What's the longest-running U.S. sci-fi show?

16945__sg_l_1While no one was looking, Stargate SG-1 (starring Ben Browder, Christopher Judge, and Claudia Black) become the longest-running sci-fi series in American TV history, now that SciFi Channel has renewed it for a 10th season. (SciFi has also renewed spinoff Stargate Atlantis for a third season.)

Anyone know what the longest-running sci-fi show on our planet is? (I’m guessing it’s Dr. Who.) And does anyone want to explain to the group what’s behind the longevity of SG-1? My theory: That MacGyver guy can do anything.


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  • daisyj

    Um, nice theory, but that’s not the MacGyver guy. That’s the Farscape guy who replaced him.

  • Ep Sato

    I have never understood the popularity of SG-1. The longest running sci fi show of all time has got to be The X Files, at least stateside…
    As for why SG-1 has lasted forever, it follows a simple formula. An unnusual storyline and plot that began as a major motion picture, and a low enough budget helps Sci fi afford to keep it on the air. Plus, Universal (which owns Sci Fi Channel) produces the show in-house.
    What I find most interesting about that show is how most sci-files are quick to dis it, but despite an apparent lack of fans, the show continues to excell.
    Using this formula, it is surprising that Universal hasn’t purchased the rights to make a Serenity spin off or doesn’t take the opportunity to make more episodes of the much better written and better acted Galactica.

    • jon

      SG-1 is amazing… plain and simple. I guess you have to really like science fiction to enjoy it, which you seem not to. A show doesn’t ever last 10 years unless it’s considered good my a large fan base, fact.

  • Harold

    wow, the fact checking is impeccable there. sheesh.

  • brandonk

    Just like “7th Heaven,” which has also been on for 10 years, I’ve never watched “Stargate SG-1.” The movie was good, but the TV show never looked as good.

  • blah

    How long was Star Trek: TNG on? That had to have lasted at least 7 or 8 seasons? For some reason I thought it had made it to ten.
    I’ve never seen either Stargate show, but I know one person who watches it quite obsessively. Having the guy from Farscape makes it appeal a little more, but not enough to make a point of watching it.
    And you’re totally right brandonk. This is exactly like 7th Heaven! I know maybe one person who watches each show, yet somehow these shows produce enough revenue to keep them going.

  • A2K

    Props to SG-1 for keeping Sci-Fi channel in business over the years. Now they’ve taken it to the next level with Battlestar Galactica.
    Is Richard Dean Anderson even on SG-1 anymore?

  • Vlash

    Star Trek TNG, DS9 and Voyager all had 7 seasons, Enterpise had only 4 and TOS had four. X-files had 9 seasons. I’m amazed by the other comments here, they aren’t exactly helpful or many go off topic.
    Stargate’s secret is probably the combination of comedy, sci-fi and action. It appeals to many different groups, but probably not the most hardcore. Personally it is one of my favorites, right after Battlestar Galactica and Babylon 5.

  • Kanner12

    The “NEW GUY” in the Stargate series is Ben Browder From the series Farscape ! ! !

  • mozz

    I only started watching when Ben Browder and Claudia Black joined the show… SG1 may be the longest running scifi series… But FARSCAPE was far and above THE BEST.

  • Whedonverse

    It’s almost certainly Doctor Who which has had a total of 27 seasons, 3 movies and a tv movie. It began way back in 1963 and ended in 1989 with a number of episodes “lost” along the way. (Although these resurface every now and again through collectors realising they’ve got a missing episode in their attic!) It was picked up again in 2005 with the 27th season starring Christopher Eccleston and Billie Piper and written by Russell T. Davies. A new series is starting next year with a new doctor and we’re also expecting a christmas special very soon and a spin-off for the character of Captain Jack sometime next year.
    Star Trek TNG lasted 7 seasons by the way.

  • Me

    I gotta say the X-Files! I like Stargate, but I loved FARSCAPE and the X-FILES and I am only watching the STARGATE shows for CLAUDIA BLACK, BEN BROWDER and MITCH PILEGGI.
    ‘Nuff said.’

  • Ed

    Our bad. That’s not Richard Dean Anderson in the photo — made the fix. Thanks!

  • Ron

    Star Trek:TOS only ran 3 seasons.

  • Maryland

    I keep trying to watch SG-1, but it’s pretty bad. Even though bringing on Ben Browder and Claudia Black helped a lot. Favorites? Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica (new), and Farscape. Don’t have a clue why SG-1 has lasted so long. After the smashing Farscape, BB and CB deserve a better venue. Hope they get it.

  • abundantraymo

    You’ll be interested to know that the longest running sci-fi show in the world (if we’re going on number of episodes) is actually Stargate SG-1. Doctor Who only comes it 180ish eps (I think it’s 187 but don’t quote me) including the new season.
    The reason why it works – it has a great cast, who have great chemistry, a well structured arc lacking in most sci-fi and TV shows in general and it’s budget and viewers match up. Expect it to be around for a while longer.

    • Kris

      Actually Doctor Who had over 700 episodes all together. Stargate only had like 214. I love both shows though. I love RDA and Claudia Black and Amanda Tapping. oh and Christopher Judge is awesome! He does the voice of magneto on one of the newer x-men cartoons…lol i heard him and I knew it was him!

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