11 Survival TV Shows Worth Watching

Plague, nuclear holocaust, and alien invasions! Whatever end-of-the-world / post-apocalyptic theme you can think of is on TV right now. But in the fray of TV shows for preppers, a lot of good shows have come and gone. If you feel like all of the best shows are canceled prematurely, no one shares your pain like we do. In this list, we want to focus on 11 survival TV shows (past and present) that we think are worth checking out.

1. Jericho (2006)

jerichoThis apocalyptic drama which aired back in 2006, was based on the story of a group of people in a little town in Kansas called Jericho as they struggle to survive the affects of nuclear fallout in several major cities around the U.S. The interesting twist to this show is that there is an underlying tone suggesting the government might have actually been complicit in the explosions. The town’s citizens come together to try to restore resources such as power and water and war with neighboring towns over debatable local resources. The writers did a great job with the story line and keep you hooked with the strength and vulnerability of each character. They also manage to sprinkle in some humor for good measure – not to mention the amazing soundtrack. Jericho was suddenly canceled after the first season and was met with a barrage of complaints to CBS from the shows loyal fans. After launching a grassroots internet mega-campaign to revive the show CBS agreed to bring it back for one more season and at least wrap up some of the unanswered questions.


2. Falling Skies (2011)

falling skies - 2011In a world where civilization has been incapacitated by alien attack, we follow the story of a group of rag-tag survivors in the Boston area. In this post-apocalyptic world, there are no more electronics, military’s or major cities left, leaving only a handful of the world’s previous population to fight off the ongoing invasion. The odds are steep and survival is difficult when every day is is spent protecting and caring for the people, while also waging an insurgency campaign against an occupying alien force.      

3. Survivors (2009)

survivorsSurvivors is a British post-apocalyptic fiction drama that follows a similar premise as a lot of the other survival shows; the pandemic wipes out most of the population, society breaks down, people try to figure it all out. But what I really liked about this one is that they kind of make hero’s out of normal, everyday people who didn’t really even know they had it in them until it really came down to it. They were just normal people until things got crazy and forced them to rise to the occasion, which is what I think we’re going to see a lot of in the E.O.T.W.

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Survival Spot is dedicated to helping everyone learn philosophy and fundamentals of preparedness and survival.

29 Responses

  1. Dustin

    Man Woman Wild. EXCELLENT wilderness survival show. Currently enjoying a second season right now on Discovery Channel.

    Apocalypse Man is a good show, about on par with Man vs Wild, but specifically tailored to suburban/urban survival.

    Doomsday Preppers is a decent show illustrating different approaches as well as feedback regarding the preparedness level from an independent evaluation source cited to be a subject matter expert.

    After Armageddon is a great show depicting what could play out after a pandemic – the vignettes are broken up by subject matter expert's advice/caution.

    • MeYu

      Anything with Bear Whatever-his-name-is makes this list automatically null and void.

  2. Gwen

    Glad you put Jericho on the list! The Jericho story continues in the season 3 graphic novel, now available from Amazon. The story starts at the end of season 2 with Jake and Hawkins in Texas with the bomb. We get to meet a new Green family member, learn the backstory of John Smith and watch as the fractured US grows closer to Civil War!

    • Connor

      Nice! I didn't know that it had a graphic novel. I freaking loved that show.

    • jimmy

      I was a fan of that show too. Netflix doesn’t show the part 2 of the 1st season fanally, unless you have the DVD service. I was saddend that it got canceled. I’ll have to look for that graphic novel. Thanks for that.

  3. A Texan

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! My wife has been almost completely apathetic about preps, and has allowed me (under some protest) to store a modest amount of food and water and to buy some basic equipment.

    Now, however, because of this article I started watching Jericho with her last night on Netflix. I haven't mentioned a word about preps, I'm just letting her take it in. She's officially hooked after 2 episodes…and said that she'd be fine watching the other 27 episodes. I am sure that before long she'll at least unconsciously become more prep-oriented and less resistant to the idea of storing extra food, etc. I've been banging my head against the wall trying to find a way to get her to not only consider prepping more, but actually DOING more (because intentions aren't worth a thing when the balloon goes up). Again, THANK YOU!

    • Survivalspot

      Glad to hear that your wife is opening up to the idea of prepping! I can only imagine how challenging it must be to have a partner who isn't on board with you in that regard. It takes up such a huge amount of your time (and resources) that it's almost impossible to get fully prepared without their support. Survival shows and movies seem to be a great starting point for those who have a harder time wrapping their head around the idea..
      Thanks for the positive feedback and best of luck to you and your wife in your future preps!

