In looking at the list of most watched Series Finales a few weeks ago (available here), I had a few comments. Since I have a website and no friends who seemingly have in interest in Alf or Sister, Sister, I’ve decided to look at the list and comment on a few of the actual shows I watched starting from the bottom.
#143 (last place!!!) – WCW Nitro – By 2001, the WCW was incredibly unwatchable. From 1997-2000, though, I didn’t miss many episodes. There were a handful of guys – Goldberg, Chris Jericho, Booker T, Raven, Juventud Guerrera, Ray Mysterio Jr, Konnan, Sting, Ernest “The Cat” Miller, Eddie Guerrero, Chavo Guerrero, Hollywood Hogan, Big Poppa Pump and many more – that I might never have been introduced to if it weren’t for the WCW. I’m still 5% saddened that the WCW doesn’t exist although TNA (which I don’t watch) seems to be playing every card the WCW played from 1996-1999.
#141 – Prison Break – Fantasic first season. Very mediocore second season. Didn’t even make it through 3 episodes of the third season. Of course, how many times can a person break out of prison?
#128 – Buffy the Vampire Slayer – True story… I watched six full seasons of Buffy. I got to disc 3 (out of 4) of the last season and just didn’t care. I’ve never bothered watching the last handful of episodes.
#122 – Step By Step – I have no idea how this show ended, but I watched enough episodes to mention that this is one of the best tv shows that never showed up on syndication.
#120 – Family Matters – A great show when I was a kid, it got horrible by the end (especially with the Stephon Urkel storylines). That being said, I still would watch an episode if it was on tv.
#115 – The OC – Much like Prison Break, I loved the first season but just great tired of it by the middle of the 2nd.
#113 – Alias – Common theme. Great first season. Ridiculous storylines that got more ridiculous. Didn’t watch by the end.
#96 – 24 – It’s really sad that finale to a truly great show is behind Becker, Judging Amy, and Kate & Allie.
#86 – Boy Meets World – You knew this one was coming. Word on the street is the rest of the seasons are coming out on dvd soon.
#84 – The West Wing – The last few seasons didn’t capture the greatness of the first few, but the last episode was really good.
#78 – Sex and the City – Surprisingly high for a premium cable show that only chicks (claimed) to watch.
#66 – The Sopranos – Very high very a premium cable show even though a lot of people hated the ending (I didn’t have a problem)
#55 – Lost – I’ve never seen this show. That is all.
#54 – Mr Belvedere – Just wanted to mention that the media made a huge fuss over Lost, but Mr. Belvedere was watched by more people.
#43 – ER – This one should’ve been higher, but the show was on the air probably 5 years too long (and it didn’t have Clooney or any of the early season stars)
#39 – Major Dad – Seriously?!? 17.9 million people answered the question “what did you do last night” by watching Major Dad on a day in April of 1993?
#30 – Fresh Prince of Bel-Air – This is one of those shows I watched pretty religiously, but I have no idea how the series ended.
#27 = The Wonder Years – Worst ending to a series ever? He doesn’t even wind up with Winnie bleeping Cooper!
#25 –ALF – A show about an alien puppet who wants to eat cats. Sadly, the show didn’t really get a finale as NBC ended the show on a “To Be Continued” episode and… well, never continued it.
#22 – MacGyver – After MacGruber made a measly $4.5 million in opening box office, it’s easy to say MacGyver reigns supreme over MacGruber. Nearly 50x as many people watched the last episode of MacGyver than went to the opening weekend of MacGruber.
#20 – Full House – I was trying to remember if this was the episode where Michelle fell off a horse. Wikipedia confirmed it to be true. What a crazy cast, in retrospect. Jodie Sweetin got hooked on meth. Candace Cameron married a Russian hockey player. Bob Saget wound up being the filthiest comic possibly ever. John Stamos married a supermodel. Lori Laughlin became a mom on the new 90210. Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen haven’t eaten a sandwich since the show went off the road. Finally, Dave Coulier went from having two shows (Full House and America’s Funniest People) to none for the past 15 years. For the record, I’m still rooting for a Dave Coulier comeback.
#10 – Home Improvement – I think the kids got a little old for this show, but having watched a few re-runs recently, it’s still a pretty good show. Tim Allen was a fantastic guy to base a sitcom around.
#7 – The Cosby Show – Arguably the best family sitcom ever? This show was groundbreaking at the time. It was the first time I ever remember seeing an affluent black family on tv. Sadly, we haven’t seen many of them since.
#6 – The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson – This is amazing. At 10:30 (central) time, they pulled in 50 million viewers. Too bad the next guy kind stunk for the next 18+ years.
#5 – Magnum, PI – Two guys I seem to forget were huge at one time – Burt Reynolds and Tom Selleck.
#4 – Friends – Good show with a deservingly big following. There hasn’t been a “real show” (excluding reality tv) close to as big as this since it went off the air 6 years ago (seems like it’s been more than that!)
#3 – Seinfeld – People rag on the last episode, but I may be the only guy that goes to my grave thinking it was a good episode. As crazy as this seems, the last episode of Seinfeld drew in 50% more viewers than the last episode of Friends.
#2 – Cheers – This feels like “the” show of my parents generation just like Seinfeld feels like “the” show of my generation.
#1 – M*A*S*H – Everyone knows this is number one. For younger viewers who didn’t watch it, check it out on dvd. You can find the full seasons for around $10 per season. It’s a good combination of serious drama with slapstick humor.