article on the current trend toward post-apocalyptic TV dramas, here’s a list of such shows to date.
It’s interesting to note that we could have had three end-of-the-world TV dramas running at the same time in the U.S. in 2012 if NBC had gone ahead and aired “Day One.” That show was supposed to premiere in 2009-10, but NBC changed its mind and canned it instead.
My provocative headline – “Post-apocalyptic TV dramas proliferating. Part of Obama’s legacy?” – caught the attention of one reader who wrote a lengthy defense of President Barack Obama in the comments section. I’m not sure the rise of post-apocalyptic TV dramas has anything to do with Obama’s presidency, but the mood of the general public seems pretty downbeat.
The reader, RSM, makes the point that the television movie “The Day After” ran during the Reagan years.
But since Obama took office, five post-apocalyptic TV series have premiered (as of August 2012). During the two terms of his predecessor, President George W. Bush, two premiered in the U.S.
List of post-apocalyptic TV shows
Updated Jan. 29, 2017.
Planet of the Apes (CBS, 1974)
Survivors (BBC, U.K.; 1975-77)
Ark II (CBS, 1976)
Logan’s Run (CBS, 1977-78)
The Tripods (BBC, U.K.; 1984-85)
War of the Worlds (Syndicated, Canada; 1988-1990)
Woops! (Fox; 1992)
The Last Train (ITV, U.K.; 1999)
Thunderstone (Network Ten, Australia; 1999-2000)
The Tribe (Channel 5, U.K.; 1999-2003)
Dark Angel (Fox; 2000-02)
Jeremiah (Showtime; 2002-04)
Jericho (CBS; 2006-08)
Maddigan’s Quest (TV2, New Zealand; 2006)
Survivors (BBC, U.K.; 2008-10)
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles (Fox; 2008-09)
Dollhouse (Fox; 2009-10)
The Walking Dead (AMC; 2010-present)
Falling Skies (TNT; 2011-2015)
Revolution (NBC; 2012-2014)
Defiance (Syfy; 2013-2015)
The 100 (The CW; 2014-present)
Dominion (Syfy; 2014-2015)
The Last Ship (TNT; 2014-present)
The Leftovers (HBO; 2014-present)
The Lottery (Lifetime; 2014)
Z Nation (Syfy; 2014-present)
The Strain (FX, 2014-present. Turned apocalyptic in season 3.)
12 Monkeys (Syfy; 2015-present)
The Last Man on Earth (Fox; 2015-present)
Wayward Pines (Fox; 2015-present)
Fear the Walking Dead (AMC; 2015-present)
Zoo (CBS; 2015-present. Turned apocalyptic at end of season 1.)
Into the Badlands (AMC; 2015-present)
The Shannara Chronicles (MTV; 2016-present)
Colony (USA; 2016-present)
Van Helsing (Syfy; 2016-present)
Aftermath (Syfy, 2016)
Photo: DVD cover for “Jericho.”