TV Shows Set in All 50 States Part One: From The OC to Cougar Town


When you are sitting on the couch binge-watching your favorite television shows, do you ever wonder where the show is set? Some series like Seinfeld (set in New York) or Modern Family (set in California) are pretty obvious and at times play a pivotal role in the episode. Sometimes you may have watched a television series for years and had no idea what city or even state that the show takes place. Did you know that the Summer series Under the Dome was set in Maine?

I was a fan of the show for all three seasons and never even knew that. We at TV Overmind decided to find a TV show set in each of our 50 states. Since that is a lot of information for our faithful readers to take in, we decided to break this up into five different articles over the course of five weeks. First up, Alabama through Georgia. Hopefully you will be entertained by what we found out and get a Geography lesson all at the same time.

Alabama – Any Day Now, Lifetime (1998-2002)

Both Annie Potts and Lorraine Toussaint have been a staple on television for several years. The two joined forces in the late 90’s to star on this Lifetime drama. The show takes place in Birmingham, Alabama and is set in two different time periods: the 1960’s when the girls were growing up and the 1990’s when the two reconnected. The series focused on many hot topics including racism and homosexuality. It lasted for 4 seasons and even scored an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Costumes for a Series.

Alaska – Men in Trees, ABC (2006-2008)

You may have forgotten about this Anne Heche comedy drama that aired on the alphabet network in the mid-2ooo’s. The series focused on Marin Frist looking for love in all the wrong places in the fictional Alaskan city called Elmo. The network waited to air five episodes of season one during the show’s second season, which may have been a good idea since the Writer’s Strike would halt production of the second and final season of the series.

Arizona – The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp, ABC (1955-1961)

Many series that were based in Arizona aired on television in the 50’s and 60’s and would be westerns set in the late 1800’s or early 1900’s. One of those series is this one that is loosely based on the life of frontier marshal Wyatt Earp. The series was the first of its kind to be strictly targeted towards an adult audience and was produced by the then famous Desilu Productions.

Arkansas – Evening Shade, CBS (1990-1994)

Burt Reynolds starred as Wood Newton a professional football player who had to leave the profession after an injury. He would relocate his family to the small town Evening Shade located in Arkansas, where he took the job as the high school’s football coach. The show also starred Marilu Henner as Wood’s successful wife Ava. The series delivered strong ratings all four seasons it remained on air.

California – The OC, FOX (2003-2007)

There are countless series that are set in California including Saved by the Bell and Sons of Anarchy. One of the more popular series was the teen primetime soap The OC. The series debuted in the Summer of 2003 and quickly became one of the hottest new series on the network and was how Ben McKenzie, Rachel Bilson, and Adam Brody all became household names. Star Mischa Barton would vacate the series at the end of season three and the series would conclude the following season.

Colorado – Community, NBC (2009-2014) and Yahoo! (2015)

You would think that someone should only be attending community college for four years. However, the crew that attended Greendale Community College were still taking classes after six years. Though the series experienced low ratings for its entire run, the comedy starring Joel McHale, Alison Brie, and Donald Glover had a cult following. The tagline “six seasons and a movie” was spoken by many characters throughout the series’ run and a film adaptation is supposedly in the works.

Connecticut – Who’s the Boss, ABC (1984-1992)

This series is one of the more memorable situation comedies that aired during this time period. Other popular sitcoms include Full House, Growing Pains, and Family Ties. Tony Danza had just spent five seasons on the comedy Taxi before starring on this series which was watched by over 20 million people during its third season.

Delaware – The Pretender, NBC (1996-2000)

I had a hard time trying to find a series that was set in the small state of Delaware. Thankfully, I came upon this series from the mid-1990’s that starred Michael T. Weiss as Jarod a child prodigy that in his adulthood escapes a secret agency and helps strangers in the real world. After the series was cancelled, two television movies would air on TNT.

Florida – Cougar Town, ABC (2009-2012) and TBS (2013-2015)

Courteney Cox traded in the cold winter nights of New York City on Friends to headline this kooky comedy that took place in the fictional Florida town of Gulfhaven. The title of the show was often poked fun at since the concept of season one (where Cox’s character Jules would date younger men) was changed to focus more on a core group of friends that enjoyed drinking wine. Extremely low ratings for the third season prompted ABC to cancel the series, which was the quickly picked up by TBS.

Georgia – Designing Women, CBS (1986-1993)

This is the second time that Annie Potts is making our list of 50 shows, 50 states. Designing Women is one of the more successful comedies of the 1980’s.  During its seven season on the air, the series attracted an average audience of 13 million viewers. The comedy was plagued with controversy during the fifth season when Delta Burke made allegations of poor filming conditions. She was let go and was replaces by Julia Duffy, who had previously played Stephanie on Newhart. During this time, star Jean Smart would also vacate the series and be replaced by SNL alum Jan Hooks.

Which series on this list is your favorite? Let us know in the comments section below.

 Photo by: TBS

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