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Spy Vs. Spy: Power Ranking TV's Favorite Spooks And Secret Agents

By Joanna Robinson | Lists | March 8, 2013 |

By Joanna Robinson | Lists | March 8, 2013 |

What factors played into today’s highly scientific Power Ranking that I spent a lot of time mulling and didn’t at all dash it off in my hotel room so you would have something to distract you on a Friday afternoon? Uhhhhh. The best spies have a facility with foreign languages, are masters of disguise and deception. They can keep calm in tense situations and, above all else, look good carrying a weapon. Enjoy. I’ve saved my current TV obsession for last.

Michael Westen — “Burn Notice”: Have you ever tried narrating mundane activities in Michael Westen’s signature droning voice-over? It’s obscenely fun. “When you’re a spy, it’s always important you brush even those hard to reach back teeth.”
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Agent 99 — “Get Smart”: Maxwell Smart wouldn’t have made it without Agent 99 to pick up his slack. Shoe phones will only get you so far.

Sterling Archer — “Archer”: I don’t watch this show. I did this so you wouldn’t yell at me. XO.

Fiona Glenanne — “Burn Notice”: This girl wore a fashionable fanny pack for more than one season and used the contents of it to blow ALL the things up. She’s the best. Her Irish accent is the worst. But she’s the best.

MacGyver — “MacGyver”: Well, what can you do with a comb and some tissue paper?

John Casey — “Chuck”: John Casey was so delightful he made me want to forget everything I knew about Adam Baldwin.

Carrie Mathison— “Homeland”: Yes, okay, she’s a basket case, but she’s a damn good analyst and it’s a joy to see her working an informant.

Lucas North — “Spooks”: I had a lot of options from “Spooks” but I was reasonably certain you’d torch me if I deprived you of Armitage.

Agent Vaughn — “Alias”: Hmmmmm, did this show take place in the early 2000s? I can’t tell.

Alexander Scott — “I Spy”: As quick on the trigger as he was with a comeback, Cosby’s spy was one cool cat.

Charles Carmichael — “Chuck”: Oh Chuck, the computer who wore tennis shoes.

Jack Bristow — “Alias”: Don’t mess with Spy Daddy. Don’t even think about it.
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Mrs. Peel — “The Avengers”: Not the first to wear quite so much leather, but possibly the best.
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Jack Bauer — “24”: He saved the world. A lot.

Nikita — “La Femme Nikita”: Yeah I went “old school.” It’s still the third time this particular story has been told.

Phillip Jennings — “The Americans”: Let’s all just pretend Mr. Keri Russell got his preternaturally rosy lips from kissing information out of some hapless CIA operative, shall we?
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Sarah Walker — “Chuck”: Yeah there are sexier photos of Yvonne Strahovksi, but few cooler.
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Sydney Bristow — “Alias”: Garner played this tall drink of badass so well. Even when the plot got a little too…well…Abrams-y, she was always a pillar of strength.

Elizabeth Jennings — “The Americans” Sweet sassy molassy. If you’re not watching this show, you’re missing out. Keri Russell is a pistol of the highest caliber.
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