Spabbit’s Sci-Fi Shows, ranked.

Continuing the series of articles for ranked TV, comes the Sci-Fi Shows, ranked. This covers what are, strictly in my opinion, the best Sci-Fi shows I’ve personally seen. I’m no professional critic, I just like what I like – Just take a show for what it is, with its limits, and just bloody well enjoy it :). The list has been reduced down to the top 24 for a mention, out of the 160 which started!

As was stated in the other articles, the really good Sci-Fi always has a simple idea at the core, and is allowed to grow in to something quote horrific, and like a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster will leave you with one hell of a hangover thought 🙂

Sci-Fi series don’t always hammer home a particular point, some of them may be classed as comedy, or space-opera, but none the less, they’ve Sci-Fi at heart, all be it they’re set in space or in the future!

Hopefully, if you’re looking for something different to watch in the Sci-Fi genre, this article will give you some ideas!

1: Fringe – This show is a memory for some, and a gem waiting to be discovered for others – I was fortunate enough not to have watched Fringe when it was first on – only discovering it on recommendation from a friend – that means I was able to binge-watch this piece of solid gold awesome! The three main actors, Anna Torv, Joshua Jackson, and John Noble really branded themselves onto this show making the oh so subtle ideas come alive on the screen. Lessons of Fringe: All that glitters isn’t Amber. Watch today – you won’t be disappointed.

Fringe | September 9, 2008 (United States) Summary: An F.B.I. agent is forced to work with an institutionalized scientist and his son in order to rationalize a brewing storm of unexplained phenomena.
Countries: United States, CanadaLanguages: English

2: The Expanse – Syfy did good with The Expanse, apart from the discontinuation! What’s unusual about this show is that it’s stunning Sci-Fi which (mainly) sticks to the known principles of physics – for example, it doesn’t allow for a full-stop in space without consequences, and obeys the principles of ballistic projectiles and gravity. The show reminds me of many a Sci-Fi (trash?) novel, concerning the potential on-world, and off-world war scenarios – this time it’s so polished, you’d think it was actually Canadian Sci-Fi! In a nutshell The Expanse is a sterling example of A-Grade Sci-Fi in the modern age, and a crying shame it was cancelled. I’m hopeful of a revival from Amazon, but if it is coming, it’s damn well taking its sweet time!

The Expanse | November 23, 2015 (United States) Summary: In the 24th century, a group of humans untangle a vast plot which threatens the Solar System's fragile state of detente.
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English

3: Andromeda – Shiny sexy Sci-Fi of the highest standard. This show has been ripped apart, but to be honest – those people can go do one. Andromeda is an epic scale Sci-Fi space show of the highest order. No it doesn’t pay much attention to real-life, but that’s the Fiction element in Sci-Fi for you 🙂 I kinda like the way it has references to the old naval ranks and morality whilst set in a universe which is just amazing. Love the elements of the story line where the up-tight captain has to rely on the sexy-roguish Beka Valentine, played by Lisa Ryder. Do you follow The Way?

Andromeda | October 2, 2000 (United States) Summary: Captain Dylan Hunt and the crew of the Andromeda Ascendant set out on a mission to rebuild the Systems Commonwealth 300 years after its fall.
Countries: Canada, United StatesLanguages: English

4: Farscape – Sci-Fi with Leather – extremely sexy and polished leather modelled by Claudia Black, oh and that smile – this made a younger me have a head-rush of love for this show! Wow, what a different universe from any other shows out there – biological ships, baddies who look insane, a floating alien Sci-Fi version of Lovejoy (You can tell my age from this!). What more do you want from a Sci-Fi show?! 🙂

Farscape | March 19, 1999 (United States) Summary: Thrown into a distant part of the universe, an Earth astronaut finds himself part of a fugitive alien starship crew.
Countries: Australia, United StatesLanguages: English

5: StarGate-SG1 is in fifth place – This show (technically the movie – but that was crap compared to the series) started an amazing universe with an epic scale. 214 Episodes and a couple of specials makes this the longest running Sci-Fi show out there – when coupled with Atlantis and Universe it make this one of the biggest hitters of all Sci-Fi series. It lasted this many episodes for a reason – Stargate could cover almost any scenario it wanted to, the premise of the show allowed it to branch on-world, off-world, and everything in-between as it wished. I’ve very good memories of this show, and the escapism it provided. Even though (at the moment) it’s pretty dead in the water, hope lives on that another franchise instalment will bring this universe (no pun intended) back to life!

