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It appears to be all the rage now, binge-watching favorite TV  series. Especially with the advent of Netflix originals, where a whole season of episodes is dumped at once for our viewing pleasure. But even before that, many of us were renting complete seasons on DVD to watch in the comfort of our homes. It’s the antithesis of traditional network viewing with episodes spoon-fed to viewers once a week for short periods of time while shoveling in five-minute commercial breaks every six minutes. It’s enough to make you want to unplug network TV. And many have.

Some critics are calling this the new golden age of TV, where thoughtful, complex characters, riveting plots, solid story arcs that span the series as well as each episode, and quality production values matter. The Sopranos is frequently cited as the beginning of this golden age, and still often tops critic’s list for best all-time TV series. Breaking Bad is a new contender for the top spot, and several others are shaping up to be worthy competitors.

I’ve jumped on the binge-watching wagon, although I usually limit myself to 3 episodes per week. I like to give the shows time to percolate between viewing, and since I watch TV only on the week-ends, it gives me something to look forward to, when hubby and I can kick back and enjoy the sugar rush.

Here’s our top 25 binge-worthy TV series so far, in no particular order expect for the categories listed below. Some are highly acclaimed, some are just fun, all are addictive.

Complete Series Available

The Sopranos

Breaking Bad

Six Feet Under

Big Love

Justified

The Shield

24

Battlestar Gallactica

Dexter

The Killing

Rome

Deadwood

Torchwood

Luther

The Borgias

Boardwalk Empire

Series in Progress

Homeland

Downton Abbey

Orange Is the New Black

House of Cards

Game of Thrones

The Americans

New and Promising

Outlander

Black Sails

True Detective

I have to add a couple of other note-worthies that I didn’t include above: The PBS Horatio Hornblower series, which came out in 1981 and is only available on DVD, and The White Queen, based on the historical book series by Phillipa Gregory, which unfortunately was cancelled after one season.

What have you been watching that you can recommend? Anything included here? Anything new? I’d love to hear what you think.

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