Jump to content
Corvinus85

Rank your 2020 TV shows throughout the year

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

Adding Westworld which I loved even if i thought it was flawed. Excellent world building.

 Westworld Season 3

Sex Education, S2

The Good Place, series finale

Dracula (missed this off my last list somehow. Would rate this higher if it was only a two-parter but the third episode was a steaming pile of... Well anyway I did not enjoy that episode) 

 Locke and Key, season one. Fine I guess, mindlessly entertaining. Pretty shallow plot and characters but passable as something to kill the time

 Grace and Frankie

 The Stranger. Pretty dire, nothing anyone did made any sense, the "shocks" were eye-roll inducing and/or blatantly obvious and the resolution was stupid. 

 

Currently watching Killing Eve, which i think is better than season 2, not as good as season 1. Once i resubscribe to Netflix i want to watch the Last Kingdom S4 and Dead to Me S2

Edited by HelenaExMachina

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  1. Lost in Space Season 2
  2. The English Game
  3. Altered Carbon Season 2
  4. Young Sheldon Season 3
  5. Outlander Season 5
  6. Grey's anatomy Season 16

As for Young Sheldon, I believe this could have been amazing dramedy. As a comedy, I feel there is always something missing. It has its moments but is far from good.

And Outlander... I never understood when people complained about it being "rape show", but I feel they have crossed the line in showing what a terrible world people had lived in. Given the sensitivity of the issue, I won't prolong. Simply put, the season was mediocre at best and the conclusion was, narratively speaking, deja vu. Lower ratings in time when most population is confined to houses is telling a lot.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
On 5/10/2020 at 10:27 PM, Mladen said:
  1. Lost in Space Season 2
  2. The English Game
  3. Altered Carbon Season 2
  4. Young Sheldon Season 3
  5. Outlander Season 5
  6. Grey's anatomy Season 16

As for Young Sheldon, I believe this could have been amazing dramedy. As a comedy, I feel there is always something missing. It has its moments but is far from good.

And Outlander... I never understood when people complained about it being "rape show", but I feel they have crossed the line in showing what a terrible world people had lived in. Given the sensitivity of the issue, I won't prolong. Simply put, the season was mediocre at best and the conclusion was, narratively speaking, deja vu. Lower ratings in time when most population is confined to houses is telling a lot.

I'm just 2 episodes in in season 5 of Outlander, I paused it a few months ago for other shows, and this isn't giving  me too much incentive to catch up - especially since I already think they overused rape as plot point in previous seasons. It's also a bit much that there's always some OTT sadistic villain who keeps coming back amd just won't lleave the family alone.

Edited by Annara Snow

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  1. Mrs America
  2. Lost in Space Season 2
  3. The English Game
  4. Altered Carbon Season 2
  5. Young Sheldon Season 3
  6. Outlander Season 5
  7. Grey's anatomy Season 16
Spoiler

 

And, finally, we came to this ranking. Mrs America was Cate Blanchett's powerhouse and her performance as Phyllis Schlaffley is absolutely fantastic. The cultural war that started those years still resonates today. It is breathtakingly painstaking to watch as each of these women lose a battle. The irony of Schlaffley's work, and this is something Blanchett does not shy from, is that she was so good in revoking E.R.A. and moving things backwards that inadvertently she became her own worst enemy. The show breaks your heart because you know what will happen - the bad guys, with emphasis on guys, will win. And as we say goodbye to each of them, sadly admitting that all their desire and passion failed, there is a ray of sunshine in that composite character of Alice Macray played by amazing Sarah Paulson who ended her performance with memorable exchange with Phyllis:

"You used to feel empowered by me"

"I used to feel scared"

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

It’s been a pretty lackluster year so far. It’s times like these when I really miss Game of Thrones. My list:

1. Ozark 

2. Gangs of London 

3. Harley Quinn Animated Series 

4. Westworld 

5. Locke and Key

6. Better Call Saul

7. The Last Kingdom 

8. Defending Jacob 

 

Edited by Dragon in the North

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

A new addition in red. (

1.  The Plot Against America - David Simon's excellent mini-series based on Philip Roth's alternative history novel about a 1940s USA where a pro-Nazi president was elected. It's done in a really believable way, where the plot feels really realistic and as something that could have easily happened (and still could happen), and it's particularly chilling because things get slowly and gradually worse before people even realize they live in a Nazi country, and the story makes this brand of Nazism very recognizably American rather than a copy of German Nazism. 

