ALAN SEPINWALL discusses his book TV: THE BOOK, with JON HAMM

TV (The Book) Two Experts Pick The Greatest American Shows of All Time (Grand Central Publishing)

Is The Wire better than Breaking Bad? Is Cheers better than Seinfeld? What's the best high school show ever made? Why did Moonlighting really fall apart? Was the Arrested Development Netflix season brilliant or terrible? 

For twenty years-since they shared a TV column at Tony Soprano's hometown newspaper-critics Alan Sepinwall and Matt Zoller Seitz have been debating these questions and many more, but it all ultimately boils down to this:  What's the greatest TV show ever? 

That debate reaches an epic conclusion in TV (THE BOOK). Sepinwall and Seitz have identified and ranked the 100 greatest scripted shows in American TV history. Using a complex, obsessively all- encompassing scoring system, they've created a Pantheon of top TV shows, each accompanied by essays delving into what made these shows great. From vintage classics like The Twilight Zone and I Love Lucy to modern masterpieces like Mad Men and Friday Night Lights, from huge hits like All in the Family and ER to short-lived favorites like Firefly and Freaks and Geeks, TV (THE BOOK) will bring the triumphs of the small screen together in one amazing compendium. 

NOTE: As with all Skylight Books in-store events, this reading is free and open to the public (first come, first served) and you do not need a ticket for entry.  

  • Alan Sepinwall will be the only one signing books, directly following his Q&A with Jon Hamm. Jon Hamm will not be signing memorabilia after the event is over and will not be posing for photos. 
  • To get a spot in the signing line, you must purchase a copy of TV (The Book) here at Skylight Books.

Praise for TV (The Book)

TV (The Book) is going to start fights and I mean that as the highest compliment. In fact, the book is more fun if you disagree with its authors, informed and thoughtful as they are. But bring your best game because they sure did."—Laura Lippman, New York Times bestselling novelist

"What fun to dive into a book that not only inspires but invites debate over your favorite TV shows.  Which ones truly deserve to be in the Pantheon? Which ones did or didn’t make the cut? Any book that celebrates everything from The Sopranos to Rocky and Bullwinkle gets my attention…and deserves yours."—Leonard Maltin, film critic/historian/lifelong TV junkie

“I hate Top Ten lists and am existentially opposed to numerically rating television shows, so this book is my worst nightmare! You should buy it anyway, because Alan and Matt are shrewd, witty and insightful critics, even if they are wrong about Cheers being better than 30 Rock.”—Emily Nussbaum, The New Yorker

“It’s the Golden Age of TV,  yes, but  TV: The Book shows we are also in the Golden Age of  TV criticism. In the same way so many of us made Leonard  Maltin’s Movie Guide or Pauline Kael’s or David Thomson’s  review collections our film bibles, readers will be poring over this magnificent volume for years to come. An essential, provocative and irresistible tome from two of our greatest critics.”—Megan Abbott, best-selling author of The Fever and You Will Know Me

Alan Sepinwall has been writing about television for close to twenty years. Formerly a TV critic for Newark’s Star-Ledger (Tony Soprano’s hometown paper), he currently writes the popular blog What's Alan Watching? on he is the author of The Revolution was Televised: The Cops, Crooks, Slingers and Slayers Who Changed TV Drama Forever (Touchstones, 2012) which the New York Times’ Michiko Kakutani named one of her 10 Favorite Books of 2012. 

Jon Hamm is an American actor, director, and television producer best known for his nuanced portrayal of the high-powered, philandering advertising executive Don Draper on the AMC's dramatic series Mad Men. His work has earned him numerous accolades, including a Golden Globe Award, Television Critics Association Award and a Critics’ Choice Television Award, as well as multiple Emmy and Screen Actors Guild nominations.


Event date: 
Thursday, January 12, 2017 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
1818 N Vermont Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027
TV (the Book): Two Experts Pick the Greatest American Shows of All Time Cover Image
ISBN: 9781455588190
Availability: Not in stock. Available To Order.
Published: Grand Central Publishing - September 6th, 2016

The Revolution Was Televised: The Cops, Crooks, Slingers, and Slayers Who Changed TV Drama Forever Cover Image
ISBN: 9781476739670
Availability: Not in stock. Available To Order.
Published: Touchstone Books - May 21st, 2013