We’re running down our favorite shows of the decade! In addition to our favorite action/adventure series and favorite procedurals, and relationship-focused programming, we’re on to a big one — supernatural series!
Here is a reminder that we have almost two dozen favorites lists, and since we couldn’t showcase every show on every list, we parsed them out a bit to make it more fun.
And these lists are not in any particular order. They’re in the order the entries were received by TV Fanatic staff, so don’t read into them!
To qualify, a show that began in another decade had to be airing during the decade, run a larger number of seasons from 2010 through 2019 if it started before 2010 or run the entire decade. Here we go!
The Vampire Diaries Universe – The CW (2009-present)
For a show that many believed was going to be a watered-down version of Twilight, it had a long run. With a thrilling love triangle at the center, and intriguing mysteries to boot, all eight seasons worth watching.
Thanks to the detailed world we were introduced to, a spinoff titled The Originals followed. That one last five seasons, and took a considerably darker approach. It had thrills, chills, and everything in between.
From the third series in the franchise, Legacies Season 2 has a much lighter tone than the two shows that came before it. Even better is that the writers have learned from their mistakes with love triangles. Legacies features easter eggs for fans of the franchise and will continue to keep the legacy alive well into the next decade.
Penny Dreadful – Showtime (2014-2016)
In three beautifully-curated seasons, Showtime presented a reframing of classic sensationalist literature, portrayed by some of the most talented performers of this generation.
Led by the luminous Eva Green as Vanessa Ives, a character born adjacent to the Dracula mythos, this was a production filled with gorgeous imagery, innovative narratives, and fresh interpretations of well-known characters like Dr. Frankenstein (Harry Treadaway) and his monster (Rory Kinnear), Dorian Gray (Reeve Carney), and The Wolf-Man (Josh Hartnett).
The true masterstroke was in ending only one storyline in the finale. Like the titular penny dreadful novels, the series was inspired by, any of the other characters could have spun-off into another season or sequel series.
It was a satisfying ending with the potential for many more adventures.
True Blood – HBO (2008-2014)
True Blood burst onto the scene in 2008, and the vampire genre was never the same.
Based on The Southern Vampire Mysteries book series by Charlaine Harris, True Blood created a world where humans and vampires coexisted without secrecy, and it was just as twisted as you can imagine.
It was a bloody mess every week, and at the height of its popularity, every Halloween party would feature a slew of people dressed in their finest Merlotte’s wear.
It was a pop-culture phenomenon and will go down as one of the most popular supernatural series ever.
The Exorcist – FOX (2016-2018)
The Exorcist is likely the most underrated series of the decade.
Season one was specifically brilliant, with its plot twists and the absolute most underrated television performance by Geena Davis. Davis not getting an Emmy nod was the biggest slight of the decade as well. She was absolutely glorious.
Add in the hot AF guys (Alfonso Herrera, Ben Daniels, John Cho – HOT DAMN)) and it’s impossible to determine how it got so little attention. Likely a Friday evening timeslot was its demise.
We urge everyone to go back and watch this one now. It was as scary as TV could be and had a couple of jaw-dropping moments that required calling to discuss with loved ones!
American Horror Story – FX (2011-present)
American Horror Story is the anthology series that does horror right! Whether you’re a fan of haunted houses, witches, blood curses, or of the macabre, there was a season that could appeal to your dark side and draw you in.
The characters are well-written with rich backstories, and its eerie tone balances the drama, which usually involves a plot that tears down its characters and drives them deeper into the chaos.
And the scares match its tone for the season’s theme: go for creepy horror in Asylum, political chaos in Cult, or even ‘80s flair in 1984, AHS has it all! American Horror Story also includes an established list of acting talent that dominates every part they take on, like Jessica Lange, Evan Peters, Sarah Paulson, Emma Roberts, Billie Lourd, and Lily Rabe.
But that’s not even including the long list of talent that has graced the AHS screen during its decade history! This is the TV show you need to binge-watch ASAP.
Lucifer – Fox/Netflix (2016-present)
Not all supernatural series have to be creepy and eerie; they can have some fun with a side of devilish charm.
That is why Lucifer is a must-watch from the decade! Taking on the role of the flawed-yet-dashedly handsome Lucifer, Tom Ellis captivates the screen with his wit, charm, and “cheeky” side. Lucifer injects a flair for the dramatics while he solves crimes and becomes attached to his new mortal friends.