    • mom of five

      Give her the book one second after that will change her mind.

  4. Kay

    I saw this post and decided to try the show Jericho. I have to tell you, this is one of the best TV shows I have ever watched. I definitely recommend it! Survirors was good too once you got into it. The first episode wasn't great, but after that I liked it.

  5. JS1985

    I cant find some of these shows like disaster survival and extreme survival ive looked on netflix and some of the other movie sites and tv show sites and nothing

    • jimmy

      I came across this site while searching for ‘Surviving Disaster’ episodes. It was on Spike TV and although they show all the episodes on their webpage, you can only watch a few.

  6. jon

    Hey! I just noticed another message in another blog that seemed like this. How have you learnt all this stuff? That’s one cool post.

  7. Michael Ruiz

    I love watching survival movies and TV shows. I remembered that my most survival movie when I was a kid is Cast Away by Tom Hanks. In fact until now it is still my favorite. I watched several times already. I was really amazed on he survived along in an island without survival equipment.

  8. will

    no walking dead??? no doomsday preppers? its like you just blew off the best ones

    • Survivalspot

      Hey Will, we need to update this post due to new shows coming out. The walking dead is one of our favorite shows here at Survival Spot. Thanks for the feedback!

  9. tim

    I would like preppers more if nat geo would take it more seriously. the walking dead is entertaining at best. I like zombie movies but it is starting to get old. I am looking forward to revolution in the fall. I really wish hollywood would make a survival movie showing how average people survive disasters instead of sensationalizing every disaster that comes about. why not help save lives for a change.

  10. neglesvamp

    Hey, Nice list. I'll have a look at the shows that i did not see yet.
    I'm a huge fan of survivorman. It's proberly because he is so down to earth. And the stuff he does it the stuff your should do if you get lost. And the fact that he does not have a camera man and a sound guy + random assistens hanging around all the time, just makes it more real and fun to watch.

  11. Tony

    Thanks for the list, not even seen most of them but will certainly be checking them out. I can recommend the Ray Mears extreme survival series, I like how he talks with indigenous people & picks up tips from them for the particular areas he's in, and the survival stories he recounts from the areas he's visiting are equal parts interesting and inspiring. I highly recommend his Ray Mears Northern wilderness series too. Bear Grylls does some extreme things in his series, true. But he rarely shows or explains techniques in sufficient detail & it was revealed in the press that some stuff was fabricated, also that while he was 'supposed' to be spending the night out in the wilderness area and relying on his skills, he would actually be whisked away to spend the night in a nice comfy hotel. More show and less substance with Grylls.

    Another couple of interesting programs were made with former SAS special forces soldier Chris Ryan. Terror alert could you survive…….covers things like terrorist attack, mass blackouts, plane hijacking etc. And Hunting Chris Ryan is also worth watching. The premise is that he's dropped into different environment's with minimal equipment, he's then pursued by a hunter force made up mainly of former US and UK soldiers & has to reach a rendezvous point in order to escape. Entertaining & some interesting tips can be picked up along the way.

    Thanks again for the list, much appreciated.

  12. linda

    New TV series show called "Revolution" -Monday nights Pacific time 10 pm, great show that deals with entire blackout and every move and decision you make is about survival.

  13. pj22

    Revolution, new show about about U.S. power outage and the fallout, survivorship and warring… entertaining at best. Mostly just about the people's lives & stories. Not incorporating tips about how to survive, make water potable, etc. Just another show. It does make you think about what to do in event of no power, not counting on it for everything, being prepared, but it is not a teaching show

  14. Jules

    Hey, does anyone know of a end-of-the-world type TV series in about 2010 (I think) I remember a scene where a black woman interrogates and executes a man, and another scene in a warehouse stocked full of food where a guy gets shot in the leg (?) and the girl he's with nicks off instead of helping him… any ideas?

  15. E2U

    Jules….Survivors. It's on netflix

  16. Chris

    New survival show on the CBC….. Being canadian, because most of us know this stuff already

  17. Adrian

    lol! In Dual Survival, I just like how there's a down to Earth person who's in touch with mother nature & respecting her laws & there's this hearty cunt who's a complete opposite of him who doesn't give a fuck about what he thinks & they both have to survive together.

  18. Megan

    For those that like doomsday preppers (and yes some of the people on the show are out there) apocalypse 101 had more practical info. As for those that bash doomsday preppers, people have had fears and built shelters since the cold war. That doesn’t mean you can’t take away valuable tidbits from the show. Also Dual Survival no longer has Cody Lundin or Dave Canterbury in the cast. It is now Joe Teti and Matt.

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