2. BoJack Horseman (season 6b) - the show could have continued (it was Netfix's decision to end it with season 6, not the creative team's), but if it had to end, this was probably the best possible ending. Still, if they revived it,  I'd be overjoyed. This is one of my all time favorite shows and certainly one of the best and most unique shows in recent years. I don't know where I'd rank season 6 - certainly above seasons 1 and 2 and below seasons 5 and 4. Probably about the same as season 3. 

3. Harley Quinn (season 1/season 2) - the hiatus for this show didn't last long, season 1 ended a couple of months ago and season 2 started not long after, and is still ongoing This animated R-rated comedy take on the DC universe and Batman's Gotham is one of the funniest  and wittiest shows I've watched in years. The writing, the animation and the voices are all excellent, and all the main characters are somehow incredibly likable. I love the way they made the Joker a complete a-hole and the way they dealt with his and Harley's relationship. If season 2 keeps on being this good, it may even go higher on the list.

4. The Good Place  (season 4b)- unlike BoJack, this show really needed to have a definite ending, and it was one planned by the creative team. Not all of season 4 was great, but the finale was amazing. 

5. Evil season 1- one of the best new shows this season. Big networks have surprised me by featuring some interesting and original shows like this. I already ranked it on the 2019 list, but the last few episodes aired this season and were all excellent, so the show will probably be even higher on the 2020 list. Unless they screw it up with season 2.

6. Prodigal Son season 1- Another pleasant network surprise, it followed the semi-serialized format and combined case-of-the-week crime drama with an overall, far more interesting dysfunctional family drama/thriller involving the man character, profiler Malcolm Bright (an amazing Tom Payne)and his serial killer father in jail (also amazing Michael Sheen), the socialite mother and ambitious reporter sister. When the latter would become the focus of the show, it got much better and more exciting, as in the last few episodes and the explosive finale. However, I'm ranking it slightly below Evil because Evil was far more consistently interesting and entertaining, while Prodigal Son spent too much episodes of cases of the week.

7. The Witcher season 1 - I don't know if it counts since the show was released last year, but it was late last year, so I'm adding it. I wasn't impressed by the first episode, but the show turned out quite enjoyable. It has quite a few flaws, though I wasn't as bothered by the chaotic timeline as most people seemed to. I haven't read the books or played the games (not a gamer!), but most of the stories were interesting, Yennefer is a really memorable character wit ha compelling story, I really like Henry Cavill as Geralt (though I didn't like him as Superman), and I like the fact that - in spite of the misleading Game of Thrones comparisons - the show is a very different brand of epic fantasy: unabashedly sword-and-sorcery without doing the "oh this a political pseudo-period drama for people who don't like fantasy" thing, not grimdark, not male gazey. Season 1 felt like a setup season, but the show has a lot of potential to get much better.

8. Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist season 1 - This show turned out to be quite a surprise, as its premise (a woman gains the power to hear other people sing their true feelings in the form of various popular songs) made it seem like a quirky musical comedy, but it turned out to be a warm musical dramedy, with emphasis on drama, that deals with issues including illness and loss of a parent,. In the time of grimdark and grittiness, it is rare to something that's so non-cynical and full of empathy and faith in humanity, and at the same time modern and diverse. Would be higher if it weren't for the love triangle at the center and the way it was developed in the last few episodes (some things rubbed me the wrong way).

9. Star Trek: Picard season 1 - It is great to see Patrick Stewart back as Picard, and I really liked how the show handled his character and some others well-know Trek characters (particularly Seven of Nine). The new characters were also compelling, particularly Santiago Cabrera's Captain Rios. However, the plot had some issues, especially towards the end, and the finale was predictable in many ways.

