There have been so many sci-fi shows in the past ten years that it is hard to choose only a few best among them. So I have tried my best to choose from what I have seen and what I consider the best.
The below list of 10 sci-fi shows includes the shows which were released between 2013 and 2022 and have ended their run. I have not included any ongoing show which is yet to complete its run, it also doesn't include any franchise-based show - Star Wars, Star Trek, Marvel, or DC.
12 Monkeys is a sci-fi series created by Terry Matalas and Travis Fickett. It aired between 2015 and 2018 on SyFy for four seasons. 12 Monkeys has a time-traveling plot loosely adapting the 1995 film of the same name.
The series is set in the year 2043, where scavenger James Cole gets recruited by a team of "Project Splinter" scientists led by physicist Katarina Jones to travel back in time to the year 2015 and stop the release of a deadly virus by the enigmatic organization known as the "Army of the 12 Monkeys". In Cole's original timeline, the virus caused a plague that resulted in the death of seven billion humans in the year 2017, and its ongoing mutations will mean the eventual end of the human race. In the 2015 timeline, Cole will meet and enlist the help of brilliant virologist Dr. Cassandra "Cassie" Railly. Cole will also encounter a seemingly unstable math genius named Jennifer Goines, whose father Cole has been tasked to kill. Meanwhile, Cole and Cassie try to unveil the identity and whereabouts of the mysterious leader of the Army of the 12 Monkeys, who is only known as "The Witness", and is always one step ahead of them.
Westworld is a sci-fi Western TV series created by Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy that aired between 2016 and 2022 on HBO for four seasons. It is based on the 1973 film of the same name and loosely upon its 1976 sequel, Futureworld. It was canceled in 2022 due to decline in viewership.
Westworld, a fictional, technologically advanced Wild West-themed amusement park filled with robotic "hosts," is where the story begins. The park caters to high-paying guests who can explore their wildest dreams without fear of punishment from the hosts, who are programmed not to hurt humans. Later in the series, the scenario shifts to the real world in the mid-twentieth century, where people's lives are guided and controlled by a powerful artificial intelligence known as Rehoboam.
Aired between 2014 and 2020 on CW, The 100 follows post-apocalyptic survivors from a space habitat, the Ark, who return to Earth nearly a century after a devastating nuclear apocalypse. The series has seven seasons of which the first five seasons are the best.
Set 97 years after a nuclear war destroyed the Earth, the remaining humanity dwells in space stations that have banded together to form the "Ark". Every offense, regardless of the reason or severity, is punishable by death in the "Ark." ("Floating") However, the "Ark's" life support system is deteriorating, and 100 youths who committed "crimes" are considered expendable and transported to Earth to determine whether it is habitable. They are given wristbands that monitor their health and transmit it to the "Ark." The 100 rapidly establish a "no law" rule on Earth, but teens learn they are not alone while searching for food. There are other humans and altered creatures on Earth.
The Expanse is a sci-fi series developed by Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby for the Syfy network, based on the series of novels of the same name by James S. A. Corey. The series is set in a future where humanity has colonized the Solar System. The series ran for six seasons between 2015 and 2022.
It follows a disparate band of protagonists including United Nations Security Council member Chrisjen Avasarala (Shohreh Aghdashloo), police detective Josephus Miller (Thomas Jane), and ship's officer James Holden (Steven Strait) and his crew, as they unwittingly unravel and place themselves at the center of a conspiracy that threatens the system's fragile state of the cold war while dealing with existential crises brought on by newly discovered alien technology.
Counterpart is a sci-fi thriller series starring J. K. Simmons. It was created by Justin Marks and was first broadcast on the premium cable network Starz. The series ran for 20 episodes across two seasons between 2017 and 2019.
The series follows Howard Silk, a gentle, quiet office worker, who has been working for a Berlin-based United Nations agency, the Office of Interchange (OI), for thirty years. The OI oversees a checkpoint below its headquarters between parallel Earth (the "Alpha" and "Prime" worlds). The parallel Earths emerged in 1987 during an East German experiment in which only a scientist named Yanek was present. Yanek from the "Alpha world" met his counterpart from the "Prime world," and they quickly began exploring how the originally identical Earths diverge.
The disparities between the two worlds became increasingly evident after 1996, when a flu pandemic killed hundreds of millions in the Prime world, slowing technology progress but boosting life sciences. The virus was suspected of being deliberately injected into the Prime world by the Alpha world, resulting in a severe cold war between the two worlds, with counterparts acting as spies and sleeper agents. Silk's Alpha world remains similar to ours, but the Prime world changes dramatically. Howard Silk Prime is a cunning intelligence agent. During the series, a powerful rogue faction on Prime executes long-simmering plans to take revenge on Alpha.