Stargate SG-1 | July 27, 1997 (United States) Summary: A secret military team, SG-1, is formed to explore other planets through the recently discovered Stargates.
Countries: United States, CanadaLanguages: English

6: Babylon 5The Babylon Project was our last, best hope for peace. But in the year of the Shadow War, it became something greater: our last, best hope – for victory. The year is 2260. The place: Babylon 5. That line kicked off one of the most stunning pieces of Sci-Fi in TV history, quoting the epically stoic Ivanova “No boom today. Boom tomorrow. There’s always a boom tomorrow” – B5 went BOOM in the Sci-Fi world, everything was perfect, the premise, the universe, the history – this show had it all, aliens, aggressive and cool looking ships, jump-gates, crime, treason – sexy Sci-Fi of the highest order. Few story-arcs in any Sci-Fi universe can ever hope to hold a candle to this masterpiece!

Babylon 5 | February 22, 1993 (United States) Summary: In the mid 23rd century, the Earth Alliance space station Babylon 5, located in neutral territory, is a major focal point for political intrigue, racial tensions and various wars over the co... Read all
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English

7: Heroes“Save the cheerleader, save the world” was the phrase of the day. I was undecided for a while if this was Fantasy or Sci-Fi, however I’ve come down on the Sci-Fi side of the fence. This series follows the tales of mutants, but unlike the X-Men, these are more ‘normal’ and largely the tales are more subtle. There was always an overall story arc in Heroes, but it was (as is typical of the series) told in a subtle way – the story arc was frequently disjointed taken in small lumps, but was overall beautifully done and is a credit to the writers. Loved this show, and was very excited when a new season came out recently – I feel the new season could have done so much more, and brought life back into the franchise, but sadly it was shit – nice try to bring it back, but no cigar. The original still stands as a beacon of what is possible 🙂

Heroes | September 25, 2006 (United States) Summary: Common people discover that they have super powers. Their lives intertwine as a devastating event must be prevented.
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English, Japanese, Spanish

8: Eureka – Sci-Fi cute, turns evil! Eureka was Sci-Fi lite most of the time, a happy place where tech made lives better, with the odd hiccup! I really enjoyed this – even though there was an overall story arc, it was very much in the background – each episode was OK to watch on its own. The series did surprise me later on with a real turn to the dark-side, turning characters which I’d grown to love into outright monsters – really twisty in places, Eureka is sorely missed!

Eureka | July 18, 2006 (United States) Summary: A U.S. Marshal becomes the sheriff of Eureka, a remote, cozy little Northwestern town where the best minds in the US have secretly been tucked away to build futuristic inventions for the gov... Read all
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English

9: Blake’s 7 – This is the only show I felt actually improved when the title character went missing. When Avon, played by the sadly deceased Paul Darrow, took over the lead role in the show it got 100% better. Don’t get me wrong, it was easy to pick holes in the show, in some places it felt very low budget, but the overall feel of it, from the villians to the heroes and everything in-between was epic. I’m still a big fan of the second ship in the series Scorpio with the on-board computer, Slave – what a ship! ORAC is amazing, they actually wrote a part for a dweeb computer – lol 🙂 ❤ Servalan – so evil!

Blake's 7 | January 2, 1978 (United Kingdom) Summary: A group of convicts and outcasts fight a guerrilla war against the totalitarian Terran Federation from a highly advanced alien spaceship.
Countries: United KingdomLanguages: English

10: Space: Above and Beyond – US Navy in space, kicking arse with Naval Aviators. Brilliant series, but very short lived, and some have said Well before its time. Agree or not, I can see elements of this show in the much bastardised film version of the Robert A. Heinlien book Starship Troopers.

Space: Above and Beyond | September 24, 1995 (United States) Summary: The Earth is embroiled in a desperate war against alien invaders, and this series focuses on one squadron of Marine pilots involved in it.
Countries: United States, AustraliaLanguages: English

Click the “Continue Reading” link for the full list… you’ll be surprised what’s on it 🙂

11: Buck Rogers in the 25th Century – A part of me thinks “Waltons in Space”, but of course I’d be wrong. This was one of the shows which really tried hard to shove moral lessons down your throat… In this show we found out that the future is sexy, shiny, evil, and judgemental, hell even the little round computer people were judgemental. All that aside, it will always have a place in my memories as a well loved Sci-Fi series, just one that happened to have an agenda.