10. Emergence season 1 - another good new SciFi show on a network. Unfortunately, since it's on a big network (ABC), its chances of getting renewed are not great, based on that nonsense that are Nielsen ratings. Fingers crossed. If it doesn't get renewed, I guess we can ignore the cliffhanger from the last couple of minutes - and the rest of the finale would be a satisfying ending to the show.

Luckily, I didn't hate anything this year, apart from the pilot for See, which I didn't even bother to continue.

The Last Kingdom will be added when I finish season 4. Shows I'm watching weekly include What We Do in the Shadows, Harley Quinn, Penny Dreadful: City of Angels, Roswell: New Mexico, and the final seasons of The 100 and Agents of SHIELD have recently started..

Edited by Annara Snow

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1. Westworld

2. Better Call Saul

3. Sex Education

4.Ozark

5. Altered Carbon

6.Killing Eve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Westworld Season 3

Sex Education, S2

The Good Place, series finale

Dracula

Killing Eve Season 3

 Locke and Key, season one. 

 Grace and Frankie

 The Stranger. 

 

Added Killing Eve, i didn’t think it was anywhere near as good as previous seasons, although it did start pretty well. I find all of the cast elevate the show for me though, which is why it isn’t lower. 

Edited by HelenaExMachina

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, HelenaExMachina said:

Westworld Season 3

Sex Education, S2

The Good Place, series finale

Dracula

Killing Eve Season 3

 Locke and Key, season one. 

 Grace and Frankie

 The Stranger. 

 

Added Killing Eve, i didn’t think it was anywhere near as good as previous seasons, although it did start pretty well. I find all of the cast elevate the show for me though, which is why it isn’t lower. 

My wife says her accent is really good, she was surprised the actress is English!.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Jen'ari said:

My wife says her accent is really good, she was surprised the actress is English!.

Yeah, and a Scouser no less! I’m always slightly surprised when you see her speak in interviews an such. 

I’m assuming you mean Jodie Comer there :) Though i like all of the cast and especially liked Fiona Shaw this season, she had some great scenes

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, HelenaExMachina said:

Yeah, and a Scouser no less! I’m always slightly surprised when you see her speak in interviews an such. 

I’m assuming you mean Jodie Comer there :) Though i like all of the cast and especially liked Fiona Shaw this season, she had some great scenes

Yes I was referring to Jodie Comer, she plays the part very well,absolutely mental but funny at the same time.

I liked some of the scenes with Fiona Shaw and her daughter they were great.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  1. Mrs America
  2. La Casa de Papel Season 4
  3. The Good Fight Season 4
  4. Lost in Space Season 2
  5. The English Game
  6. Altered Carbon Season 2
  7. Young Sheldon Season 3
  8. Outlander Season 5
  9. Grey's anatomy Season 16

Two absolutely amazing TV dramas. Money heist gets the better spot for an amazing binge experience, but The Good Fight remains one of those hidden gems of TV. Needless to say, two great TV shows that deserve the praise.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  1. Mrs America
  2. Defending Jacob
  3. La Casa de Papel Season 4
  4. The Good Fight Season 4
  5. Lost in Space Season 2
  6. The English Game
  7. Altered Carbon Season 2
  8. Young Sheldon Season 3
  9. Outlander Season 5
  10. Grey's anatomy Season 16

There are so much wrong with this one - the pacing, certain plot holes, melodrama, but between two incredible performances by Dockery and Evans and that haunting music, one gets a very emotional drama that truly resonates with the viewer. Not fond of ending, but again, those two performances with amazing addition of J.K. Simmons is something you can't miss.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Adding 3 more shows I've finished. And moving Harley Quinn (which has only one episode left of its season 2) up to No. 1.

1.  Harley Quinn (season 1/season 2) - This animated R-rated comedy take on the DC universe and Batman's Gotham is one of the funniest  and wittiest shows I've watched in years. The writing, the animation and the voices are all excellent, and all the main characters are somehow incredibly likable. Season 2 has been even better than season 1 - while remaining as funny, it has kept resisting the temptation to end episodes on a joke and instead has let the dramatic moments sink in, too. Unless the finale is a huge disappointment, it deserves the #1 spot.

