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100 Greatest TV Shows of All Time

From time-capsule sitcoms to cutting-edge Peak-TV dramas — the definitive ranking of the game-changing small-screen classics

57. 'Fawlty Towers'

1975-79
John Cleese based this most horrible of hotel owners on a resort where the Monty Python gang once stayed. Basil Fawlty is the nastiest piece of work Cleese has ever played – one of his most famous scenes features him snarling at a nun. But nobody infuriates him like his customers, especially the one inconsiderate enough to die in his room. "It does actually say 'hotel' outside, you know. Perhaps I should be more specific: 'Hotel for people who have a better than 50 percent chance of making it through the night.'" 

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