Here are the 20 most-watched episodes of TV ever, ranked

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seinfeld 4


The "Seinfeld" series finale.

In today's streaming age, live broadcasts of important TV episodes are no longer the massive cultural events they once were.

According to Nielsen 's measurements of the top network telecasts of all time, the top 20 most-watched TV episodes ever all date back at least a decade. (The "Seinfeld" finale episode in 1998, which had a very mixed reaction, was the most recent episode to crack the top 100.)

Decades-old miniseries like "Roots" and "The Thorn Birds" and finale episodes of the most popular shows in TV history dominate the list.

We compiled the data from Nielsen on the most-watched broadcasts ever to create this list of the top episodes of TV.

Note: We've excluded from the list all live broadcasts, including Super Bowls and award shows, as well as movies broadcasted on TV - all of which appear prominently in Nielsen's top 100.

Check out the top 20 most-watched episodes of TV ever:

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