2. The Plot Against America - David Simon's excellent mini-series based on Philip Roth's alternative history novel about a 1940s USA where a pro-Nazi president was elected. It's done in a really believable way, where the plot feels really realistic and as something that could have easily happened (and still could happen), and it's particularly chilling because things get slowly and gradually worse before people even realize they live in a Nazi country, and the story makes this brand of Nazism very recognizably American rather than a copy of German Nazism. 

3. BoJack Horseman (season 6b) - the show could have continued (it was Netfix's decision to end it with season 6, not the creative team's), but if it had to end, this was probably the best possible ending. Still, if they revived it,  I'd be overjoyed. This is one of my all time favorite shows and certainly one of the best and most unique shows in recent years. I don't know where I'd rank season 6 - certainly above seasons 1 and 2 and below seasons 5 and 4. Probably about the same as season 3. 

4. What We Do In the Shadows (season 2) - Taika Waititi's and Jermaine Clement's vampire comedy continued to be incredibly funny, and a few of the characters got developed more. Even better than season 1.

5. The Good Place (season 4b) - unlike BoJack, this show really needed to have a definite ending, and it was one planned by the creative team. Not all of season 4 was great, but the finale was amazing. 

6. Evil (season 1) - one of the best new shows this season. Big networks have surprised me by featuring some interesting and original shows like this. I already ranked it on the 2019 list, but the last few episodes aired this season and were all excellent, so the show will probably be even higher on the 2020 list. Unless they screw it up with season 2.

7. Prodigal Son (season 1)- Another pleasant network surprise, it followed the semi-serialized format and combined case-of-the-week crime drama with an overall, far more interesting dysfunctional family drama/thriller involving the man character, profiler Malcolm Bright (an amazing Tom Payne)and his serial killer father in jail (also amazing Michael Sheen), the socialite mother and ambitious reporter sister. When the latter would become the focus of the show, it got much better and more exciting, as in the last few episodes and the explosive finale. However, I'm ranking it slightly below Evil because Evil was far more consistently interesting and entertaining, while Prodigal Son spent too much episodes of cases of the week.

8. The Witcher (season 1) - I don't know if it counts since the show was released last year, but it was late last year, so I'm adding it. I wasn't impressed by the first episode, but the show turned out quite enjoyable. It has quite a few flaws, though I wasn't as bothered by the chaotic timeline as most people seemed to. I haven't read the books or played the games (not a gamer!), but most of the stories were interesting, Yennefer is a really memorable character wit ha compelling story, I really like Henry Cavill as Geralt (though I didn't like him as Superman), and I like the fact that - in spite of the misleading Game of Thrones comparisons - the show is a very different brand of epic fantasy: unabashedly sword-and-sorcery without doing the "oh this a political pseudo-period drama for people who don't like fantasy" thing, not grimdark, not male gazey. Season 1 felt like a setup season, but the show has a lot of potential to get much better.

9. Roswell: New Mexico (season 2) - I liked season 2 better than season 1. I especially the flashbacks interspersed throughout the season, with many revelations about the past, and the ways it affects the characters in the present, and several of the characters had good character development and were much more likable and interesting than in season 1. I like that the show is so openly political, but it may be a bit on the nose a lot of times. The finale was slightly disappointing as the main drama was resolved early on and it spend the rest of the time setting up season 3.

10. Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist (season 1) - This show turned out to be quite a surprise, as its premise (a woman gains the power to hear other people sing their true feelings in the form of various popular songs) made it seem like a quirky musical comedy, but it turned out to be a warm musical dramedy, with emphasis on drama, that deals with issues including illness and loss of a parent,. In the time of grimdark and grittiness, it is rare to something that's so non-cynical and full of empathy and faith in humanity, and at the same time modern and diverse. Would be higher if it weren't for the love triangle at the center and the way it was developed in the last few episodes (some things rubbed me the wrong way).

11. Star Trek: Picard (season 1) - It is great to see Patrick Stewart back as Picard, and I really liked how the show handled his character and some others well-know Trek characters (particularly Seven of Nine). The new characters were also compelling, particularly Santiago Cabrera's Captain Rios. However, the plot had some issues, especially towards the end, and the finale was predictable in many ways.