Travelers is a sci-fi series created by Brad Wright, starring Eric McCormack, Mackenzie Porter, Jared Abrahamson, Nesta Cooper, Reilly Dolman, and Patrick Gilmore. The first two seasons were co-produced by Netflix and the Canadian specialty channel Showcase. The series ran for three seasons between 2016 and 2018.
Hundreds of years from now, the last surviving humans discover the means of sending consciousness back through time, directly into people in the 21st century. These Travelers assume the lives of seemingly random people, while secretly working as teams to perform missions in order to save humanity from a terrible future. These travelers are - FBI Special Agent Grant MacLaren, the team's leader; Marcy, a young, intellectually disabled woman in the care of her social worker, David; Trevor, a high school quarterback; Carly, a single mom in an abusive relationship; and Philip, a heroin-addicted college student. Armed only with their knowledge of history and an archive of social media profiles, the travelers discover that 21st-century lives and relationships are as much a challenge as their high-stakes missions.
Wayward Pines is a mystery sci-fi series based on the Wayward Pines novels by Blake Crouch. Developed for television by Chad Hodge, the pilot was directed by M. Night Shyamalan, with both as executive producers. The series ran for two seasons on Fox between 2015 and 16, before it was canceled in 2018.
In the first season, Ethan Burke (Matt Dillon) is a United States Secret Service agent investigating the disappearance of two fellow agents in the remote Idaho village of Wayward Pines. Ethan wakes up after a vehicle accident, unable to communicate with the outside world and unable to escape. One of the agents is dead, and the other, his former lover Kate Hewson (Carla Gugino), has relocated to the apparently lovely village. On the other hand, the residents of Wayward Pines are trapped by an electrified fence and a set of laws enforced by the harsh Sheriff Arnold Pope (Terence Howard). Any attempt to flee is met with a public execution known as a "reckoning," in which the Sheriff slashes the condemned's throat.
Lost in Space is a sci-fi series following the adventures of a family of space colonists whose ship veers off course. The series is a reboot of the 1965 series of the same name, inspired by the 1812 novel The Swiss Family Robinson and the 1962 Gold Key comic book Space Family Robinson, created by Del Connell and artist Dan Spiegle. The series ran for three seasons between 2018 and 2021 on Netflix.
Set in 2046, the Robinson family is chosen for the 24th mission of the Resolute (24th Colonist Group), an interstellar spacecraft carrying selected families and people to colonize the Alpha Centauri planetary system, two years after an impact event that threatens humanity's future. An alien robot breaches the Resolute's hull before they reach their destination. Hundreds of colonists, including the Robinsons, crash on a nearby habitable planet after being forced to flee the mothership in many short-range Jupiter spacecraft. As they look for a way back to the Resolute, they must struggle with an unfamiliar environment and confront their own personal problems.
Dark Matter is a sci-fi series started in 2015 that was developed by Prodigy Pictures in association with the Space channel and the Syfy channel. The concept was created by Joseph Mallozzi and Paul Mullie while they were working on the Stargate franchise and was originally published as a comic book series in 2012.
The series follows a group of people in stasis pods who awakens aboard the starship Raza. They have no memory of who they are or what happened to them before awakening, so they adopt the names One through Six in the order in which they emerged from stasis and start figuring out who they are and what happened to them. A female-looking android with a wireless neural link to the ship is also on board. Soon, the crew discovers that they are a gang of mercenaries who are among the galaxy's worst criminals, forcing them to choose between continuing their previous selves' vicious path and finding forgiveness. Secrets from their forgotten pasts frequently disrupt their lives.
Colony is a sci-fi series created by Carlton Cuse and Ryan J. Condal, starring Josh Holloway and Sarah Wayne Callies. The series ran for three seasons between 2015 and 2018 on USA Network before getting canceled.
The series is set in a dystopian near-future Los Angeles, where residents live under a regime of military occupation by an organization known as the Transitional Authority. The Authority works for an extraterrestrial race known as the "Hosts," about whom little is known until much later in the series. The Authority enforces host policy with militarized police known as Homeland Security, also known as the "Redhats" due to the crimson helmet cover that covers their otherwise black tactical outfit.
The Hosts gained control on the "Arrival" day. That day began with huge global communication interruption and jamming, which followed a weeklong global search for important key figures. Late that day, giant rectangular bricks plummeted from the sky, joining together to form city walls. Other comparable walls, known as "blocs," have been built around nearby metropolitan districts, with the entire complex referred to as a "colony."
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