Tuesday, December 28, 2010

End-Of-Year: Favorite 2010 TV Shows

Couple of days ago, I talked about my favorite actors/performances. Now it's time to focus on the TV shows in 2010 that entertained me. First though quick honorable mention to Dollhouse which had its last few episodes at the beginning of the year, ending, IMO, on a high.

With that said, I present my Top 30 Shows of 2010...

30. Greek - Still fun and entertaining as ever. Totally enjoyed what the writers did to the Cappie/Casey/Evan triangle. Looking forward to its final season next year.

29. United States of Tara - Toni Collette is still superb, but most of the storylines not relating to Marshall dealing with his identity fell a bit flat to me.

28. Supernatural - Really good episodes here and there, but last season's finale was anti-climactic and the limited use of Castiel's character this season was a wasted opportunity.

27. Chuck - Show seems to be struggling with what sort of direction to go in, but for the most part, I'm still enjoying it. A little less Buy More and a bit more Ellie/Awesome in the future PLEASE.

26. The Walking Dead - Good, strong start for this new hit on AMC. Love the slow, deliberate pace they seem to be taking and I'm most definitely intrigued for what's to come.

25. True Blood - I applaud them for upping THE GAY this season as well as forcing all of their male cast to be half-naked most of the time. Plot-wise, I couldn't tell you what happened on the show though.

24. 24 - I'm being cute ranking this #24, but whatever! The show was quite consistent (minus anything to do with Freddie Prince Jr. and Katee Sackhoff). Thrillingly intense last few hours with the end making me cry. Going to miss it.

23. So You Think You Can Dance - Weird, but ultimately successful season. The All-Stars were a bit unnecessary until they weren't when all the girls got kicked off early. Plus THUMBS UP for the slew of guy-guy performances!

22. Party Down - Missed Jane Lynch, but Megan Mullally found her footing as the season progressed. Loved a few of the episodes and will miss this gang a bunch. R.I.P. show.

21. Ugly Betty - Unfortunately the show was canceled. Fortunately they had time to craft some of their strongest episodes in years letting the show end on top. Props to the accelerated, but nicely handled Justin coming out storyline.

20. V - My love for Morena Baccarin and Elizabeth Mitchell got me through some rough spots, but I really am loving the show by itself now. Lisa slowing developing human feelings, Joshua kicking ass... it all makes me happy.

19. White Collar - Matthew Bomer is ridiculously pretty. But the show works with or without the lead's unnatural beauty. Love the easy way the ensemble works with one another without making it all hokey.

18. Dexter - Not sure they could've followed up last season's amazing-ness, but they definitely tried! All of the Lumen/Jordan stuff were aces and really enjoyable. I could take or leave everything else, though Michael C. Hall delivers yet again as the title character. Now what?

17. Glee - Consistency and subtlety are not words you'll ever find someone use to describe this show. But when it hit its highs, it's one of the more amazing things on TV these days. Props to Colfer re: bullying storyline as well as the Emmy-winning Joss Whedon/NPH episode!

16. Big Bang Theory - Parsons is as wonderful as ever and the influx of female characters really upped my enjoyment of the show. Kaley Cuoco is still the glue that holds the show together IMO.

15. Parks & Recreation - Pretty much saw EVERY EPISODE of this show this past month. I really didn't know what I was missing. Hilarious characters put into hilarious situations. What else can you ask for?

14. Cougar Town - What I said for Parks & Rec, pretty much the same for this show except its ensemble is a tad more well-rounded and the show itself is a bit more cartoony, which I actually like.

13. Castle - The end of last season provided such a creative high for the show and the beginning of this season just continued that momentum with barely a clunker of an episode to speak of.

12. How I Met Your Mother - A few might say the show has seen better days, but while it's not creatively at its peak now, I've gotten to the level of comfort with these characters that I can't bear the thought of not watching them. And when the episodes are good, they are DAMN GOOD. Yay for their 100th episode milestone!

11. The Amazing Race - Another year and not one, but two wonderful seasons of this show. Both seasons saw worthy strategic winners, a fun/audience-favorite runner-up, and a viled team come in third place. Also WOO Nat/Kat for finally being the first all-female team to win the show!

And now here is my top ten list...

10. Misfits - This show, a mix between Skins and Heroes, was pretty much love-in-first-sight for me. It's not perfect and in fact is rather quite crude and irreverent, but those are parts of its charm. Those and the really talented ensemble just ground the more fantastical elements of this hidden gem. I'm so glad I checked this out.

9. Modern Family - My favorite comedy of last year continued its amazing run at consistently delivering wonderful episodes featuring its immensely talented ensemble this year. For me, there's just no weak link here even if other actors are more consistent week in, week out.