12. Stumptown (season 1) - another enjoyable new ABC drama, this one based on a comic book. Gets ranked lower because it was mostly episodic, which is not really my favorite type of show. But it is fun, entertaining, smart, has enjoyable characters, diversity (including very non-stereotypical Native American characters and a great character with Down Syndrome, played without stereotypes that sometimes plague characters like that), Cobie Smolders is always fun to watch. 

13. Emergence (season 1) - another good new SciFi show on a network. Unfortunately, since it's on a big network (ABC) it got cancelled. I guess we can ignore the cliffhanger from the last couple of minutes - and the rest of the finale is a satisfying ending to the show.

Luckily, I didn't hate anything this year, apart from the pilot for See, which I didn't even bother to continue. 

 

Currently rewatching Dark, before season 3 drops on 27 June, so I'll be finishing The Last Kingdom when I find the time for it. Penny Dreadful: City of Angels has just 2 more episodes, while The 100 and Agents of SHIELD are early on in their final seasons. I'll also be watching Perry Mason and The Alienist sequel when they start.

Edited by Annara Snow

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only things that have knocked me out are old.  There's been nothing released in 2020 that appealed to me enough to finish watching -- and indeed I found offensive enough in various ways, such as expecting me to pull for the success of people selling cocaine -- that I actively came to dislike them, like amazon's Hunters and netflix's ZeroZeroZero.

The one exception was The Last Kingdom.  But I couldn't watch Outlander -- the violence, while believable, probably, you know I just didn't want to.  Also from the end of February to about the end of April, I was so busy -- and exhausted -- dealing with covid-19, all day and every day, from learning Zoom and teaching with it, to getting food and cooking it, and getting it and other supplies to people who were incapable of dealing, it was only reading a real, print book of long ago history for a few minutes before sleep I could begin to cope with.

So getting Britbox was a gift from heaven, getting see the final seasons of reliable favorites like Vera and Midsomer Murders, which if they don't hold up to the best of the many previous seasons, were more than good enough.  Right now I'm working my way through the Brit-productions of the Maigrets, and re-watching the re-mastered Jean Hickson Miss Marples.  There are still quite a few offerings I haven't touched yet to keep me going through the summer, I hope.  I truly loved the ITV Maigrets and so sorry there wasn't a third season; I so admire Rowan Atkinson's Maigret -- even though it is so British, not French. Somehow that doesn't bother me. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

1. BoJack Horseman - Season 6 - Still a perfect mix of the wacky comedy and tragedy. I could watch many, many more seasons of this, but I'm glad it ended on a high note.

2. Westworld - Season 3 - While it likely won't make much sense or hold up to scrutiny on a rewatch, Westworld still delivers in the high-concept storytelling, excellent acting, and production values, even if it might not all come together in the end.

3. The Witcher - Season 1 - While the Cirri storyline was a bit meh, I think the rest of the show really works well at weaving together multiple stories, episodic storytelling mixed with an overarching narrative, and timelines in a way that may be confusing initially, but it comes together in the end (well, mostly). Some of the effects and action are a bit dodgy, but the acting and character work is generally quite good. Unfortunately, the "finale" is probably the worst episode of the bunch, it delivers in spectacle but is largely unsatisfying.

4. Lost In Space - Season 2 - Good characters, fun action, pretty good acting, just generally a fun show. I don't get much more than surface-level enjoyment from this, but it is good at what it does.

5. Star Trek: Picard - Season 1 - Great acting with a really good concept that almost falls apart in the execution. The show tries to tackle way too many things and does none of them justice. There are some great ideas here, it starts really well (I seem to be in the minority here with that...), but the middle section just drags and is punctuated with one of the worst episodes of nu-Trek I've ever seen (the episode where Picard puts on a ridiculous French accent), but then it has the episode "Nepenthe" which was less focused on action and was fantastic as a result. While, I enjoyed parts of Picard, I think overall, it was somewhat weak. Now, I'm not somebody who thinks that TNG was perfect and that Picard"fails" because it's not an exact recreation of TNG-era Trek. No, if TNG had a bad story or a shitty script, it was over and done with in 45 minutes and you could move and hopefully forget it. Picard is a season long story and it has no idea what it wants to be about. Is it about the Federation no longer living up to its own ideals? Is it about the Borg? Is it about Picard growing old and his past regrets? Yes? Hopefully Season 2 has some more focused direction because it could be good, it just needs some tightening up.

