Dear Crabby, What is the Greatest TV Show of All Time?

Dear Crabby,

For 10 years, you couldn’t tear me away from the television when the show “Friends” was on. Recently, I watched the reunion show and was surprised to learn how many people watched it during its run and now are discovering it in syndication. So, that got me wondering if it’s one of the greatest TV shows of all time. What do you think?


Em B. See

Dear Em B. See,

Well, if you asked Mrs. Crabby what the greatest TV show of all time is, she’d probably say anything on the Hallmark Channel – ha! So, I guess it’s a good thing you are asking me and not her.

Of course, what you’re asking is highly subjective. It’s like being asked to pick which kid is your favorite. The answer will vary depending on who you ask. Was “Friends” a great TV show? Eh. It really wasn’t my cup of java. All that sitting around and drinking overpriced coffee while being touchy-feely all the time. I always wondered how Ross, Rachel, Monica, Chandler, Joey, and Phoebe could afford their carefree lifestyle while living in the heart of New York City. But, as you say, the show ran for 10 years, so clearly lots of people thought it was great. In fact, its series finale was watched by over 52 million American viewers and became the most-watched television episode of the 2000s. 

Dear Crabby sits infront of his laptop
Dear Crabby Gives Advice

If you ask Google, ‘What are the Top 10 Greatest TV Shows of All Time?’ you’ll get a bunch of shows that I’ve never heard of before filled with zombies, space fighters, drug dealers, mobsters, and motorcycle gangs. Is this what passes for entertainment these days? Yeesh. At least “The Twilight Zone” had a ‘moral of the story’ at the end of every episode. So, since you asked for MY opinion, I’m going to tell you the three shows I think are the greatest of all time. Are you ready?

#3 – “All in the Family”

Man. That Archie Bunker was a cankerous son-of-a-gun after my own heart. He didn’t mix his words. His friends and family knew exactly where they stood with him and how he felt about pretty much every topic under the sun. I get the feeling old Archie and I would have been drinking buddies in real life.

#2 – “Bonanza”

How this show wasn’t on any of the lists I looked at is beyond me. It’s a Western for crying out loud. What could be more American than that? And it ran for 14 seasons. Clearly, people liked what they saw. Personally, I liked Lorne Greene who played the dad ‘Ben Cartwright.’ His sons respected and listened to him. I always wondered what that was like.

And my pick for the #1 Greatest TV Show of All Time is…M*A*S*H!”

Oh, the hijinks those rascally doctors ‘Hawkeye’ Pierce, Trapper John McIntyre, and then B.J. Hunnicutt got into. War is hell, but they sure found a way to make vodka martinis out of lemons. This show ran for 11 seasons and its final episode, “Goodbye, Farewell, and Amen” was the most-watched television broadcast in American history for 27 years straight! And it remains the most-watched finale of any television series and the most-watched episode. Take that Tony Soprano!

If you disagree with my choices, that’s fine. But if you want to watch some quality programming, I suggest you check out where you can find the shows I mentioned on one of those fancy streaming services that are all the rage these days. Or, for a price, I’ll loan you my VHS tapes.

Happy Viewing!

Dear Crabby

Stuck in a rut? Need some biased advice from a crabby old baby-boomer? Then email me your question at You can also head on over to my Facebook page and tell me how wonderful I am.

About Dear Crabby

Stuck in a rut? Need some biased advice from a crabby old baby-boomer? Read regularly by thousands and loved by some, Dear Crabby answers questions weekly to life's challenges. Send him a note at


  1. Pat Botkin says

    Great selections!

Speak Your Mind