(Seriously, did we also mention how crushworthy Tom Ellis is?!)
With a dynamic and charismatic cast, Lucifer pulls us into their soapy and addictive plots, like Lucifer/Chloe’s “Will they? Won’t they?” romance, Dr. Linda’s therapy sessions, and Mazikeen’s complicated friendships.
You can’t help but want to join this motley crew of investigators.
The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina – Netflix (2018-present)
Taking off from the success of Riverdale, Netflix took on a new spin on Sabrina Spellman. Sabrina the Teenage Witch was reflective of the period it aired. It had the quirky sitcom vibe of its fellow shows like Boy Meets World which it allowed it to be extremely successful.
The Sabrina of this new take is much edgier, just like the teen dramas that fill TV today. It is a rare occasion when a show can take on witchcraft in a successful way, but The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is the show we have been waiting for.
This show isn’t focused on Sabrina using her magic to help her ace her next test or make the new boy in school notice her, yet there are occasional moments like this. Instead, it has a much darker focus including dealing with Satan himself.
Whereas many supernatural shows focused on teenagers can get bogged down by relationship drama, the supernatural element to Sabrina never takes back seat allowing it to stand out.
Ash vs Evil Dead – Starz (2015-2018)
Groovy Bruce Campbell and his pal Sam Raimi managed to bring the magic and raw humor from the Evil Dead franchise to television without even having the rights to the movies that followed.
Ash Williams was the same guy who was originally stuck in a cabin with his undead girlfriend and the Necronomicon with more color and vicious kills than ever before.
Fans were invested in El Jefe and his cohorts Pablo and Kelly, and the series even had the good fortune of tossing Lucy Lawless into the role of the big bad Ruby while still giving fans reason to hope she’d be redeemed.
Stranger Things – Netflix (2016-present)
Stranger Things premiered in 2016 and became an overnight hit.
The award-winning show is the perfect combination of horror, nostalgia, and teen angst that appealed to audiences of all demographics.
We have seen twelve-year-olds fighting demogorgons, Sean Astin become a superhero, and Russians taking over a small Indiana town.
Every new season that premieres quickly becomes the best the show has produced, and we cannot wait to see what is in store with Stranger Things Season 4.
The Secret Circle – The CW (2011-12)
This series from the people who brought us The Vampire Diaries was a witchy treat. It featured the likes of Phoebe Tonkin and Britt Robertson as witches.
The show built momentum throughout its first and only season, solidifying itself is one of the best supernatural shows of the decade.
Its cancellation led to campaigns aimed at other networks to bring it back for more seasons. T
he CW’s decision to cancel it was controversial, but it was definitely not related to the quality of the show.
The Passage – FOX (2019)
Fun fact: The Passage was the highest-rated canceled show of 2019.
It had a strong plot, acting, and a series finale that changed the shape of the entire series. As a supernatural series, the mythology was there to keep the show going for years.
It’s a shame the great storytelling will not be rewarded with closure.
Teen Wolf – MTV (2011-2017)
This reboot of the ‘80s film classic was one of MTV’s highest-rated and most successful series whose popular and ratings increased due to its large online fanbase and streaming.
The series bolstered a multiracial cast that explored werewolf lore during a time when the vampire craze was at its height. But with its clever and creepy writing and creativity, it weaved in all sorts of mythological creatures and beings less known and explored.
It had some of the richest and most in-depth mythology with incredible twists and turns that kept you on the edge of your seat. It went in unimaginable directions and showed that it truly didn’t have any limits.
It had some of the best supernatural writing for a modern-day series in addition to fascinating and endearing characters who spent just as much, maybe even more time fighting off creatures and saving their town as they did playing lacrosse and going to algebra.
Supernatural – The CW (2005-present)
For 15 seasons, we watched Sam and Dean’s journey as they saved the world from monsters and supernatural beings of every kind.
Their journey has never been easy, and there has been plenty of drama and heartache along the way, but their incredible bond is what has made the show beloved by fans.
The battle for their souls left us hanging on the edge, but their commitment to each other and the greater good is what kept them (and us) going. Dean’s love of classic rock and roll, Sam’s fear of clowns, their clever use of FBI aliases, and other antics made for a fun ride.
Supernatural started as a “monster of the week” show developing into a more complicated arc involving all sorts of bad guys and gals, angels, and demons, possessions, and even God himself.
The show explored many urban legends and introduced us to multi-faceted characters that made us take a different look at evil — not all demons, witches, and ghosts are bad to the bone. Sam and Dean have one last journey ahead of them before hanging it up.
