10 TV Shows That Completely Shifted The Balance Of Power In America

9. The Shield (FX: 2002-2008)

With premium juggernaut HBO making history, basic cable upstart FX swooped in with the next big anti-hero, only this time we were playing the other side of the fence. The Shield revolved around LAPD detective Vic Mackey - an old school, hard-nosed badass with a stellar clearance rate and an understanding of the street - and his special gang-squad task force. Problem is, he was also dirty: Vic and his team skimmed and cheated and robbed criminals, all the while collecting praise from the cops around them for their results, and while that may all sound a little common place, it wasn't. The show's creator Shawn Ryan (The Chicago Code) was able to develop in-depth characters and complex story lines that often couldn't be wrapped up in one episode. Unlike Tony Soprano, you'd find yourself rooting for Vic pretty regularly; he wasn't a good guy, but often times he was still better than whoever he was chasing. That is until a good cop or an innocent would get in his way or threaten his stranglehold on control of his team. Mackey was played to perfection by Michael Chiklis, and surrounded by acting talent like that of Walton Goggins (Justified), who played his partner Shane Vendrell. The cast, the writing, the production were all top notch and this show put FX on the map, and by the time it finished its run, Oscar-caliber talent like Glenn Close and Forrest Whitaker had made huge contributions to the story, lured from the big screen to be part of something special. On basic cable.

Based just north of Detroit Michigan, Brian Kronner writes for Geek Magazine, and acts as their Managing Web Editor at GeekExchange.com Past web-works include founding of Grizzly Bomb, contributions to TvFanatic and a writer/editor at Bam Kapow...