Game of Thrones series finale s8ep6 (Courtesy of HBO)
(Photo by HBO)

FALL 2019 TV SURVEY: 20 TV Shows That Defined the 2010s

For Rotten Tomatoes’ annual Fall TV Survey, we asked thousands of our users what they’re most looking forward to in the coming TV season and to reflect on the best shows from seasons past.

We’re looking at TV series that were so iconic in their era that they essentially defined the decade in which they aired the majority of their seasons. (If a show aired half its seasons in one decade and the other half in another, we tended to count it toward the earlier decade.) So we asked our survey respondents which shows best represented each of the five most recent decades.

Game of Thrones stole the 2010-2019 category, garnering 74% of the vote, compared to No. 2 Stranger Things’ 56%, and The Big Bang Theory’s 45% for third place.

We also asked which TV star ruled in the decade — no surprise here: The entire cast of Game of Thrones won with 45% of the vote; followed by Benedict Cumberbatch, who snagged 9% of the vote (Sherlock showed up at No. 24 in the list of TV titles that “defined the decade”); and, in third place, Veep‘s Julia Louis-Dreyfus with 8%.

Disagree with the survey results? Tell us in the comments who you think should have made the list or have been ranked higher.

Veep (2012)

Synopsis: A comedy following the public and private lives of U.S. vice president Selina Meyer and her staff.... [More]

Synopsis: The privileged lives of L.A.'s blended Kardashian-Jenner family are chronicled.... [More]
Directed By: Chris Ray

Doctor Who (2006)

Synopsis: Following the adventures of a time-traveling alien called "The Doctor" and companions as they deal with crises set on Earth... [More]

True Blood (2008)

Synopsis: HBO's hit drama series created by Alan Ball ('Six Feet Under') and based on the best-selling Sookie Stackhouse novels by... [More]

Better Call Saul (2015)

Synopsis: The evolution of "Breaking Bad" lawyer Saul Goodman is the focus of this prequel to the hit series.... [More]

Synopsis: Live from New York, celebrity hosts join an ensemble cast to perform comedy on Saturday nights. Capturing the pop-culture zeitgeist,... [More]

Glee (2009)

Synopsis: Musical comedy-drama about the misfits who make up a high-school singing club and teacher Will Schuester, the one-time glee-club star... [More]

Grey's Anatomy (2005)

Synopsis: The story revolves around five surgical interns and their supervisors, showing their personal and professional lives.... [More]

Black Mirror (2011)

Synopsis: Black Mirror is an anthology series that taps into our collective unease with the modern world, with each stand-alone episode... [More]

The Handmaid's Tale (2017)

Synopsis: Adapted from the classic novel by Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale is the story of life in the dystopia of... [More]

Synopsis: A mockumentary following the inner workings of the Parks and Recreation Department of Pawnee, Ind. From the creators of... [More]

Modern Family (2009)

Synopsis: A mockumentary-style sitcom chronicling the unusual kinship of the extended Pritchett clan, a brood that includes patriarch Jay; his younger... [More]

This Is Us (2016)

Synopsis: The Pearson family's generational story unfolds in this emotional drama. In moments of joy and heartbreak, revelations emerge from parents... [More]

Synopsis: A horror anthology series from Brad Falchuk and Ryan Murphy.... [More]

Downton Abbey (2011)

Synopsis: This period drama, set in the English countryside which is centered on the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and... [More]

Synopsis: A New York woman struggles to adjust to life in a federal prison.... [More]

The Walking Dead (2010)

Synopsis: The story of the years that follow after a zombie apocalypse, following a group of survivors led by a former... [More]

The Big Bang Theory (2007)

Synopsis: A new comedy about a pair of brilliant physicists who understand how the universe works but have no clue about... [More]

Stranger Things (2016)

Synopsis: A love letter to the '80s classics that captivated a generation, Stranger Things is set in 1983 Indiana, where a... [More]
Directed By: Matt Duffer

Game of Thrones (2011)

Synopsis: An adaptation of author George R.R. Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" medieval fantasies about power struggles among the... [More]

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