6. The Outsider - I feel like the more I learned about the mystery, the less interesting it got. The first few episodes are great, with some great twists, but the middle section drags on and on and Ben Mendehlson's character takes forever to figure out that something fucking weird is going on. The last episodes almost redeem it, but by then I was watching only out of a sense of obligation. It's exceptionally well-made blah.

7. Lock & Key - Season 1 - Some cool ideas executed in the most stereotypical way possible. Mostly enjoyable with a decent twist at the end even if it felt like it made the whole season fucking pointless. I have no idea if I'll watch season 2. I guess if I'm bored enough I might.

8. Dracula - The first two episodes are campy ridiculousness, mostly enjoyable even if they felt like they could've been edited down a bit. The third episode pretty much sucks. 

Edited by Durckad

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  1. Mrs America
  2. Defending Jacob
  3. La Casa de Papel Season 4
  4. The Good Fight Season 4
  5. Hollywood
  6. Lost in Space Season 2
  7. The English Game
  8. Altered Carbon Season 2
  9. Young Sheldon Season 3
  10. Outlander Season 5
  11. Grey's anatomy Season 16

It is interesting, overtly sweet and mostly escapist. It is the reality that we want and aim to get but somehow the miniseries manages to miss it. Everything ends perfectly but somehow it feels empty. There are moments of great poignancy and it is immensely fun. Overall, I like it. But, it could have been much better.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1.  Dark (season 3) - What can I say? One of the most unique TV shows ever. Brilliant, strange, dark (heh), atmospheric, epic, tragic, with such a complex storyline - which confused me quite a few times but always ended up making sense. Many SciFi shows have tackled time travel, with varying degrees of success, but Dark really took the concept to its logical ends and fully explored it as a plot device. Early on, I was still able to guess some of the twists, but the show managed to become more and more surprising and insane, in a good way, without sacrificing its logic or characterizations. And this is how you do a great bittersweet finale. I feel I will rewatch this one many times, because there are so many things you can notice the second and third etc. time.

2. Harley Quinn (season 1/season 2) - This animated R-rated comedy take on the DC universe and Batman's Gotham is one of the funniest  and wittiest shows I've watched in years. The writing, the animation and the voices are all excellent, and all the main characters are somehow incredibly likable. Season 2 has been even better than season 1 - while remaining as funny, it has kept resisting the temptation to end episodes on a joke and instead has let the dramatic moments sink in, too. Unless the finale is a huge disappointment, it deserves the #1 spot.

3. The Plot Against America - David Simon's excellent mini-series based on Philip Roth's alternative history novel about a 1940s USA where a pro-Nazi president was elected. It's done in a really believable way, where the plot feels really realistic and as something that could have easily happened (and still could happen), and it's particularly chilling because things get slowly and gradually worse before people even realize they live in a Nazi country, and the story makes this brand of Nazism very recognizably American rather than a copy of German Nazism. 

4. BoJack Horseman (season 6b) - the show could have continued (it was Netfix's decision to end it with season 6, not the creative team's), but if it had to end, this was probably the best possible ending. Still, if they revived it,  I'd be overjoyed. This is one of my all time favorite shows and certainly one of the best and most unique shows in recent years. I don't know where I'd rank season 6 - certainly above seasons 1 and 2 and below seasons 5 and 4. Probably about the same as season 3. 

5. What We Do In the Shadows (season 2) - Taika Waititi's and Jermaine Clement's vampire comedy continued to be incredibly funny, and a few of the characters got developed more. Even better than season 1.

6. The Good Place (season 4b) - unlike BoJack, this show really needed to have a definite ending, and it was one planned by the creative team. Not all of season 4 was great, but the finale was amazing. 

7. Evil (season 1) - one of the best new shows this season. Big networks have surprised me by featuring some interesting and original shows like this. I already ranked it on the 2019 list, but the last few episodes aired this season and were all excellent, so the show will probably be even higher on the 2020 list. Unless they screw it up with season 2.

