Top 10 CW Shows of All Time
VOICE OVER: Emily Brayton
Script written by Spencer Sher
Here's the Top 10 CW Shows of All Time! Since 2006 The CW has broadcast dozens of hit programs, now it's time to decide which ones are the best. We've included shows like Supernatural, Gossip Girl, The Vampire Diaries, Gilmore Girls, Jane the Virgin, Smallville, iZOMBIE, The Flash and America's Next Top Model.
Top 10 CW Shows of All Time
Since 2006 The CW has broadcast dozens of hit programs, now it’s time to rank our favorites. Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 CW Shows of All Time.
For this list, we’ll be looking at the most successful and beloved shows in the history of the CW network.
#10: “America's Next Top Model” (2003-)
One of the longest running reality TV series of all time, “America’s Next Top Model” became a member of The CW family when its former network merged with The WB in 2006 to form the CW. The show would enjoy its best years while operating under The CW flag, stepping up its game by including even more celebrity guests as well as well known figures from the world of fashion and beauty. The show, which was hosted by former model and actress Tyra Banks, pitted aspiring models against each other in a competition to see who would take home the title of “America’s Next Top Model”. In 2016, the show started airing on VH1 and was hosted by singer Rita Ora, but Banks announced her return to the show in March 2017 for for Cycle 23.
#9: “The Flash” (2014-)
“The Flash” is a superhero drama based on one of DC Comics’ most popular and enduring characters: Barry Allen a.k.a. Flash. In this version, Allen is a crime scene investigator operating in fictional Central City, who gains superhuman speed after being struck by lighting. With his newfound powers, Allen becomes the superhero known as Flash and uses his skills to fight crime. The show, which is a spinoff of “Arrow” – another CW property – was an instant hit with fans and critics alike, with the pilot episode garnering the second most views of any premiere in CW history. If you’re a superhero junkie, then this show is definitely for you!
#8: “iZOMBIE” (2015-)
If you’re looking for a zombie themed show that doesn’t take itself too seriously but still has all the flesh-eating madness of “The Walking Dead”, then “iZombie” is for you. It is loosely based on a comic book series of the same name and stars Rose Mclver as Olivia “Liv” Moore, which is a bit of a misnomer considering she’s an undead zombie who works at the morgue to feed her insatiable need for brains. Oh, and each brain she eats allows her to see how that particular person died. Hooked yet? The show has been on The CW since 2015 and shows no signs of slowing down.
#7: “One Tree Hill” (2003-12)
Set in the fictional town of Tree Hill, this show began as a straightforward teen drama, but as the characters aged it began to deal with more complex and mature storylines. Stacked from top to bottom with a cast of talented, not to mention attractive stars, the show would endure for nine seasons. Like many of the shows on this list, “One Tree Hill” joined The CW when The WB and UPN merged back in 2006. It would go on to become one of the network’s most popular and longest running series. It was also nominated for many Teen Choice Awards during its run, and took home the statue for “Choice Throwback TV Show” in 2017.
#6: “Smallville” (2001-11)
One of the first and longest running superhero dramas on television, “Smallville” burst onto the scene in 2001 and stuck around for an impressive 10 seasons. The show focused on a teenage Clark Kent - a.k.a. Superman – as he struggled to come to terms with his superhuman powers while growing up in the not-so-quiet town of Smallville, Kansas. Throughout its run, the show averaged approximately 4.34 million viewers per episode and took home a number of awards, including three Emmys. It was so well received that even former Superman Christopher Reeve agreed to make a couple of guest appearances!
#5: “Jane the Virgin” (2014-)
Hold onto your hats, because the plot of this CW show is straight up bonkers. A religious young woman who’s vowed to remain a virgin until marriage has her life turned upside-down when her doctor artificially inseminates her by mistake during a gynecologist appointment. The show turned out to be a massive critical and commercial success, thanks in large part to lead actress Gina Rodriguez’s performance, something that earned her a Golden Globe for Best Actress in 2015. The show’s first two seasons actually have perfect scores on Rotten Tomatoes as of October 2017. Now that’s impressive!
#4: “Gilmore Girls” (2000-07)
For seven seasons, fans watched as single mother Lorelai Gilmore did her best to raise her daughter Rory in the fictional small town of Stars Hollow, Connecticut. The show was widely praised for its seamless blend of drama and comedy as well as for its sharp dialogue and numerous pop culture references. While “Gilmore Girls” may have only appeared on The CW for one season, that’s good enough for us. Nowadays, the show is considered one of the best of the 2000s and in 2016 fans got to return to Stars Hollow thanks to a four part miniseries released on Netflix.
#3: “The Vampire Diaries” (2009-17)
The CW knew it had a hit on its hands from the moment the pilot episode of “The Vampire Diaries” hit the airwaves. The show’s first episode was the largest premier for a CW show in network history, with the first season ultimately averaging 3.6 million viewers per episode. “The Vampire Diaries” focused on the exploits of Elena Gilbert, a teenager who enters into a love triangle with two immortal vampires. The show took home numerous awards during its run and sparked one of the hottest questions in TV history: are you Team Damon or Team Stefan? The show proved to be so popular that a spin-off series called “The Originals” was released in 2013.
#2: “Gossip Girl” (2007-12)
“Gossip Girls”’ ratings might not have blown anyone away during its six-season run, but its cultural influence cannot be denied. The show, which followed a group of wealthy Manhattan teens whose lives are constantly being scrutinized by a mysterious blogger known only as “Gossip Girl”, influenced dozens of films and TV shows and is often credited with helping to popularizing mobile communication. From a fan standpoint, “Gossip Girl” was an overwhelming success, taking home 18 Teen Choice Awards during its run. You can’t bring up the CW without mention this iconic teen drama.
Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
“Veronica Mars” (2004-07)
“The 100” (2014-)
#1: “Supernatural” (2005-)
“Supernatural” has been one of The CW’s flagship shows for more than a decade and for good reason. The series follows Sam and Dean Winchester, two brothers who travel from town to town hunting evil supernatural creatures. “Supernatural” is the longest running live-action fantasy series in American TV history with its 13 seaon premiering in 2017, making it all the more surprising that there was a time when it was at risk of being cancelled. The show has won numerous awards during its run and has spawned multiple spin-offs, a testament to its indelible nature. It will be a sad day for television when this CW mainstay goes off the air.