40 Best Science Fiction TV Shows of All Time

From superhero shows and space operas to creepy anthology series, the greatest small-screen sci-fi of all time

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20. 'Babylon 5' (1994-1998)

Imagine a five-mile-long space station that doubled as a sort of intergalactic U.N., in which humans and aliens have a neutral ground in which to work out trade relations, solve cosmic tiffs and hopefully avoid the sort of warfare that almost destroyed the universe in the only-slightly-distant future. Having done time in the writers' room of the 1980s Twilight Zone update, creator J. Michael Straczynski was no stranger to the genre's metaphorical possibilities. But this show became a fan-favorite because it wasn't content to just use tales of outer-space diplomacy as a cover for ideological beard-stroking — this was unabashed hard sci-fi, full of its own self-contained mythology and blessed with a kick-ass make-up department. DF

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