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By Stacie Bearup

The most popular shows on television and what they may have in common

There are many varieties of television shows to choose from these days. From the land of Westeros to a post-apocalyptic world taken over by re-animated corpses, there is something for everyone. The ratings for television shows change frequently, but there are a few shows that seem to stay on top.

Currently, the most popular show on television is HBO's "Game of Thrones." This television series, based on a series of novels by George R. R. Martin, is set in a fictional world in which there is a constant battle for what is known as the iron throne. "Game of Thrones" immerses viewers in a fantasy world that includes dragons, giants and whatever else is North of the Wall. The show keeps viewers wanting more after each episode, especially after one of the many famous cliffhangers and unexpected deaths of beloved characters. There are many twists and turns throughout the series, and the viewers can only guess what will happen next.

Other shows that are extremely popular are AMC's "The Walking Dead" and "Fear The Walking Dead." Both shows take place in the same world where a virus has caused re-animated corpses, or "walkers," as they are referred to on the show, to bring about an apocalypse. "The Walking Dead" takes place in the southern United states, mostly Georgia, and begins a few months after the outbreak. "Fear the Walking Dead" is set on the East Coast and begins during the outbreak. Though the themes of these two shows are vastly different from that of "Game of Thrones," there are some similarities. All three shows have well-developed characters that the viewer can't help but care about and often root for. But in all three of these shows, no character is safe. These shows have no qualms about killing off main characters. Even after a beloved character, or in some cases, characters, are killed off in the most brutal of ways, viewers still come back for more. It could possibly be that many of us just want to check in on those characters that we have grown to love, or maybe there is something exciting about not knowing what is going to happen next.

Something else that many of the most popular shows on television share is that they take place in a world where things that are not normal in our everyday lives occur. In popular shows like CW's "The Flash" and "Arrow," one or more of the characters have abilities that set them apart from others. Arrow's hero, Oliver Queen, has perfect aim with a bow and arrow, while The Flash is faster than humanly possible and often referred to as the fastest man alive. The CW show "Supernatural" also deals with things that are not of the norm in this world. From demons to just about any other supernatural creature imaginable, the viewer never quite knows what the Winchesters will be facing next. Maybe these shows provide an escape from daily life, or maybe it is just that the characters are easy to relate to. Whatever the reason, these shows appear to be doing something right and are keeping numerous viewers, myself included, quite entertained.

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