Special Report

The Most Popular TV Doctors of All Time

Audiences have been looking forward to weekly house calls with top doctors ever since medical dramas started being featured in primetime programming several decades ago. Big names like Meredith Grey or Gregory House easily come to mind, but there are other fictional physicians that have made an impact on TV.

To compile a list of the most popular TV doctors, 24/7 Tempo developed an index based on Wikipedia search activity and audience reviews from the Internet Movie Database.

Memorable doctors from medical dramas to comedies, sci-fi shows, and thrillers have graced the small screen over the past 50 years. The most favorite appear to be from more recent shows. Eight of the 10 most beloved doctors are from shows that have debuted after 2000 and nine have lasted at least seven seasons.

TV doctors have evolved just as the types of shows they are part of have. Popular doctors from earlier shows are compassionate, competent, and funny. Though in many cases doctors characters still have these attributes, they also often have more complex personalities, such as the drug addicted but highly intelligent Dr. House.

The doctors on this list are part of different show genres from dramas, like “ER,” that have had a cultural impact to comedies, like “Scrubs,” that have provided relief in tough times. (These are the best comedies available to stream right now.)

Click here for the most popular TV doctors

Methodology

To determine the most popular TV doctors, 24/7 Tempo developed an index based on Wikipedia search activity and audience reviews from the Internet Movie Database. Daily average Wikipedia pageviews from Dec. 29, 2018 to Dec. 29, 2021 for each television doctor were included in the index at double weight. Data on the average IMDb user rating for the show each television doctor is primarily featured in was gathered December 2021 and was included in the index at full weight. Data on the number of audience votes, dates of series runs, and cast information also came from IMDb.

25. Dr. Bunsen Honeydew
> Show: The Muppet Show (1976-1981)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 152
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.4/10 (23,805 votes)
> Portrayed by: Dave Goelz

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Source: Courtesy of Fox Network

24. Zoidberg
> Show: Futurama (1999-2013)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 201
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.4/10 (223,770 votes)
> Portrayed by: Billy West

Source: Courtesy of American Broadcasting Company

23. Perry Cox
> Show: Scrubs (2001-2010)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 244
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.3/10 (246,408 votes)
> Portrayed by: John C. McGinley

Source: Courtesy of American Broadcasting Company

22. J.D.
> Show: Scrubs (2001-2010)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 253
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.3/10 (246,408 votes)
> Portrayed by: Zach Braff

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Source: Courtesy of National Broadcasting Company
Source: Courtesy of National Broadcasting Company

21. Mark Greene
> Show: ER (1994-2009)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 458
> IMDb user rating for show: 7.8/10 (56,027 votes)
> Portrayed by: Anthony Edwards

Source: Courtesy of Viacom

20. Becker
> Show: Becker (1998-2004)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 674
> IMDb user rating for show: 7.2/10 (12,600 votes)
> Portrayed by: Ted Danson

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19. Dr. Nick Riviera
> Show: The Simpsons (1989-Present)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 189
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.6/10 (385,634 votes)
> Portrayed by: Hank Azaria

Source: Courtesy of Home Box Office

18. Dr. Bruce Cusamano
> Show: The Sopranos (1999-2007)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 4
> IMDb user rating for show: 9.2/10 (350,276 votes)
> Portrayed by: Robert LuPone

Source: Courtesy of Home Box Office

17. Dr. Jennifer Melfi
> Show: The Sopranos (1999-2007)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 38
> IMDb user rating for show: 9.2/10 (350,276 votes)
> Portrayed by: Lorraine Bracco

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Source: Courtesy of American Broadcasting Company

16. Dr. Doogie Howser
> Show: Doogie Howser, M.D. (1989-1993)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 1,009
> IMDb user rating for show: 6.5/10 (8,551 votes)
> Portrayed by: Neil Patrick Harris

Source: Courtesy of National Broadcasting Company

15. John Carter
> Show: ER (1994-2009)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 548
> IMDb user rating for show: 7.8/10 (56,027 votes)
> Portrayed by: Noah Wyle

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Source: Courtesy of Fox Network

14. Martha Masters
> Show: House (2004-2012)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 252
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.7/10 (436,819 votes)
> Portrayed by: Amber Tamblyn

Source: Courtesy of CBS

13. Dr. Michaela Quinn
> Show: Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman (1993-1998)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 1,009
> IMDb user rating for show: 6.8/10 (11,368 votes)
> Portrayed by: Jane Seymour

Source: Courtesy of National Broadcasting Company

12. Leonard McCoy
> Show: Star Trek (1966-1969)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 533
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.3/10 (78,834 votes)
> Portrayed by: DeForest Kelley

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Source: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures

11. Beverly Crusher
> Show: Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987-1994)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 464
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.6/10 (111,427 votes)
> Portrayed by: Gates McFadden

Source: Courtesy of Fox Network

10. Robert Chase
> Show: House (2004-2012)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 467
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.7/10 (436,819 votes)
> Portrayed by: Jesse Spencer

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Source: Courtesy of Netflix

9. Ali Mills
> Show: Cobra Kai (2018-Present)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 653
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.6/10 (130,286 votes)
> Portrayed by: Elisabeth Shue

Source: Courtesy of Fox Network

8. Dr. Dana Scully
> Show: The X-Files (1993-2018)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 686
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.6/10 (211,969 votes)
> Portrayed by: Gillian Anderson

Source: Courtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

7. Dr. Benjamin “Hawkeye” Pierce
> Show: M*A*S*H (1972-1983)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 972
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.4/10 (53,992 votes)
> Portrayed by: Alan Alda

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Source: Courtesy of HBO Max

6. Dr. Watson
> Show: Sherlock (2010-2017)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 731
> IMDb user rating for show: 9.1/10 (862,926 votes)
> Portrayed by: Martin Freeman

Source: Courtesy of Fox Network

5. Dr. Gregory House
> Show: House (2004-2012)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 1,217
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.7/10 (436,819 votes)
> Portrayed by: Hugh Laurie

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Source: Courtesy of American Broadcasting Company

4. Izzie Stevens
> Show: Grey’s Anatomy (2005-Present)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 2,220
> IMDb user rating for show: 7.5/10 (280,793 votes)
> Portrayed by: Katherine Heigl

Source: Courtesy of American Broadcasting Company

3. Derek Shepherd
> Show: Grey’s Anatomy (2005-Present)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 2,349
> IMDb user rating for show: 7.5/10 (280,793 votes)
> Portrayed by: Patrick Dempsey

Source: Courtesy of Apple TV+

2. Doc Martin
> Show: Doc Martin (2004-2022)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 2,104
> IMDb user rating for show: 8.3/10 (14,479 votes)
> Portrayed by: Martin Clunes

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Source: Courtesy of American Broadcasting Company

1. Meredith Grey
> Show: Grey’s Anatomy (2005-Present)
> Daily avg. Wikipedia pageviews: 3,126
> IMDb user rating for show: 7.5/10 (280,793 votes)
> Portrayed by: Ellen Pompeo

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