13 TV Series That Will Make You Appreciate Brotherhood, Ranked

Some of the best television series in the past two decades are shows that highlight the devoted and humorous relationships among family members. Shows like Modern Family, Full House, and much more have offered numerous feel-good moments and are endearing family portraits on the small screen that resulted in the birth of the family drama genre. However, with so many family-centered TV series, only a handful put the spotlight on the special bond between brothers.

There is nothing like it: the unbreakable bonds of brotherhood, especially when portrayed perfectly in a lengthy TV series, such that room is given for each brother to be fleshed out, so the audience can understand their unique personalities and witness the love and banter among them, while empathizing with them in more serious moments. Whether their relationship is central to the plot or simply a key aspect of amazing storytelling, TV series about brothers are always compelling. Even when a show isn’t entirely about the relationship between two or more brothers, it’s the relationship between them that often drives us to watch, root for, and often see ourselves in as we relate to their brotherhood triumphs and defeats.

Across multiple genres, if you desire some on-screen brotherhood sentiments, this list has it all. Without going any further, here are 13 TV series that will make you appreciate brotherhood more and, hopefully, teach you a lesson or two.

13 Vikings

Vikings Episode 5.8 Recap: The Joke Becomes a Massive Fight

Set in the Norse era, Vikings follows the adventure of Ragnar Lothbrok (Travis Fimmel), a farmer from a small village who leads raids and conquests to become the most famous Viking of his time. While the series focuses on Ragnar’s journey and the brutality of ancient Norse culture, a huge aspect of Vikings plot across its six seasons is the ever-shifting dynamic between the six sons of Ragnar: Bjorn, Ivar, Magnus, Sigurd, Hvitserk, and Ubbe, One moment they are drinking ale; the next, they are bitter rivals. Although they are true-born sons of Ragnar, these six young men couldn’t be any more different from one another as they are eager to find their path and make a name for themselves. Nevertheless, when their father is thrown into a pit of venomous snakes by the Aella of Northumbria, the brothers are quick to reunite and form the greatest army the world had ever seen to avenge their beloved father.

Related: Best 90s TV Family Sitcoms Ranked

12 Big Time Rush

big time rush cast

In most cases, the strongest brotherhood in TV series is one in which the male characters are not bonded by blood. Such is the case for the Nickelodeon comedy classic created by Scott Fellows, Big Time Rush. The show sees a group of four teenage boys from Minnesota, Kendall, Logan, Carlos, and James, become brothers as the show progresses on and off the screen. Together as a naive yet talented boy band, they navigate teenage life, first loves, friendship, and family while building a global audience with their sonorous vocals and heartfelt songs. Big Time Rush proves that a small clique of friends could be so much more.

11 Brothers and Sisters

brothers and sisters
American Broadcasting Company

The Walkers are a wealthy family who is generally normal and decent. However, the mysteries and drama of the Walker family only start to surface after the death of their patriarch. The aftermath of Mr Walker’s death compels the siblings to stay strong for one another and their widowed mum. Although the five adult Walker siblings have their respective lives and face challenges in terms of relationships, careers, and mental dilemmas, they are never absent when anyone is in need. Brothers and Sisters illustrates the importance of having siblings to rely on at various exhaustive points of adulting.

10 Stranger Things

will byers jonathan byers

It’s no mystery that Will had looked up to Jonathan in a way since his father abandoned them when they were little. Despite the dark nature of the Stranger Things plot, the brightest moments are when Jonathan is protective of Will. So much so, he constantly puts his life on the line to protect Will from the threats of The Upside Down. The scenes where Jonathan introduces him to The Clash’s “Should I Stay or Should I Go,” and Will confesses his feelings for Mike, while Jonathan watched in the car rearview mirror, and many more have fanbases of their own. From every scene they share, Strange Things‘ Will and Jonathan Byers are an exemplary model for teenage brotherhood.

9 One Tree Hill

One Tree Hill
The WB

One Tree Hill is renowned for its varied spectrum of characters and friendships. Still, the bond that takes the center is one between two half brothers, Nathan Scott (James Lafferty) and Lucas Scott (Chad Michael Murray), in the little North Carolina community of Tree Hill. Both brothers, born and raised in very different backgrounds, start the show as rivals on the high school basketball team and for the same girl, Peyton Sawyer. Their only ties are their love for basketball and their father, Dan Scott (Paul Johansson). But as the show progresses, the two lads are thrown into one another’s life and soon realize they aren’t that different.

