Blood and gore are prevalent in the 10 best violent TV shows. Whether it is a police procedural, a crime drama or a historical reenactment, the violence on TV continues to rise. Despite family groups complaining about the acts shown on TV, a number of these shows remain the best networks have to offer.
- “Oz”– “Oz” takes place in a maximum-security prison, centering around the lives of the inmates. HBO allowed the violent TV show's producers to get away with scenes that networks never would have allowed. One university study determined that there were 76 violent acts per episode.
- “The Shield”– “The Shield” aired on FX and told the story of a fictionalized police strike team loosely based on the Rampart Division of the LAPD. The violence was surprising considering the fact the show aired on a basic cable network. The first episode depicted the head of the Strike Team shooting a fellow officer in the head and it only grew darker from there.
- “Dexter”– This Showtime violent TV show introduces Dexter as a crime scene specialist who also happens to be a serial killer. The series supposes that being a serial killer is an inherited trait that our hero always has to fight. In order to satisfy his blood lust, he only kills bad people, who he then chops into pieces and deposits into the harbor in black trash bags.
- “Criminal Minds”– “Criminal Minds” focuses on an FBI team tasked with stopping the most deranged, violent serial killers. The violent TV show switches back and forth between the team putting the clues together and the killers torturing and killing their prey. Unlike many procedurals on TV, “Criminal Minds” rarely pulls its punches when showing a bad guy hurting his victims.
- “Sons of Anarchy”– “Sons of Anarchy” follows a motorcycle gang in Northern California who are involved in many illegal enterprises. The violent TV show presents the gang as both sociopaths and antiheroes with the violence rising to the top. The show includes shootings, stabbings and beatings. There are people crushed under cars, corpses burned and a man killed by an axe to the head. It is also one of the best shows on TV.
- “The Sopranos”– “The Sopranos” is the show that started it all. Without Tony Soprano and his Mafia family, there wouldn’t be an “Oz” or “Shield.” The show is unique in the depiction of the Mafia don as a normal guy with serious problems. Between the scenes of Tony in therapy and at home dealing with his wife and kids, there are violent depictions that might make "The Godfather" blush.
- “The Wire”– No less than Harvard and Duke University teaches a university course over "The Wire." What makes this violent TV show brilliant is the equal insight it gives the good guys, bad guys and everyone in between. It may not be as violent as its contemporaries but it is better than just about any other show on TV.
- Rome– "Rome" takes place in an era full of betrayals, beheadings and assassinations. The HBO series exists in Julius Caesar’s world of gladiators and soldiers. It is another show that never would have made it on network television thanks to the gore, blood, violence, sex and torture.
- Deadwood– “Deadwood” contains enough explicative’s to give a movie an NC-17 rating, making HBO the perfect home for the series. The show takes place in the western town of Deadwood, South Dakota and introduces a number of historic characters such as Wild Bill Hickok and Wyatt Earp.
- WWE Raw– WWE has become more PG in recent years but it still presents men in tights beating each other up for the delight of thousands of people. Sample story lines of years gone by include a hit and run in a parking garage and the “murder” of a manager by burying him in fresh cement. It is cartoon violence in the ring but underneath it all, the violence is real and demented.
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