Whether it’s a battle against the flesh-eating undead or the arrival of an alien master race, audiences have always had an undeniable fascination with the apocalypse. The exploration of mankind’s reaction to the end of days and the quest for survival in a hopelessly dystopian future is a remarkably compelling premise. Shows Like The 100 in particular pack an added punch by tackling the boundaries of moral compromise and the choices made in uncertain, dangerous times.
The 100 follows a group of juvenile prisoners who have been sent back to Earth from a space habitat after a devastating nuclear apocalypse. The space vessel is failing and the teens are tasked with a last ditch attempt to determine whether the planet is habitable again.
If you enjoyed the suspense set amid the morally complex stakes and intricate world-building of the series, here are 9 more post-apocalyptic dystopian survival Shows Like The 100.
SHOWS LIKE THE 100
The Walking Dead
Deputy sheriff Rick Grimes wakes up from a coma to discover the city around him has been devastated by a worldwide zombie apocalypse. As he searches for his wife and son, he eventually becomes the leader of a group of survivors. Together, they must fight to stay alive and defend themselves against the undead.
Adapted from a comic book series, The Walking Dead is arguably one of the best post-apocalyptic shows on television. Currently in its seventh season, the series has received rave reviews for its intelligent writing and suspense-laden drama. The tension is grueling and the action superbly satisfying in all its bloody goriness. The series has been nominated several awards including a Golden Globe, and a companion series Fear of the Walking Dead debuted in 2015. Fans of shows like The 100 will no doubt delight in this one.
Set five hundred years in the future, a new planetary system is in effect after mankind has abandoned Earth. The series follows a small renegade crew aboard a spacecraft as they try to survive on the fringes of society in any way they can. Flying between border planets, they must evade the warring factions as well as authority agents out to get them.
Despite a positive reception and winning multiple awards, Firefly was cancelled after just 11 episodes aired, leaving fans baffled and infuriated. However, its premature cancellation seemed to fuel its legacy and the series achieved cult status. It ranked #25 on TV Guide’s Top Cult Shows Ever and its success led to the production of a critically acclaimed film sequel, Serenity. This one is definitely worth a watch in our list of shows like The 100.
It is the year 2046 and Earth has been radically transformed after a prolonged war with an alien race. The series follow Joshua Nolan and his adopted alien daughter Irisa as they settle into a new town, Defiance – a city-state where humans and extraterrestrials coexist. Events that will threaten the fragile peace in this border town soon unfold.
The series, which lasted for three seasons, has been acknowledged by critics for its increasingly complex world-building and the strength of its production design. Breathtaking landscapes and impressively rendered monsters are bolstered by compelling performances from strong cast. If you enjoy shows like The 100, Defiance should be right up your alley.
Six months after a catastrophic alien invasion that left most of the world incapacitated, survivors have banded together outside of major cities in an effort to fight back. A bookish history professor, Tom Mason, becomes commander of a regiment of citizen soldiers and he must protect the people as they devise an insurgency campaign against the alien invaders.
The series, which ran for five seasons, started out shaky but soon grew into its own as it made a commendable effort to develop the characters, offering depth in the derivative premise of man versus aliens. First-rate visual effects are buoyed by energetic performances from the cast. In our list of shows like The 100, Falling Skies is a well-executed rendition of a tried-and-tested formula, offering the best guilty pleasure choice in the realm of post-apocalyptic dystopian survival.
The series centers on the residents of the fictional city of Jericho in Kansas who witness a mushroom cloud over nearby Denver, Colorado. They soon find out that a coordinated nuclear attack has destroyed 23 major American cities. The resulting loss of electricity and communication lines cut them off from the rest of the country as they struggle to find answers and fight to survive.
A sleeper cult hit, Jericho was cancelled after its first season due to poor ratings before a fan campaign persuaded the network to bring the show back for a second season. The storylines in the show were subsequently continued through a comic book series overseen by the original television series’ writing staff. In our list of shows like The 100, Jericho will certainly go down as the one that ended too soon.
The Last Ship
The series opens as the crew of a US Navy Destroyer is returning from a four month long mission to the Arctic where they were escorting two scientists who were searching for the cure to a deadly virus. After reinstating communication channels, the crew realizes that the virus has wiped out most of the world’s population since the ship embarked and it is now up to them to stop the virus and save humanity.
Based on the 1988 novel of the same name, the series has been praised for its exciting visuals, courtesy of executive producer Michael Bay. Expect Bay’s trademark fast-paced action sequences and a liberal sprinkle of thrilling explosion scenes. If you are looking for the tension of an apocalyptic survival plot coupled with a big-budget movie feel, this is your pick in our list of shows like The 100.
Initially set in 2149, the series depicts the planet’s decline under the strain of overpopulation and hyper-pollution. When scientists discover a temporal rift, the Shannon family is one of those selected to be transported back 85 million years into prehistoric times to build a new civilization. Danger exists at every turn as the Shannons discover betrayal and conflict both within and beyond the new colony.
Produced by Steven Spielberg, the short-lived series was unfortunately cancelled after only one season. Nonetheless, it garnered favorable reviews from critics who praised the cinematic special effects and promising premise. Terra Nova should appeal to those looking for shows like The 100 with a side of hungry dinosaurs.
Inspired by the real-life Project Orion, the show sets ups an alternate version of reality in which a massive, self-sustaining spaceship launched in the 1960s is currently halfway into its 100-year journey to colonize a new planet and save humanity from extinction. The mysterious murder of a young woman occurs onboard, sparking off a series of events that lead the crew to begin questioning the true nature of their mission.
The six-episode miniseries kicks off with an ambitious premise that puts a new spin on space drama. Dystopian themes are interwoven with coming-of-age stories and an exploration of social Darwinism. With just a handful of episodes, Ascension is the perfect pick for a weekend binge session if you’re looking for shows like The 100.
The series opens 15 years after a worldwide permanent power blackout. Although people have adapted to a world without electricity, the ensuing collapse of the government has led to the rise of militia control. A young woman’s life takes a dramatic turn after her father is killed by the local militia and her brother captured. She sets off on a journey for answers from the past that may be the hope to reclaiming their future.
Shows like The 100 offer food for thought through the difficult choices that must be made in new world that plays by a different set of rules and Revolution does not disappoint on that front. It is a bold, exciting adventure set against a backdrop reminiscent of a western epic with great action sequences to boot.