8 Two and a Half Men

Two and a Half Men
Warner Bros Television Distribution

When Alan was younger, Charlie was probably not the best brother. We know this because he once hung Alan on a streetlamp, routinely stuffed dog feces in his lunch, and used to shave his eyebrows while Alan was sleeping. In exchange, Alan continued to serve as Charlie’s perpetual doormat. Charlie genuinely did care about Alan, as harsh as that may sound. He gave Alan and Jake a roof over their heads and listened to all their concerns, at least while there was enough alcohol around. After Charlie’s “death,” Two and a Half Men was never the same. Alan would dress up and behave like Charlie when he was grieving in his customarily bizarre manner to express how much he had loved and revered him.

7 Phineas and Ferb

Phineas and Ferb

Phineas’ mother married Ferb’s father in Phineas and Ferb. Since then, the two have been inseparable, participating in several adventures, such as creating a full-scale roller coaster, becoming musicians, constructing a backyard beach, and journeying back in time to meet dinosaurs. The stepbrothers resolve to make every day of their summer vacation enjoyable.

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6 The Suite life of Zack and Cody

Disney Channel

Dylan (Zack Sprouse) and Cole (Cody Sprouse) played these famously problematic twins who resided in the Tipton Hotel in the teen sitcom The Suite Life of Zack and Cody. Thanks to this charming duo, their playful yet vastly different personalities on and behind the cameras were a clear recipe for success, earning this show a sequel titled The Suite Life on Deck. It also set the stage for Hollywood success for the Sprouse twins.

5 Supernatural

Warner Bros. 

Supernatural significantly drew inspiration from the horror and paranormal genre, but its familial theme is never missing. Sam and Dean Winchester, two brothers whose goal is to pursue numerous supernatural creatures from various myths and tales around the world, are the main subjects of the show. Despite being younger than Dean, Sam is the voice of reason, who is known to be a touch more juvenile and mischievous, and is also the one more eager to have just a regular human life.

4 Peaky Blinders

BBC Studios

Another great entry to this list is BBC’s hit drama series, Peaky Blinders, that centers on the business and political dealings of a gangster family known as The Shelbys. From the leading man Thomas Shelby to his wingmen brothers Arthur, John, and Finn, the four brothers share a love for one another that is best seen through their actions. The four brothers are super protective and are ever willing to get violent in defense of one another in the face of any threat.

3 Prison Break

The cast of Prison Break including Wentworth Miller
20th Television 

After Lincoln Burrows is wrongfully arrested and sentenced to execution, his brother Michael Scofield meticulously plans an elaborate heist to bust his brother out of Fox River, a highly secure correctional facility. Considering the pain of incising tattoos of the prison blueprints all over his body and the decision to be a fugitive with his brother, if there were ever an award for best brother on TV, Prison Break‘s Michael Scofield would be a top contender.

2 The Vampire Diaries

damon and stefan

Damon and Stefen Salvatore are two names cemented in the minds of millions of fans within Julie plec’s fantasy universe, The Vampire Diaries. Stefan is nicer and more affectionate than Damon, a typical bad-boy vampire who is assertive and manipulative. The events in their past, namely the circumstances behind their transformation into vampires, and present, such as falling in love with the same girl, initially put a strain on their brotherhood. Still, as they both struggle to protect their town and their friends, that gradually changes as they allow nothing to come between them.

1 The Originals

klaus and elijah in the originals
The CW

“Over the course of my life, I have to come to a conclusion that we are forever bound to those with whom we share blood, now while we may not choose our family, that bond is our greatest strength or our greatest regret”.

The Originals‘ opening monologue sums up the dysfunctional yet wholesome construct of the Mikaleson brothers, Klaus and Elijah, Finn and Kol, and their sisters Rebekah and Freya. The original vampires accurately define what brothers could be to one another. Finn and Kol are mostly the pebbles in the family’s shoes, while Klaus is a raging maniac who looks up to his big brother Elijah as a beam for redemption. Although the Mikaelson brothers are polar opposites, when the need arises against any foe that dares question their supremacy as the apex blood feeders, they stand by each other. Always and forever.