Top Five Post-Apocalyptic TV Series

Chris Van Deelen

Okay, I have decided to continue with the Post-Apocalyptic theme for this week and next week. This week I will take a look at my top five favorite Television shows that have an apocalyptic theme behind them.

When it comes right down to it, most of these shows have fought one another for my top position, as when each aired (with the exception of Walking Dead and The 100), they remained my favorite shows to watch, until their ultimate demise.

These shows run the entire gamut. We have biological plague, zombies, loss of electricity and of course nuclear war.

You must remember these are shows that I have personally watched. I’m sure there are others that I have missed, or not even had a chance to view yet.  I can add at least two series that came out in the 70’s, of which I have only seen one. Planet of the Apes TV series and Logan’s Run. Both are canon post-apocalypse, but did not make my cut.

I really wanted to add ‘The Sarah Conner Chronicles’ as well but last time I mentioned ‘The Terminator’ as one of my top five post-apocalyptic movies, it garnered argument that it really didn’t belong.

For the record, I think it does. =)

  1. The 100I was a bad boy and pirated the first episode when I heard of this show. I watched it and it caught my interest, but decided I would wait until the first season was available on DVD before I started to watch it. Finally just over a week ago my wife and I started the series, and we finished the first season in several days of binge watching. If you are not familiar with it, the story is simple. The Ark, a station built around thirteen other space stations, is all that is left of humanity after a global thermonuclear holocaust. The problem is the Ark is dying and can only sustain life for a few more months. A radical decision is made to send down 100 young convicts, who were to be put to death anyway, to Earth. The hope is the Earth will finally be habitable once again, although 97 years has passed.  I won’t spoil it for anyone, but I am seriously hooked on this series! At least it’s been renewed for a 3rd season.
  2. RevolutionAt first I was skeptical, as the story behind this series sounded pretty much like a direct rip-off of S.M. Sterlings Emberverse series of novels. Imagine a world in which all electricity has ceased to exist. Nothing that required power functions any longer. No one seems to know why and in the aftermath of the fall, new governments have arisen from the Ashes of the old. As one might expect, it is a brutal day-to-day battle for survival, and yet something is amiss. Someone knows exactly what happened and may just be able to turn the power back on. It’s a real shame this show only lasted for two seasons, as I loved it!
  3. Walking Dead - What list would not be complete without this incredibly violet and gory series? I’m sure it was an experiment, when the first season was only 6 episodes long, to see how the public would react. Well, the public ‘ahem’ ate it up like the ravenous zombies portrayed. The story is about survival in the most horrific plague one could imagine. What will the survivors do, how far will they fall just to keep breathing and one step ahead of becoming a meal themselves? Based on the long running comic by the same name, it deviates quite a bit from the actual comics. Characters that did not exist in the comic are in the show, people die who should have survived, and the reverse is true as well. Still going strong after 5 seasons and here’s hoping for many more.
  4. JerichoCut well short before it’s time, this series was based in a small rural town in the aftermath of a nuclear attack. 24 American cities were destroyed by nuclear weapons, but as the survivors in this small town discover soon enough, it was not an act of war by another country. Lots of mystery and intrigue and really relatable and likeable characters. When it was canceled after a single season, the fans went berserk and started a ‘nuts’ campaign in order to at the least get the show renewed enough to see the conclusion to the cliffhanger. I was one of those people who participated and we were rewarded with a short 7 episode season which wrapped things up. It lived on as an additional two seasons in comics.
  5. JeremiahA series in which a plague wipes out all the adults, anyone who had hit puberty, but left the kids alone. The main story revolves around the character Jerimiah, who is searching for a place named Valhalla, a place mentioned by his father. Since all the adults are gone, the world is a completely different place now, with the children having grown and created new cultures and ways to govern. Once again a series that had real potential, but simply did not seem to strike the right chords among the public.