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century | September 20, 1979 (United States) Summary: A 20th-century astronaut emerges out of 500 years of suspended animation into a future time to become Earth's greatest hero.
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English

12: Space: 1999 – Such a cool idea! I wasn’t around for the first run of this awesome show, but watched it on many a re-run – and surprisingly it still holds its own today. Space: 1999 though… well even though it was epic – it falls firmly into the category of Space Opera for me, and the only thing which puts it above Deep Space 9 is the Eagles. None since have devised such basic, ingenious and good looking space vessels, they could almost be real! The only thing better than the Eagles is the music of the show – 70’s incarnate.

Space: 1999 | September 5, 1975 (United States) Summary: The crew of Moonbase Alpha must struggle to survive when a massive explosion throws the Moon from orbit into deep space.
Countries: United KingdomLanguages: English

13: Altered Carbon – Ooh, for me this has a special place on the list – Is this an actual glimpse in to the far flung future? With technology increasing at such a rate, I can almost see this happening (if war and religion don’t stunt growth again!). It’s certainly an interesting idea – backup drives for the humans who can afford ’em, complete with satellite mirrors. BSOD would be a bitch though 😉

Altered Carbon | February 2, 2018 (United States) Summary: Set in a future where consciousness is digitized and stored, a prisoner returns to life in a new body and must solve a mind-bending murder to win his freedom.
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English, Spanish, Arabic, German

14: Killjoys – Bounty hunters in space! Epic story arcs in this sexy Sci-Fi show. I did feel in parts that it concentrated a little too much on the characters’ back stories rather than the actual happenings. Very very good show – I have respect for the people who made this one.

Killjoys | June 19, 2015 (United States) Summary: In the Quad, a planetary system on the brink of a bloody interplanetary class war, a fun loving trio of bounty hunters attempt to remain impartial as they chase deadly warrants.
Countries: CanadaLanguages: English

15: Torchwood – Adult Doctor Who with a sex drive, literally Jack will fuck anything! Loved Torchwood completely – it took the Doctor Who franchise and universe further than would ever have been possible on its own. Should have been continued. RIP Torchwood. Enough said.

Torchwood | October 22, 2006 (United States) Summary: The members of the Torchwood Institute, a secret organization founded by the British Crown, fight to protect the Earth from extraterrestrial and supernatural threats.
Countries: United Kingdom, Canada, United StatesLanguages: English

16: Firefly – No list of Sci-Fi shows is complete without Firefly having a mention. Q: How to reavers clean their spears? A: They run them through the Wash. Too soon? The answer is YES! This should have been picked up for as many seasons as possible! Nothing which hasn’t been said before – cowboys in space with epic style. Are you a Brown Coat?

Firefly | September 20, 2002 (United States) Summary: Five hundred years in the future, a renegade crew aboard a small spacecraft tries to survive as they travel the unknown parts of the galaxy and evade warring factions as well as authority ag... Read all
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English, Mandarin, Cantonese

17: Lexx: The Dark Zone Stories – Wow – so completely at one end of the bell-curve, this show sits on its own! I can’t even begin to describe how completely fucking weird this show it – all I can think is that the writers consumed a fuckton of ‘shrooms before putting fingers to keyboards! That said, it was also one of the most enjoyable Sci-Fi series out there.

Lexx | July 19, 1997 (United States) Summary: A group of disparate fugitives from an interplanetary tyranny find themselves in control of a massively powerful starship.
Countries: Canada, Germany, United Kingdom, United StatesLanguages: English

18: Under The Dome – The Simpsons Movie gets real – real people, real lives, trapped like carrots. Say no more, well done little series.

Under the Dome | June 24, 2013 (United States) Summary: An invisible and mysterious force field descends upon a small actual town of Chester's Mill, Maine, USA, trapping residents inside, cut off from the rest of civilization. The trapped townspe... Read all
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English

19: Warehouse 13 – Sci-Fi Lite at its finest, cute and interesting, it out librarianed The Librarians, and made it fun too!

