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1986-87 Television Season

The top five shows of 1986-87 were Golden Girls, Murder, She Wrote, Cheers, Family Ties, with the most popular being Cosby Show. (See below for the list of the top 30 programs.)

Shows that began before 8:00 p.m. on Sunday nights included 60 Minutes and Our House. FOX debuted as a network in 1986, but it did not have a regular national schedule until the fall of 1987. Select a show below to read all about it and to share your memories!

Prime Time TV Schedule for 1986-1987
    8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30 10:00 10:30
Shows that aired on Mondays ABC MacGyver Monday Night Football
CBS Kate & Allie My Sister Sam Newhart Designing Women Cagney & Lacey
NBC Alf Amazing Stories NBC Monday Night Movie
Shows that aired on Tuesdays ABC Who's The Boss Growing Pains Moonlighting Jack and Mike
CBS The Wizard CBS Tuesday Night Movie
NBC Matlock Crime Story 1986
Shows that aired on Wednesdays ABC Perfect Strangers Head of the Class Dynasty Hotel
CBS Together We Stand Better Days Magnum P.I. Equalizer
NBC Highway to Heaven Gimme a Break You Again St. Elsewhere
Shows that aired on Thursdays ABC Our World Colbys 20-20
CBS Simon & Simon Knots Landing Kay O'Brien
NBC Cosby Show Family Ties Cheers Night Court Hill Street Blues
Shows that aired on Fridays ABC Webster Mr. Belvedere Sidekicks Sledge Hammer Starman
CBS Scarecrow and Mrs. King Dallas Falcon Crest
NBC A-Team Miami Vice L.A. Law
Shows that aired on Saturdays ABC Life with Lucy Ellen Burstyn Show Heart of the City Spenser: For Hire
CBS Downtown Mike Hammer Twilight Zone
NBC  Facts of Life 227 Golden Girls Amen Hunter
Shows that aired on Sundays ABC ContinuedDisney Sunday Movie ABC Sunday Night Movie
CBS Murder, She Wrote Crazy Like a Fox Trapper John, M.D.
NBC Easy Street Valerie NBC Sunday Night Movie
    8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30 10:00 10:30

Note: Television seasons have generally begun in September of each year. And new shows often do not last the entire season. The shows below began the new season but did not necessarily run all the way through to summer reruns.
Continued - Indicates show began before the time period indicated. 

1986-87 Ratings

Rank Show Network Estimated
1. The Cosby Show NBC 30,502,600
2. Family Ties NBC 28,579,800
3. Cheers NBC 23,772,800
4. Murder, She Wrote CBS 22,199,600
5. The Golden Girls NBC 21,413,000
6. 60 Minutes CBS 20,364,200
7. Night Court NBC 20,276,800
8. Growing Pains ABC 19,839,800
9. Moonlighting ABC 19,577,600
10. Who's the Boss? ABC 19,228,000
11. Dallas CBS 18,616,200
12. Newhart CBS 17,043,000
13. Amen NBC 16,955,600
14. 227 NBC 16,518,600
15. Matlock NBC 16,256,400
16. CBS Sunday Night Movie CBS 16,256,400
17. NBC Monday Night Movie NBC 16,256,400
18. Monday Night Football ABC 16,081,600
19. Kate & Allie CBS 15,994,200
20. NBC Sunday Night Movie NBC 15,906,800
21. L.A. Law NBC 15,207,600
22. My Sister Sam CBS 15,207,600
23. Falcon Crest CBS 15,120,200
24. Highway to Heaven NBC 15,032,800
25. Dynasty ABC 15,032,800
26. Knots Landing CBS 14,683,200
27. Miami Vice NBC 14,683,200
28. Alf NBC 14,421,000
29. Hunter NBC 14,421,000
30. Head of the Class ABC 14,333,600
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