8. Sherlock - Even though it was only three episodes, those three episodes were as brilliant and epic as you can get. Written by storyteller extraordinaire, Steven Moffat, this show seamlessly adapted the character of Sherlock Holmes for our time in no small part thanks as well to the magnificent work by Benedict Cumberbatch. This is a must-watch for everyone.

7. Mad Men - A lot of things happened this season, but nothing as great as seeing Jon Hamm and Elisabeth Moss holding a master class in acting in almost every single episode. The show itself was reinvigorated by the big changes that happened at the end of last season, but man, who could've predicted such a strong season?

6. Being Human - I fell head over heels with this show last year and this year, in its second season, it somehow topped itself delivering darker stories and really putting the characters through an emotional and psychological wringer that was heaven to watch on screen. The finale was unforgettable as was the last shot. I'm dying to see what they do next. Though I'm a bit more wary about the planned American version.

5. The Good Wife - It already won my best ensemble award so it definitely has a strong cast. But the show succeeds, because that cast is playing such interesting and highly developed characters. Unlike most lawyer shows, this show is not just a case-of-the-week. The personal stuff gets just as much screen time and focus than the lawyering stuff, in fact probably even more so. All of that and a lead actress as engaging as Julianna Marguilies and you have a winning formula.

4. Doctor Who - When David Tennant's reign ended, I was apprehensive, but open-minded especially since new show-runner Steven Moffat is a damn genius. I shouldn't have wondered. The fifth season blew my expectations out of the water as well as new Doctor played by Matt Smith. While Smith is younger than Tennant, he sometimes comes across as older. His chemistry with new companion Karen Gillan is palpable and can I get an AMEN for finally having a regular male companion (RORY!!!). I also really loved the plot arc with the Silence, the Crack, the Pandorica, River, etc. Moffat and co. also delivered a high quality timey wimey Christmas episode. What can't they do?

3. Community - It was in the spring this past year when I realized how addicted I had become to this show. After laughing my ass off watching a new episode, I immediately wanted to see next week's episode and during the summer months, it was the one show I was aching to come back. And really, why not? The cast has incredible chemistry with one another and are up for whatever crazy thing the show asks of them. And it asks a lot since the show is never afraid to experiment and tinker weekly. One needn't look further than the most recent Christmas episode where the whole episode was done in stop-motion.

2. Fringe - Last year when I realized I loved the show when it was less about the freak-of-the-week and more about the big arc with the alternate universe, etc. So when the show became ALL ABOUT THE ARC this show suddenly was must-see-TV for me. Not only that, but it enabled most of the actors to stretch themselves playing two versions of their characters and no other actor took advantage of this than Anna Torv whose work this past year I CANNOT stop praising. With this arc coming to a close, however, I'm a bit worried where the show is going to go now, but hopefully the creative high they've experienced will continue.

1. Lost - I already consider this show my favorite of the decade, so it was a no-brainer for me to claim it the best of 2010 with its heartbreaking, wonderful, and lovely final season. Unlike a few people, I was quite satisfied with the series finale even if it under-served the island mythology. I've said from the first season, it's ALL ABOUT the characters for me and holy crap did we get that and then some this season. The flash sideways were both maddening and enjoyable nicely highlighting some of the series' best moments/relationships. I could probably say more, but just... I love it, okay? Do you need anything else?

Final Note: It's insane that there are four British shows in my top 10. I knew I was an Anglophile, but damn. My top 30 shows came from 13 different networks including PBS which aired Sherlock, but excluding Misfits which hasn't had an American premiere yet. ABC was on top with 6 shows, followed by FOX and CBS tieing with 4 shows. It's also worth noting that no new show offered by the big four networks made it into my list. That's... sad.


Here are the rest of the shows that I watched and somewhat enjoyed, but didn't rank: Raising Hope, The Event, Hawaii Five-0, 30 Rock, Grey's Anatomy, American Idol, Skins, Weeds, Covert Affairs, Drop Dead Diva, Pretty Little Liars, Brothers & Sisters

Shows I've stopped watching for one reason or another: Caprica, The Mentalist, Desperate Housewives, Private Practice, Gossip Girl, Stargate: Universe, No Ordinary Family, Project Runway

Just a few dishonorable mentions: Running Wilde, Undercovers, Outsourced, My Generation, Happy Town, Big Brother, the viewers of Lone Star and The Whole Truth

1 comment:

  1. WOW you watch a lot of TV, man. I can barely name five shows I like! I only watch 3 shows this season, well 2 really as I only watch Chuck for Timothy Dalton (if only they put more of him!) but I agree the Buy More jokes are getting lame.

    I really enjoy Hawaii Five-O (and not just for Alex O'Loughlin, he..he..) and The Event has impressed me thus far.

    Ha..ha.. Matthew Bomer is ridiculously good looking it's criminal. Not that enthused about the show though.


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