We hope it’s a good one and that it ends with both brothers getting everything they want and deserve.
The Walking Dead – AMC (2010-present)
Though the series has it’s fluff, but there is no question to the impact of The Walking Dead.
The series juggles the human condition and the willingness to survive in an environment of horror. The Walking Dead puts forth so many questions on how far someone would go to protect their loved ones? How to raise a child in chaos?
Who could a person become to survive in a complicated world? There are so many highlights to the series, from Zombie Sophie walking out of the bar, dictator Rick, and the game-changer Negan.
The Walking Dead makes you scream, cry, laugh, and smile. The series will go into the next decade, and it’s well-deserved.
The Magicians – SyFy (2015-present)
What started as an adaptation of Lev Grossman’s The Magicians’ trilogy, quickly surpassed its source material.
From its poignant and realistic look at depression to its inane and magical musical numbers and its constant evolution, The Magicians is one of the best TV storytelling of the decade.
It’s most recent season made the controversial decision to kill of Quentin, the lead character, but upon his death, the series also managed a sound discussion on why white, cisgender men are always the main character when other options exist.
iZombie – The CW (2015-2019)
Izombie is one of the most underrated series on The CW. The zombie show was from the creators of the cult hit Veronica Mars, and it even had a revolving door of actors from the series making appearances throughout the show’s tenure.
It had a similar, witty, whip-smart protagonist with Liv Moore and nonstop puns for days, making it one of the funniest series on the network and creative to boot. It was a fresh take on the zombie topic and was the first female-led series in that genre.
At the helm was Rose McIver who a truly remarkable talent who managed to bring such life, pardon the pun, to undead Liv Moore while also managing to channel multiple personalities in every installment in performances that were a work of art.
You have to see it to appreciate it.
Being Human – Syfy (2011-2014)
An almost direct remake of the British version of Being Human, the American version took on a life of its own for three former humans in the form of a vampire, werewolf, and ghost.
Their histories from birth to rebirth were fully fleshed out, and the world fully realized with all of the danger to both humans and the supernatural.
Sam Witwer, Meaghan Rath, and Sam Huntington starred in this series from Anne Fricke and Jeremy Carver and delivered on all of the promises it made from inception through its conclusion.
Never did the supernatural feel as much like all of us as it did with Being Human.
Grimm – NBC (2011-2017)
David Giuntoli starred in this supernatural/adventure/procedural show from Stephen Carpenter, David Greenwalt, and Jim Kouf as a detective who learns he’s one in a long line of supernatural hunters.
What seems black and white to start suddenly is laced with gray when Nick Burkhardt discovers supernatural creatures have as many variations and span the scale from good and evil as humans.
Haven – Syfy (2010-2015)
Based on the short story by Stephen King, Haven starred Emily Rose, Lucas Bryant.
Emily played Audrey Parker, an FBI agent investigating a crime in the small town of Haven catching the attention of two Haven residents and frenemies, Nathan and Duke.
It was slowly revealed that Audrey appears every couple of decades as a different person entirely but always intertwining with the regulars to stop their Troubles — a series of emotionally-triggered issues plaguing the town ranging from memory loss to invisibility to murderous rampages.
From the beginning to the end, this procedural-style supernatural series kept viewers on their toes and yearning for the next chapter.
Les Revenants aka The Returned – Sundance (2012-2015)
This French series kicked off what became a bit of a revolution for the undead who weren’t traditional zombies.
Taking place in a small French town, the dead begin returning without any recollection that they had died causing myriad dilemmas for them and their loved ones.
It was a moving story and entirely spooky with few answers provided until late in the game.
Sleepy Hollow – FOX (2013-2017)
The creeptastic supernatural horror series based on The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is still one of the most talked-about series of the decade.
The series won fans over instantly with the lightning-in-a-bottle chemistry between Ichabod Crane and Abbie Mills, who could not be more opposite of each other but who were the two witnesses whose fates were entwined as they were destined to fight a supernatural apocalypse together.
Ichabod was brought back to life over a century later which contributed to the whimsical and comical tone of the series as he was forced to adapt to modern life while fighting evil with Abbie, his better half.
While the series never matched the quality of its incredible first season, it’s a beloved series that dug into all sorts of biblical, historical, and other folklore for exciting monsters of the week that had to be slain.
What’s YOUR favorite supernatural show of the decade?