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

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96. 'Gunsmoke'

1955-75
Westerns were a staple of television's first half-century, with enduring sagebrush sagas from the Cartwrights of Bonanza to the Barkleys of The Big Valley. This Western lasted longer than any other drama of the pre-Law & Order era – 20 seasons – with James Arness as Marshal Matt Dillon, pure frontier gravitas in a white hat. 

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