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The 50 Best TV Dramas of All Time

19. Friday Night Lights

Network: NBC, DirecTV's The 101 Network
Air Dates: October 3, 2006 – February 9, 2011
Stars: Kyle Chandler, Connie Britton, Gauis Charles, Zach Gilford, Minka Kelly, Adrianne Palicki, Taylor Kitsch, Jesse Plemons, Scott Porter, Aimee Teegarden, Michael B. Jordan

Texas. Football. Beer. These things go together like peanut-butter and jelly. You want to play football, boy? No, that shit is dangerous. You want to watch a decent sports show, so you can act like you know what's going on during the Superbowl? OK, check out Friday Night Lights, the teen drama set in a small Texas town, where everybody knows your name—and everyone is slightly racist.

For a show that sometimes leaned too hard on cliches, like underdogs and must-win games, the characters are some of the most vivid: like a coach and his wife who actually get along and bicker about boring things, like household decorations. Or football players who know that they're going to peak in high school. We wouldn't expect anything less from the TV show based on a quality movie, based on a quality book, which was based on real life. —TA

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