8. Penny Dreadful: City of Angels (season 1) - I'm enjoying so many things about this show - the characters, the setting, the atmosphere, the social and racial issues it tackles. I love it as a period drama/thriller from the 1930s. But I feel that all of it could work as well or better without the supernatural element, specifically the character(s) played by Natalie Dormer. Which means I have a problem with the basic concept of the show. (BTW, the show shouldn't be called Penny Dreadful at all - it has nothing to do with that show except for its creator. City of Angels is good enough as the title.)

9. Prodigal Son (season 1)- Another pleasant network surprise, it followed the semi-serialized format and combined case-of-the-week crime drama with an overall, far more interesting dysfunctional family drama/thriller involving the man character, profiler Malcolm Bright (an amazing Tom Payne)and his serial killer father in jail (also amazing Michael Sheen), the socialite mother and ambitious reporter sister. When the latter would become the focus of the show, it got much better and more exciting, as in the last few episodes and the explosive finale. However, I'm ranking it slightly below Evil because Evil was far more consistently interesting and entertaining, while Prodigal Son spent too much episodes of cases of the week.

10. The Witcher (season 1) - I don't know if it counts since the show was released last year, but it was late last year, so I'm adding it. I wasn't impressed by the first episode, but the show turned out quite enjoyable. It has quite a few flaws, though I wasn't as bothered by the chaotic timeline as most people seemed to. I haven't read the books or played the games (not a gamer!), but most of the stories were interesting, Yennefer is a really memorable character wit ha compelling story, I really like Henry Cavill as Geralt (though I didn't like him as Superman), and I like the fact that - in spite of the misleading Game of Thrones comparisons - the show is a very different brand of epic fantasy: unabashedly sword-and-sorcery without doing the "oh this a political pseudo-period drama for people who don't like fantasy" thing, not grimdark, not male gazey. Season 1 felt like a setup season, but the show has a lot of potential to get much better.

11. Roswell: New Mexico (season 2) - I liked season 2 better than season 1. I especially the flashbacks interspersed throughout the season, with many revelations about the past, and the ways it affects the characters in the present, and several of the characters had good character development and were much more likable and interesting than in season 1. I like that the show is so openly political, but it may be a bit on the nose a lot of times. The finale was slightly disappointing as the main drama was resolved early on and it spend the rest of the time setting up season 3.

12. Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist (season 1) - This show turned out to be quite a surprise, as its premise (a woman gains the power to hear other people sing their true feelings in the form of various popular songs) made it seem like a quirky musical comedy, but it turned out to be a warm musical dramedy, with emphasis on drama, that deals with issues including illness and loss of a parent,. In the time of grimdark and grittiness, it is rare to something that's so non-cynical and full of empathy and faith in humanity, and at the same time modern and diverse. Would be higher if it weren't for the love triangle at the center and the way it was developed in the last few episodes (some things rubbed me the wrong way).

13. Star Trek: Picard (season 1) - It is great to see Patrick Stewart back as Picard, and I really liked how the show handled his character and some others well-know Trek characters (particularly Seven of Nine). The new characters were also compelling, particularly Santiago Cabrera's Captain Rios. However, the plot had some issues, especially towards the end, and the finale was predictable in many ways.

14. Stumptown (season 1) - another enjoyable new ABC drama, this one based on a comic book. Gets ranked lower because it was mostly episodic, which is not really my favorite type of show. But it is fun, entertaining, smart, has enjoyable characters, diversity (including very non-stereotypical Native American characters and a great character with Down Syndrome, played without stereotypes that sometimes plague characters like that), Cobie Smolders is always fun to watch. 

15. Emergence (season 1) - another good new SciFi show on a network. Unfortunately, since it's on a big network (ABC) it got cancelled. I guess we can ignore the cliffhanger from the last couple of minutes - and the rest of the finale is a satisfying ending to the show.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Annara Snow I think I may feel the same about Penny Dreadful. I think the supernatural scenes are very feel crafted, and show the same flair Logan displayed in the original series. But they don't seem necessary for this series, almost like an afterthought. Granted this is only two episodes in but I could quite happily just watch the show without those scenes. Natalie Dormer's characters could exist without any supernatural element (so far anyway) and not really change anything. Well, except

uh, weird child absorption in episode one

:huh: 

 

Anyway, like you I'm loving it (the police stuff is distinctly uncomfortable at the present) but it doesn't need the supernatural for me. 

