Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Best TV of 2012

2012 is coming to an end, which means it's time for the annual Best TV of the Year lists.

I will begin my list explaining what shows you will find on most other critic's lists, but not mine.

Girls (HBO)

I watched the first three. I don't get the hype. And don't tell me it's because I'm too old and can't appreciate what's going on here. I don't buy that. If you say it's because I have two teenage daughters, that I might buy.

Louie (FX)

I'm starting to come around a bit on Louie. I blew through Season One on Netflix, and liked Travel Day/South, Heckler/Cop Movie, Bully and God a lot. Didn't love the other nine. I will give Season Two a go now.

American Horror Story (FX)

I just haven't watched it. Seems weird for the sake of being weird. I'll get there.


The Newsroom (HBO)

Almost cracked my top ten. I love Sorkin, and can ignore his sexism for the most part. Olivia Munn was  a find, and Jeff Daniels performance is Emmy worthy. Don't know what happened to Sam Waterston...hope he's okay.

Life's Too Short (HBO)

Inconsistent, but Warwick Davis makes me laugh, and the scene with Liam Neeson was the funniest thing on television this year.

Veep (HBO)

Julia and crew are close, but not there yet. Can't wait for Season Two.

Modern Family (ABC)

Still makes me laugh, and I always find it touching. It's good, and can be great at times, but needs to get back to its Season One brilliance. I don't like the new Lilly. 

The Good Wife (CBS)

That Kalinda storyline is awful and this show has slipped, but it's still solid television (especially for a network program).


11. Sons of Anarchy (FX)

One day, I will sit down with Kurt Sutter and break down this show. Great plot twists, lots of deaths and action, and plenty of struggle in Charming. Kurt makes you care about a motorcycle club - a lot.  He turned my top ten list into a top eleven.

10.  Dexter (SHOWTIME)

Honestly, I'd never thought this show would ever be in my Top Ten again.  The Lithgow season will never be topped, but they pulled off the Deb/Dex story and made me care about murder in Miami once again. The supporting players were used well this season, and Yvonne Strahovski looks fantastic (in some scenes).

9.  Justified (FX)

Not sure why this show stays under everyone's radar. Olyphant leads the excellent acting ensemble. Goggins is a pleasure to watch. And this edgy drama continues to produce every season.

8.  Homeland (SHOWTIME)

Big drop for last season's Emmy winner. The plots are becoming more 24-like, but the acting of Danes, Lewis and Patinkin keep it in the top ten...for now.

7.  Downton Abbey (PBS)

British drama at its best. I put this on for my wife to watch. She fell asleep, and I got caught up in it. Can't wait for Season Three.

6.  Parks & Recreation (NBC)

The only comedy in my top ten, and the only network show to make it as well. NBC doesn't realize what a gem they have here. Consistently funny. It will get cancelled.

5.  Mad Men (AMC)

Solid season for Don Draper and crew. A little too much Zou Bisou Bisou and not enough Roger Sterling for me. 

4.  The Walking Dead (AMC)

Easily its best season - great character development and zombie kills. Carl gets most improved character of the year award. Andrea gets the reverse.

3.  Boardwalk Empire (HBO)

Really hit its stride at the end of the season. Thank you, Bobby Cannavale. Less and less Margaret means a better and better show. Buscemi is fantastic. And thank you, Terence Winter, for providing ANSWERS. 

2.  Game of Thrones (HBO)

I'm all in on this epic. Season Two took us deeper into King's Landing and beyond the wall. I've read the books so I know what's coming in Season Three. You ain't seen NOTHIN' yet.

1.  Breaking Bad (AMC)

A clinic on TV drama. I know it was only 8 episodes, but every character (especially Mike) was on top of his or her game. I've never watched a show so tensely. Can't wait for Hank to get out of that bathroom.

P.S. If you're looking for Sherlock here, I thought it aired in 2011. Otherwise, it would be in my top three, easily.


  1. I realize the USA shows get a bad rap for a couple of reasons. Lets face it, 'Royal Pains' is very light and fluffy, I usually watch that while trying to get to sleep.

    But I would like to make a case for 'Suits'. The first season was very good, and I feel the second season took it to a whole new level.

    Why is it I have not heard this show talked about on the show?

  2. I pretty much agree with your list. I have not started Downton Abbey yet so I cannot judge you on that one. I am not a big fan of any NBC sitcoms but Amy Poehler is very good. I am also a TV junkie who watches a LOT of TV. When I was a kid that was pretty much all I did. For the past 12 years it also pretty much all I do (other than work, of course). During my 20's I partied a lot and got away from it. I keep track of the overnights and final ratings each day, even during the summer! I love TV and would love to someday actually get paid to do it like you do. By the way I am about the same age as you, I just turned 40!