Ranking THR's 50 Best Television Showrunners

By Dustin Rowles | Lists | October 4, 2012 | Comments ()

By Dustin Rowles | Lists | October 4, 2012 |

Over on The Hollywood Reporter today, they've released their list of the 50 Best Television Showrunners, but weirdly, they were not ranked. Revealing the 50 Best showrunners currently on television is kind of like naming ALL the showrunners. Sure, there are some missing (Greg Daniels on The Office, for instance), but when you're ticking off the showrunner for Dallas, you know you've basically hit the bottom of the barrel and you've offered now real qualitative analysis. Moreover, they've included Neilsen ratings in their methodology, and I dislike when quality is conflated with ratings. They're two different things, obviously.

So, for my own edification and because it's more likely to provoke disagreement (yay! Internet fuel!) I've taken their list of the 50 Best Showrunners and I've ranked them from worst to best. Once I got to the top 15 or so, I began to understand why THR decided not to rank: It gets a little dicey.

50. Cynthia Cidre -- Dallas
49. Bruce Helford -- Anger Management
48. Michael Patrick King -- 2 Broke Girls
47. Chuck Lorre -- Two and a Half Men, Big Bang Theory, Mike & Molly
46. Carol Mendelson and Pam Veasey -- Team CSI
45. Oliver Goldstick and Marlene King -- Pretty Little Liars
44. Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage -- Gossip Girl and Hart of Dixie
43. Peter Lenkov -- Hawaii 5-0
42. Salim and Mara Brock Akil -- The Game
41. Janet Tamaro -- Rizzoli and Isles
40. David Crane and Jeffrey Klarik -- Episodes
39. Matt Nix -- Burn Notice
38. Bruno Heller -- The Mentalist
37. Shane Brennen and Gary Glasberg -- Team NCIS
36. Jonathan Nolan and Greg Plageman -- Person of Interest
35. Greer Shephard -- Longmire
34. Team Seth MacFarlane -- Family Guy
33. Blake Anderson, Adam Devine, Anders Holm, Kyle Newachek and Kevin Etten -- Workaholics
32. Emily Kapnek -- Suburgatory
31. Shonda Rhimes and Betsey Beers -- Grey's Anatomy, Private Practice and Scandal
30. Mike Kelley -- Revenge
29. Kevin Willamson and Julie Plec -- The Vampire Diaries
28. Hart Hanson -- Bones
27. Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis -- Once Upon a Time
26. Al Jean -- The Simpsons
25. Carter Bays and Craig Thomas -- How I Met Your Mother
24. Steve Levitan and Christopher Lloyd -- Modern Family
23. Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk -- American Horror Story and Glee
22. Glen Mazzara -- The Walking Dead
21. Aaron Korsh -- Suits
20. Greg Garcia -- Raising Hope
19. Lauren Iungerich -- Awkward
18. John Wells -- Shameless
17. Kurt Sutter -- Sons of Anarchy
16. Jullian Fellows -- Downton Abbey
15. Liz Meriwether, Brett Baer and David Finkel -- New Girl
14. David Caspe, Jonathan Groff and Josh Bycel -- Happy Endings
13. Terence Winter -- Boardwalk Empire
12. Michelle and Robert King -- The Good Wife
11. Aaron Sorkin -- Newsroom
10. Armando Ianucci -- Veep
9. Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner -- Girls
8. Jason Katims -- Parenthood
7. Alex Gansa -- Homeland
6. Mike Schur -- Parks and Recreation
5. Louie C.K. -- Louie
4. Graham Yost -- Justified
3. Matthew Weiner -- Mad Men
2. D.B. Weiss and David Benioff -- Game of Thrones
1. Vince Gilligan -- Breaking Bad

(Source: THR)

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