Best of TV 2012
I’m back…. just in time for yearly round-ups! Here’s my best of list for the 2012 television season.
HOMELAND (SHOWTIME) – With amazing actors Claire Danes and Damian Lewis, there’s no way “Homeland” can go wrong. This year it had another amazing season, topping the fast pace and gripping nature of the first, and continuing to be one of best dramas on television.
PARKS AND RECREATION (NBC) – “Parks and Recreation” continues to hit gold with its charming characters and amazingly well written episodes (Amy Poehler’s “The Debate” being a prime example). “Parks and Recreation” is still one of the most endearing and hilarious shows of the season.
GAME OF THRONES (HBO) – “Game of Thrones” is a shining example of a complex and dark (albeit sometimes convoluted) drama that continues to amaze and entertain. “Game of Thrones” manages to loyally adapt “A Song of Ice and Fire”, a famous and acclaimed fantasy series, while still being gripping and captivating in its own right.
THE WALKING DEAD (AMC) – Being a fan of the graphic novels, I was incredibly vocal about my distain of the second season of “The Walking Dead”. Thankfully, Mazzara and co. decided to abandon the lifelessly slow pace of season two and reinvigorate “The Walking Dead” with new life. While it’s definitely not a good adaptation of the comic series by a long shot, “The Walking Dead” is still brutal fun, and is one of this year’s best dramas.
DEXTER (SHOWTIME) – Recovering from a downward trend starting with its fifth season and ending in a sixth season filled with clunky religious allegory and some cringe-worthy writing, “Dexter” managed to climb its way back to the top once again with a great season including some great performances by Jennifer Carpenter and guest stars Yvonne Strahovski and Ray Stevenson.
COMMUNITY (NBC) – Anyone who’s read previous posts of mine or follows me on twitter will know that I simply adore “Community”. The quirky, geeky and all-around weird show isn’t for everyone (as emphasized by this year’s “The Civil War” spoof episode), but for those able to understand the hilarious meta-humor, “Community” is spectacular.
VEEP (HBO) – “Veep” definitely started shaky as a “Parks and Rec.”-esque female centered workplace comedy, but ended its season so well that it’s hard to leave it off the list. Julia Louis-Dreyfus steals the show as Selina Meyer, who brings the “terrible boss” character to a whole new level.
HAPPY ENDINGS (ABC) – Forget “New Girl”, “Happy Endings” is one of the best comedies of the season, far outshining FOX’s similar Descanel-starring series. Casey Wilson and Adam Pally are some of the best comedic actors out there, and the Russo Brothers-produced show proves it.
HUNTED (BBC/CINEMAX) – Part of Cinemax’s new foray into original series, “Hunted” started off dreadfully slow. But thankfully the cinematic and indescribably beautiful drama from “MI-5” creator Frank Spotnitz picked up the pace to deliver a fresh and complex take on the spy espionage drama.
THE NEWSROOM (HBO) – Aaron Sorkin’s new series had some troubles, but it has the right amount of charm and wit to make you love it. Jeff Daniels, Allison Pill and Olivia Munn are standout performers.
NIKITA (CW) – Once again, “Nikita” rules the air as The CW’s best show. The woefully low rated spy show kicked some serious ass in its second season.
FRINGE (FOX) – “Fringe” isn’t the brain-wrinkling sci-fi/horror drama it used to be. It’s golden days are definitely over, but that doesn’t mean it can’t deliver a great final season.
ADVENTURE TIME (CARTOON NETWORK) – “WAIT… a kids show??” is probably the first thought running through your head right now. But “Adventure Time” is one of those few animated shows (joined by such company as “Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends” and “Avatar the Last Airbender”) that delivers a funny and well written narrative while under the guise of a children’s program.
BEST NEW SHOW
ARROW (CW) – Following The CW’s tradition of live action DC Comics adaptations (á la “Smallville”), “Arrow” is an interesting and dark take on the Green Arrow origin story. You don’t have to be a fan of the comics to enjoy this action filled superhero show.
LAST RESORT (ABC) – It pains me to say that “Last Resort”, my favorite pilot of the season, has quickly become a muddled mess. It’s hard to say what really went wrong here, but something caused the Shawn Ryan-penned adrenaline fest to become a dull, dragging soap of a show.
TRUE BLOOD (HBO) – In what seems to be an agonizing trend (mirroring last season’s “Dexter”), “True Blood” attempted and failed a season full of religious allegory and convoluted multi-character arcs. I still love the gore filled, vampire sex fest that is “True Blood”, but this season only made it tough to enjoy.
ONCE UPON A TIME (ABC) – My feelings for ABC’s “Fables”-esque drama all but disappeared. The simple answer: it got boring. Sorry, “Once”, but I’m not coming back.
Have any favorites not on the list? Post your picks in the comments below!