"No show has been more responsible for TV’s storytelling renaissance, in which writers use character both as engines for commenting on the contemporary world and for teasing out the ways in which action reflects psychology in the troubled inner lives of real people," wrote Paul Brownfield, introducing the list.
The list, a result of WGA member voting, includes a somewhat surprising number of shows from the past decade, even still on air.
"Mad Men," at No. 7, comes in as the top show still running, followed by "Breaking Bad" at No. 13.
"Arrested Development," which recently got a conflicting reviews for its bold, but not always successful, experimental fourth season, got the 16th spot. Jon Stewart's "The Daily Show" was 17th.
Rounding out the top 10 are "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" at No. 6, "Cheers" at No. 8, "The Wire" and "The West Wing" at Nos. 9 and 10.