I knew going in it would be a very different show, I recall interviews where Logan said it would be more focused on the bigotry and civil strife. I suppose calling it Penny Dreadful is a bit odd. At a guess that is part of the reason for the supernatural, to make some tie to the original series. 

Just thinking about it a little, Rory Kinnear being in both gives a bit of an American Horror Story vibe, an anthology with recurring actors in each series. Oh of only they had Eva Green return :(

Will add this to my list once I've finished the series

On 5/30/2020 at 10:47 PM, Jen'ari said:

 

Westworld Season 3

Sex Education, S2

I May Destroy You - thought this was excellent, I can't really put my feelings about the show into words but I thought it was extremely well done.

The Good Place, series finale

Dracula

The Luminaries - Distinctly 'meh.' Some good acting and a kind of engaging plot at the heart of the show but I ever really felt too compelled to watch. I was ready for the series to end when I got to the last episode, and not in an I'm on the edge of my seat and must know what happens kind of way.

Killing Eve Season 3

 Locke and Key, season one. 

 Grace and Frankie

 The Stranger

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Updates:

  1. Star Wars: The Clone Wars – when it comes to series finales, this show is in the group that had exceedingly strong finishes. While the 3 arcs were not of the same quality, it was consistently strong on the visual side. Also, an amazing soundtrack.
  2. Kingdom (Korean Netflix show) - a highly entertaining second season. Maybe not as solid as season 1, but still excellent, with several good twists and turns. Interested to see how the story evolves.
  3. Dark - a pretty good final season, but even more convoluted than the preceding seasons. Not 100% neatly tied up, but overall a strong finish.
  4. Westworld – I liked it, mainly thanks to the show producing a interesting world. I continued to like the characters, too, though the plot was at times lackluster.
  5. Altered Carbon – not as good as first season and may be the last. A few choices diminished the characterization of the protagonist. It was still strong on the visuals, and I’m still intrigued about its universe.
  6. The Umbrella Academy - season 2 worked much better for me than season 1. I found most aspects about the show to have been improved. 
  7. The Last Kingdom – I was disappointed in how much it diverged from both books and history. I had too high hopes that this show could be more unique, rather than follow in the path of other shows. Alas, while still mostly fun, it may not be that special anymore.
  8. The Outsider – Had a very strong opening, then meandered somewhat, up until the last couple of episodes, which finished fairly well. Well-acted throughout.
  9. Beforeigners – An enjoyable dark comedy with an interesting premise, if the execution wasn't that strong. Most of the characters were fun.
  10. Homeland – an ok final season, but with some hard to believe and digest plot twists. I’m glad it’s over.
  11. Outlander – While still looking wonderful, the story this season was incredibly slow and boring, and its ending had some poor creative choices, to put it mildly.
  12. Star Trek: Picard - well this should have been better; slow start, strong build up, meh finale. It demands more exploration of the world. Patrick Stewart was strong, but I didn't feel much attachment to the new characters. Maybe that will improve next season. 
  13. Messiah – not bad, but I feel the mystery is better than the eventual answers; the show had a good dance between religious and secular themes, which I liked, but I can see how it could be controversial. (Edit: show's been cancelled)
  14. Locke & Key – an interesting premise, and great visuals; predictable season ending, and in the end not that compelling of a story.
  15. Warrior Nun - wooden dialogue, mediocre acting, generally bad visuals, failure for the cast to actually learn Spanish despite the setting, the occasional good moment, and crap cliffhanger ending. I don't care if it returns.
  16. The Letter for the King - on par with GoT season 8. Stuff happened because of reasons, character development was stunted. I suppose it has the excuse of being YA, but it was still mostly trash. It had the weirdest, slowest magical good v. evil duel I've ever seen, with no explanation whatsoever. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...