5 great TV shows set in great city of Boston

By: Start TV Staff    Posted: October 1, 2021, 3:25PM

It seems that often shows are set on the opposite sides of the country, either in New York or Los Angeles. Despite this, many great television series have broken the mold and made their claim in the great city of Boston. Often overlooked, these Bostonian stories are often genre-defining and deserve recognition.

From crime series to comedy, the city has offered it all over the years. Here are some of the best series based in the great city of Boston:


Rizzoli & Isles (2010 - 2016)

Based on the award-winning crime novels by Tesse Gerritsen, Rizzoli & Isles follows a homicide detective and medical examiner crime-busting duo. One is brash and to the point and the other might enjoy being around dead bodies more than live ones. Together with their clashing personalities and brilliant minds, Detective Jane Rizzoli (Angie Harmon) and Medical Examiner Dr. Maura Isles (Sasha Alexander) work together to catch Boston's most wanted.


Crossing Jordan (2001 - 2007)

Following the sudden death of her mother, gifted forensic pathologist Dr. Jordan Cavanaugh (Jill Hennessy) develops an obsession for solving violent crimes. Working in the Boston Medical Examiner’s Office, she teams up with medical examiners like Dr. Trey Sanders (Mahershala Ali), homicide detectives like Woody Hoyt (Jerry O’Connell) and others, all working in their own way to solve a varied assortment of cases.


Fringe (2008 - 2013)

Created by J.J. Abrams, Fringe follows FBI agent Olivia Dunham (Anna Torv) as she works with mad scientist Walter Bishop (John Noble) and his son Peter Bishop (Joshua Jackson) to explain the unexplained. Together they are a part of a Joint Federal Task Force known as the Fringe Division of the FBI. Together the team handled all manners of strange cases from transhumanist experiments to destructive technological singularities. 


Sabrina, the Teenage Witch (1996 - 2003)

Based on the popular comic, this 90s iteration of Sabrina, the Teenage Witch took place in the fictional Boston suburb of Westbridge, Massachusetts. Discovering she was a witch at the age of 16, Sabrina works to navigate the struggles of high school and developing witch powers. There to help her out is both her aunts who are also witches and the sassy talking cat, Salem.


Ally McBeal (1997 - 2002)

Airing in the late 90s, the series followed Boston lawyer and show namesake, Ally McBeal. Starring Calista Flockhart in the titular role, Ally works for the Cage and Fish law firm while also seeking love and career success. Working alongside her ex-boyfriend and his wife at the same firm does make things a bit complicated in this comedy drama.

Watch Rizzoli & Isles on Start TV


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Angels 1 month ago
you missed a bunch. Spencer for hire, Cheers, Banacek, Family practice, Boston legal, St Elsewhere, I don't think it started there but Leverage. I watched these, I'm sure there are more I
haven't thought of or know about
Linda 4 months ago
Spencer For Hire, with Robert Urich
LaylaSims 5 months ago
They missed a couple of other great Boston shows: Cheers and Boston Legal!
Ray 12 months ago
I watch it every Sunday at 8 p.m C.S.T. 😁
dhabben 14 months ago
It's too bad that Rizzoli and Isles takes place in Boston, but except for a few exterior and cityscape shots, it was filmed in California.
Steve dhabben 8 months ago
Really? I wonder if this information should be surprising at all? Considering the cost of filming on location versus in a studio, filming in California studios makes perfect sense.
Kathy dhabben 6 months ago
Most shows practice that same deception. SVU and the rest of the L&O franchise do the same. They film an occasional scene on location, but it's quite expensive to film that way. They have sets built that certainly LOOK like they are on a NYC street tho! ✌️
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