The United States of TV Infographic

America according to its TV shows

America according to its TV shows

Back in 2011, the Economist published a map of the US matching each state with a national economy of similar size. It threw up some eyeopening similarities – Mississippi with Bangladesh, Texas with Russia, California with Italy – with the overall result of making the States seem like a much more familiar and approachable place. But if you were travelling to the US for the first time, as a travel guide this approach has its limitations. Thinking that Nevada is just like Peru, or that Minnesota celebrates the same cultural traditions as Thailand is only going to lead to confusion (and possibly a jail sentence). But substitute dry financial information with the rich sociological material of TV shows and the result is way more helpful.

And from this you can easily derive this handy list of Top Travel Tips:

1) The Following are everywhere

2) If you want to buy drugs, Maryland and New Mexico should be on your itinerary. If you want a beer, head for Massachussets.

3) Florida is best avoided.

4) So is Georgia.

5) And Louisiana.

6) Timothy Olyphant once kept the peace in North Dakota, but now fights crime in Kentucky. His Dad lives in Nevada and his Grandad in Wyoming.

7) And his Great-grandad lives in Arizona.

8) Anywhere north of Illinois is a dramatic dead zone.

9) Mystical creatures prefer temperate wooded environments, as do surreal murder mysteries.

10) Taylor Swift’s mother lives in Tennessee.

11) California has much more in common with Ohio, Indiana and Pennsylvania than you would think.

12) As do Illinois and New Jersey.

13) Basketball is the main export of North Carolina.

14) Utah and Colorado are weird.

15) Watch out for low flying objects in Kentucky.

16) Elementary is the best show based in New York.

17) No one shot JR. He moved to Washington DC and took up politics.


Arizona – The High Chapparal

California – Community

Colorado – South Park

Florida – Dexter

Georgia – The Walking Dead

Illinois – Boss

Indiana – Parks and Recreation

Kansas – Smallville

Kentucky – Justified

Louisiana – True Blood

Maine – Once Upon A Time

Maryland – The Wire

Massachussets – Cheers

Nevada – Vegas

New Jersey – The Sopranos

New Mexico – Breaking Bad

New York – Elementary

North Carolina – One Tree Hill

Ohio – Glee

Oregon – Grimm

Pennsylvania – The Office

South Dakota – Deadwood

Tennessee – Nashville

Texas – Dallas

Utah – Big Love

Virginia – House of Cards (OK I know Washington DC isn’t strictly part of any US state, but catch me a break here)

Washington – Twin Peaks

Wyoming – Longmire

As for the rest – The Following. The Following is everywhere…

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