02:00 BDT
If you're going to watch "Space - Above and Beyond" (utter tripe and I can't believe I watched it first time around) then you should watch "Dark Skies" if only for Jeri Ryan before Voyager and Eric Close before all the other things he's been in! Why not try "The Invaders"? And what about "Lexx"? Divinely insane and unashamedly wierd. Also, I must say that I agree with a previous poster - "Farscape" was genius!! Yes there were a few bad episodes, what long-running series doesn't have a few of those, but on the whole it was brilliant. It took me until season 3 to start watching, but then I was hooked. More recently only "Firefly" has matched it. I still can't believe the morons cancelled that! Proof that the lunatics have taken over the asylum and it's only luck that allows anything decent to be shown on TV. Oh, and on that note, you must watch "Cleopatra 2525". There must be sillier things on tv but I can't think of any right now!! But Gina Torres is in it and she's always excellent.

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Aug 2011 14:53:44 BDT
Thor says:
What about the 2moro People?

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Aug 2011 15:10:27 BDT
I loved that at the time!

Posted on 30 Aug 2011 09:39:23 BDT
Dai Kiwi says:
A little known but interesting show was "Space Island One" which ran on Sky in 1998. It was set on a space station in low-earth orbit in the 2030s. Not available on DVD unfortunately. Stephen Baxter wrote at least one of the episodes.

Posted on 30 Aug 2011 21:25:18 BDT
John Carter says:
Dark Angel !

Posted on 4 Sep 2011 05:54:51 BDT
F says:
Yep, I'm a fan. The first season was rather dull in my opinion and many of the episodes appeared to be standard sci-fi storytelling. Something happened in season two and I thought it got much better from there.

I love Lexx. I haven't been able to watch it all, though. I hope I can get hold of it and watch it again sometime.

Space Above and Beyond
I really liked this show. To me it felt kind of 'real', as though it reflected how marines live aboard ship on sea and that style of living was brought to space.

I'm half and half on this one. I really enjoyed the concept and I still get the theme song stuck in my head. There are also moments that still stand out for me, like when one of the characters goes to rescue her husband from his kidnappers.

I thought the first season was excellent. The writers really knew where they wanted to take the plot and the characterisation was spot on. I didn't like the subsequent seasons though. They felt to me as though they lacked focus.

The Prisoner
Loved it.

The X-Files
I really enjoyed the early seasons, and even the kind of silly season (season 6). Things inevitably went downhill after Mulder left - Supersoldiers, anyone?

Battlestar Galactica
I loved it. I enjoy watching a TV series that has ambiguous characters because people in real life are not as simply 'good' or 'bad' as television makes them out to be. The politics also felt kind of real to me too. Billy was one of my favourite characters. I also felt so sorry for Gaeta when his end came.

I didn't like Caprica as much as I wanted to. The plot with the Soldiers of the One became tiresome after a while. Particularly the sister who wanted to keep her membership a secret but seemed to reveal her interests to anyone who asked her.

I've seen no mention of this yet. Has anyone else seen it? It only got one season so I think it's probably easily missed.

Dark Skies
I've heard of this before. I might even have seen a couple of episodes. I'll try to get hold of it because I would like to watch it all the way through now.

The Lost Room
I've never heard of this. Again, I'll get hold of it soon. I like to watch new shows.
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