Some TV shows are tailor-made for drinking games -- alcohol can sometimes be the only way to make it through episodes when your favorite show is phoning it in, or it's wallowing in its own clichés. Invite friends over for these specialized drinking games for a few of your favorites -- get your shot glasses ready, and definitely don't plan on driving or operating any heavy machinery after playing.

'Empire' (2015 - )

Everyone loves watching the music-mogul Lyon family on "Empire" -- the weekly drama between Cookie and Lucious is almost as good as the rap, hip-hop, and soul soundtrack the show delivers. Naturally, songwriting plays a big part in the stories, but what's amazing is each character's ability to write fully produced songs on the spot. Each episode, someone will have an idea for a new song, or be challenged to deliver a new rap, and inevitably, one of the Lyons will step up to deliver a radio-ready track without blinking. No demos, no drafts -- they get behind the mic, and the song comes out perfectly the first time. That's worth drinking to.

How to play: Drink once every time a character writes a new song that's finished the first time they play it. Drink twice each time a studio musician on the show magically knows how to accompany the new song.

'Downton Abbey' (2010 - 2015)

Audiences across the globe have reveled in the drama and historical fiction of "Downton Abbey," the first show on PBS to gain mainstream popularity in years. But the stilted language, stiff costumes, and British class struggles of "Downton" aren't for everyone -- so for those who are not completely sold on the period piece, drinking makes the whole experience a little easier to swallow.

How to play: Drink every time there's an uncomfortable silence. (Please note: Each episode may require multiple trips to the liquor store.)

'Supergirl' (2015 - )

"Supergirl" holds its own amid some stiff competition on the comic-book show landscape -- star Melissa Benoist has truly risen to the challenge of being the only female super-powered lead on prime-time TV. That said, the show loves to constantly remind viewers that she's Superman's cousin -- as though the giant "S" on her chest wasn't enough of a hint -- to the point that it gets distracting when the characters are constantly discussing a hero who isn't there. So a drinking game was inevitable, right?

How to play: Drink once every time someone refers to the fact that Superman is Kara's cousin. Drink twice whenever Superman is mentioned directly (calling him Clark or Kal-El counts).

'Arrow' (2012 - )

The original staple of the DC television universe, "Arrow" has grown into an action soap opera with more love stories than a telenovela. Between Oliver Queen, his ex-girlfriend, his other ex-girlfriend (who's also the sister of his first ex-girlfriend), his assistant-turned-girlfriend, and the mother of his illegitimate child, there's always fresh heartbreak. It's enough to drive fans to drink.

How to play: Drink every time someone cries on "Arrow." Caution: For safety reasons, it may be better to not watch an entire episode at once when playing.

'The Big Bang Theory' (2007 - )

After nine seasons, "The Big Bang Theory" is still a ratings juggernaut, despite the fact that it continues to mine the same territory of jokes year after year. We're not knocking it: Predictable sitcoms can be TV comfort food. Or, in this case, comfort drink.

How to play: Drink once every time one of the following things happens -- Penny is referred to as being promiscuous; Leonard makes a joke about his own sexual insecurities; Raj is teased for being of Indian descent; Sheldon insults someone.