The TV Addict’s Top 10 TV Pilots that TV Guide Forgot

Traditionally, when one of TV Guide’s ‘controversial’ lists, or as I like to call them — desperate attempts to make up for the fact they no longer seem to remember how to break actual news — shows up in my inbox, I am fairly quick to click ‘send to trash.’

But something about this weeks list of Top 10 Pilots got my attention. Namely, what TV Guide neglected to include.

So with that in mind, thought we’d present a few of our favorite pilots that might have slipped TVGuide’s mind.

[Their list which by the way can be picked up on newsstands now included 24, THE SHIELD, THE SOPRANOS, 30 ROCK, FOOTBALL WIVES, DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES, SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE, ER and ALIAS]

1. STUDIO 60 ON THE SUNSET STRIP: The colossal failure of Aaron Sorkin’s STUDIO 60 ON THE SUNSET STRIP was made all the more disappointing when one looks back at the brilliance of the SUNSET pilot. Not only was it one of Aaron Sorkin’s finest hours of television, it elicited  “Let Bartlett Be Bartlett” levels of chills.

2. BATTLESTAR GALACTICA: While one might argue that the miniseries was the show’s actual pilot, the first episode that followed, titled ’33,’ brilliantly crystalized what fans would come to expect from the Peabody Award Winning series over the course of the next four seasons. Gritty realism, unimaginable death and nearly impossible life and death choices. Yes, pretty much from day one, our intrepid heroes were totally Frakked. And we’ve loved every moment of it.

3-7. EVERWOOD, FELICITY, JACK & BOBBY, VERONICA MARS and GROSSE POINTE: In the same callous manner in which Emmy Voters inexplicably managed to snub the WB each and every voting season, so to did TV Guide by completely neglecting to include any of these great WB shows. Not only did JACK & BOBBY, FELICITY and EVERWOOD have this this TV Addict reaching for the kleenex from the moment their respective theme songs started rolling. VERONICA MARS and GROSSE POINTE both equaled pilot perfection thanks to their brilliant mix of interesting characters, witty one-liners and sharply penned pilot scripts.

8. FRIENDS: Before the haircut, the break and the ugly naked guy. There was a frazzled almost-bride named Rachel who escaped from her wedding only to end up in some random uber-trendy coffee shop. Thus setting off a chain of hilarious events that would provide millions of fans with ten years of laughter, romance and somewhat unfortunately — incredibly unrealistic New York real estate expectations.

9. PRISON BREAK: How such a simple premise like Michael Scofield breaking out of prison became such an international phenomenon we’ll probably never know. But if we had to guess, it probably had a little something to do with Wentworth Miller and his iconic tattoo.

10. PUSHING DAISIES: Also known as the number one reason why HD TV’s are a must buy for any TV Addict.

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  • John

    In your header for items 3 – 7 you only show 4, not 5, shows. You left out Felicity, which you do mention in the text.

  • John,

    Thanks for the heads up!

  • blueberry

    Was Lost’s two-parter ever even mentioned in any one’s list? Or was the pilot that good that no one has to mention it because it’s already a given.

    Excuse me while I let this camera take a shot of my eye only to have it pan back to see that I am lying on my back in the jungle with all these screaming people and burning wreckage around me.

  • Armando A

    I agree Lost Pilot was really good. I think that the Grey’s Anatomy Pilot was WAAAY better than Desperate’s one.

  • Bob Roberts

    Alias? 1 1/2 hours of movie quality viewing !!!! The show never got the credit it deserved, and was mistreated by the network

  • Linda B.

    I agree w/ everything said about Lost, Felicity, Alias, and Grey’s Anatomy.

    I have to disagree about Studio 60… i ONLY watched the pilot and was bored and never tuned in again.

    Okay, why is that Supernatural promo playing right now???!!! I jump every time it automatically goes off!

  • Bob and Linda, Completely agree about ALIAS. Easily in my Top 3 Pilots ever. That moment when SpyDaddy Jack Bristow rescued Sydney in the parking lot and she looked at him and said, “DAD!” OMFG!

    And Linda, I apologize about the SUPERNATURAL promos. I’ll have a talk with the advertising folks.

  • I totally agree about Pushing Daisies and Grosse Pointe but as much as i LOVE Everwood and Veronica Mars (2 of my fave shows of ALL TIME), I disagree. I didn’t think the pilots were perfect but both shows GREW into perfect shows but yes, they did have incredible potential built into the pilot already. (Everwoods was emotional but didnt completely sell me yet).

    Still great list for a good discussion. Ive been trying to post one of my own but I’m still trying to come up with my 10 pilots of all time.