What shows to record during the strike -- Set your DVR to watch old episodes of ''Seinfeld'' and ''The X-Files''

By Ken Tucker
Updated January 18, 2008 at 05:00 AM EST

What shows to record during the strike

Refuse to be a hostage to the networks’ reruns-‘n’-reality regime: Get these shows on DVD and be your own TV honcho. Some are classics, some are brilliant cult gems; all are edifying, even educational, fun.


8 p.m.
Arrested Development
Start the week with our beloved pinnacle of wit.

8:30 p.m.
The Tick
Not the cartoon: Patrick Warburton’s short-lived live-action super-sitcom.

9 p.m.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
The great, passionate second season: Spike! Drusilla! Angel! Death!

10 p.m.
Melrose Place
Start midway through season 1 — when Heather Locklear joins the cast.


8 p.m.
Any season but the last of TV’s second-best working-class sitcom.

8:30 p.m.
The Honeymooners
Roseanne is the warm-up for TV’s greatest working-class sitcom.

9 p.m.
Crime Story
Michael Mann’s underrated 1986 — 88 Chicago police saga.

10 p.m.
Once and Again
Divorce and its aftermath: fraught and joyous.


8 p.m.
Check out the third season: Peter Falk’s fumbly-smart detective in his prime.

9 p.m.
Murder One
Keep the crime theme going with season 1 of Steven Bochco’s daring legal-drama experiment.

10 p.m.
Law & Order: Criminal Intent
Vincent D’Onofrio was best in his first season, before his mannerisms became labored tics.


8 p.m.
Season 4, with my favorite ep: Chandler in a box.

8:30 p.m.
Me, I like Early Jerry, complete with stand-up routines at the top of the show.

9 p.m.
Any episode where the great Phil Hartman is central is comedy gold.

9:30 p.m.
Buffalo Bill
Dabney Coleman’s superb 1983 precursor to The Office and 30 Rock.

10 p.m.
Adrian Pasdar was the anti-Hero of this cult 1996 send-up of office politics as blood sport.


8 p.m.
The Wild Wild West
TV’s first Western comedy-adventure-fantasy.

9 p.m.
The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr.
TV’s funniest Western comedy-adventure-fantasy.

10 p.m.
The Rockford Files
The most likable TV detective ever.


8 p.m.
The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Still the most lovable TV producer of all time.

8:30 p.m.
All in the Family
A taboo breaker; Archie Bunker got away with funny bigotry.

9 p.m.
The Bob Newhart Show
The one where he’s a shrink, not an innkeeper.

9:30 – 11 p.m.
Saturday Night Live
Season 2: Chevy Chase out, Bill Murray in.


8 p.m.
The Cosby Show
Season 2, lip-synching to Ray Charles: priceless.

8:30 p.m.
Sanford and Son
Redd Foxx could be funny just being grumpy.

9 p.m.
Freaks and Geeks
Judd Apatow’s first great comedy.

10 p.m.
The X-Files Try the first season, with lotsa stand-alone scares.