Warehouse 13 | July 7, 2009 (United States) Summary: Pete and Myka, U.S Secret Service agents, are deployed in South Dakota's Warehouse 13 with a new assignment from an authority above and outside the government.
Countries: United States, CanadaLanguages: English

20: Red Dwarf – BOYS FROM THE DWARF! I watched this one from day one, 15 February 1988 – I mean holy fucking shit, this is one old program at the time of writing (2019) – BUT it’s still going, and with almost the entire original core cast – 21 years and going strong – not many Sci-Fi shows can say the same. Can’t believe the BBC (Useless) didn’t keep this one going. Typically British (correct me if I’m wrong), this show is not well received by many on a global basis, but for the British it’s our sense of humour (and yes, the u in humour is deliberate, and correct) down to a tee. Like all shows it has good and bad seasons, but the boys from the Dwarf always seem to bounce back with the same Smeg-ups as ever. ❤❤❤ the Dwarf!

Red Dwarf | March 29, 1989 (United States) Summary: The adventures of the last human alive and his friends, stranded three million years into deep space on the mining ship Red Dwarf.
Countries: United KingdomLanguages: English, Esperanto

21: Zoo – Portals with Dinosaurs. Sci-Fi Lite Jurassic Park on the move – entertaining watch – crying shame it was cancelled.

Zoo | June 30, 2015 (United States) Summary: A team comes together and searches to find out what's causing a rash of violent animal attacks.
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English

22: Star Trek: Discovery – If you’ve made it this far down the list (Congrats!), you may have been wondering where the hell Star Trek was – it’s here, almost at the bottom. Why? Trek has aged hideously badly (some would no-doubt shoot me for saying such!), but it has. I try to dive in and watch some of the older stuff, TOS, TNG, DS9, Voyager (At least she was sexy-trek and had hair!), and Enterprise, but they all suffer the same problems – samey story lines – morals thrust down your throat – looking back, I’m not surprised that this was often shown on Sundays. It makes me sad to look back on the Trek Universe other than with a fondness, but it is what it is. The most modern edition of the Trek franchise has shown a brief reprieve from the eternal byte-bin, with epic darkness, sexiness and general disregard for the old vomit-inducing-moral-thrust of Treks past. Thumbs up on this Trek – I think it will stand the test of time!

Star Trek: Discovery | September 24, 2017 (United States) Summary: Ten years before Kirk, Spock, and the Enterprise, the USS Discovery discovers new worlds and lifeforms as one Starfleet officer learns to understand all things alien.
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English, Klingon

23: Doctor Who – Again you may be wondering why this is at the arse end of the list… well… the original (before 2005) may hold a special memory and conjure warm fuzzy feelings for some, but not me. Apart from the singular aspect that it was so damn British, it has aged badly, like a lump of mouldy cheese. The 2005 incarnation reached a high with Rose Tyler and BAD WOLF, then it all started to be sucked into the usual vomit-inducing-moral-thrust of the BBC Black-Hole.

The latest incarnation, where the doc has changed sex, and is played by Jodie Whittaker is abysmal – I will point out that is not abysmal because the doc is a woman – I was really looking forwards to it. It’s abysmal because it’s shit. The doc is over 900 years old, and what does she dress like – a fucking tramp – seriously? And what’s with the fucking history lessons – If I wanted a history lesson, I’d go watch the history channel. The next series best bring some genuine entertainment back, or it’ll be floating belly up in the swamp of TV-Despair with Dusty-Bin. BBC- Can’t you give this franchise to someone with morals > 1899, with more of a sense of humour and adventure than a brick?

Doctor Who | March 17, 2006 (United States) Summary: The further adventures in time and space of the alien adventurer known as the Doctor and their companions from planet Earth.
Countries: United Kingdom, United StatesLanguages: English

24: Rick & Morty – Pickle-Rick! This is last on my list, but definitely not least, the reason it’s in last place is because it’s animated. But don’t let that distract you from this oasis of awesome in the desert of shit. Go have some rum, and put your feet up for a few great hours of entertainment. 3 Seasons in and another 70 episodes have been ordered… Fuck YES!

Rick and Morty | December 2, 2013 (United States) Summary: An animated series that follows the exploits of a super scientist and his not-so-bright grandson.
Countries: United StatesLanguages: English