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Jun 28, 2005

Glad to see we're back again and I appreciate you giving us more time to get entries in, I'd suggest making it the end of the first week of January going forward as a lot of folks are busy over the holidays or able to fit in some binges. Unfortunately I wasn't able to get around to watching everything I would have liked so in case you were wondering why something didn't make my list that's probably the reason. I really like this thread as I always find new shows I would've otherwise missed and am reminded of shows I need to watch so thank you Rarity and Toxx for making it happen.

Honourable mentions: Animals., GLOW, Crashing, Catastrophe, The Good Place, The Deuce, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Rick and Morty, Brockmire and The Punisher

10. Big Mouth - This show by all rights should not be as good as it is. I'm not a huge Nick Kroll fan but he does a great job here. By far my favourite character has to be Maya Rudolph's The Hormone Monstress, I could listen to her say bubble bath forever.

9. Mr. Robot - I'm admittedly a season 2 apologist but I definitely think this season was a return to form. I find this show compelling and eagerly awaited each new episode. I enjoyed the "twist" at the end of the season and look forward to the next.

8. Mindhunter - The show fascinated me. I was a fan of Holt McCallany from Lights Out but feel he's even better in this however Jonathan Groff definitely takes the cake. There is a great progression in the first season and I'm excited to see where they go from here.

7. Star vs. The Forces of Evil - Another show I likely would have missed if not for this fine forum. This show is a perfect successor to Gravity Falls and just loving fun! I like all the characters and while I had some misgivings are the start of the new run I feel they did a superb job landing everything. If I need to just tune out for 11-12 minutes and feel good this is my go-to show.

6. Bojack Horseman - So many great moments. This show goes from hilarious to heart wrenching better than any other I can think of. Episode eleven was an incredible revelation and is a great example of why this show continues to be a must watch for me.

5. Stranger Things - I wasn't sure where the Duffer brothers would be able to go after the incredible first season but they blew me away again. I enjoyed the arcs of all the characters and the introduction of Brett Gelman as Murray was awesome.

4. Man Seeking Woman - I loved this show. I have a really hard time putting my finger on exactly what about it resonates with me but it does! It gave me a lot of belly laughs and warm fuzzies. I feel the third and final season was its strongest and the addition of Katie Findlay was fantastic.

3. Patriot - A surprising late edition to my list thanks to you kind goons. Shows that make my list are usually doing something different and man does this show ever do that! The use of folk music to tell the story of John's mental breakdown is genius. The episode where he's wandering around Luxembourg with the hiking pack might be my favourite of the year.

2. The Leftovers - Emotionally wrenching. I wasn't sure if they'd be able to land the finale and while I recall there being some critics I thought it was spectacular. The performances were amazing all around but those of Justin Theroux and Carrie Coon were on another level. I was impressed with how they were able to change locations each season without skipping a beat.

1. Review - This show, this loving show, in my opinion is one of the most overlooked and underrated shows ever! The journey of Forrest MacNeil was a true delight to watch from start to finish. I can't recall a single bad episode throughout the entire series and it ended in brilliant fashion.

Corte fucked around with this message at 04:49 on Jan 11, 2018


Jun 28, 2005

DivisionPost posted:

9.) Brockmire (IFC)

“Knowledge and assumptions, those are like Loggins and Messina. They seem similar, but time proves one of them to be completely worthless.” -Brockmire

You’d assume that Brockmire would just be eight episodes of Hank Azaria spouting ridiculous poo poo in his old-timey baseball announcer voice because, frankly, that might actually be enough to carry a show. Azaria is loving hilarious in the role, as evidenced by that amazing opening scene embedded up above. But there’s a pain in Azaria’s performance that the show, created by Joel Church-Cooper and directed by Tim Kirkby (Fleabag, Look Around You), isn’t afraid to shy away from. It’s not BoJack Horseman (which we’ll get to). It’s an absurd comedy from the first episode to the last. But his damage is still taken fairly seriously, forming the basis for his surprisingly sweet relationship with his equally damaged new boss Jules (Amanda Peet). And rather than make it into a stealth drama, it just makes the comedy that much deeper and funnier.

I can't believe I forgot Brockmire, I even made a thread for it! All of your write ups were fantastic, thanks for going to such effort!

Jun 28, 2005

DivisionPost posted:

6.) Pretty Good (YouTube)

“We’re serious about success.” -DeVry

My definition of what constitutes TV is...weird. I'm using a broad definition that includes absolutely free YouTube shows that puts out 15-30 minute episodes whenever its creator feels like it and has thus only released three "episodes" this year. I may or may not be told to revise this list. I kinda hope I'm not, because frankly, more people should know about this series, the guy behind it, and one particular episode he did that I still can't wrap my mind around.

Pretty Good is entirely produced, directed, edited, and researched by Jon Bois, creative director for the sports site SB Nation. As you'd expect, the series mostly tells sports stories but it branches out to pop culture (a couple of years back there was an excellent episode about 24), history, and general weirdness. In these breakdowns, laced with his goofy deadpan sense of humor, Bois finds unexpected poignancy (Larry Walters), sometimes existential despair ("The Dumbest Boy Alive"), and sometimes he catches faint glimpses of what looks like a remarkable, unexpected order to this random, meaningless universe ("Why Do I Choose This For A Living").

As mentioned, this year he put out three episodes: one was about NBA player Baron Davis sinking a buzzer-beater from 89 feet, another was about the Philadelphia Eagles during and after the bitter NFL strike of 1987. Both of these are fantastic; the latter in particular makes me wonder what Bois could do if he had a crew, some money, and a deal with ESPN to do a 30 for 30.

It's the episode he made in-between that forced me to shove this thing on my list: “Troy State 253, DeVry 141.” It tells the story of the highest-scoring basketball game ever on record—a game so wild, he argues, that it may have gone down in the record books with the wrong score. As Bois himself admits in narration, this is not a “story” in the traditional sense. There's no beginning, middle, or end. After some brief setup to explain the road these two teams had leading up to this game, the raw content of the episode is pure numbers. Bois is a stat junkie, and he breaks the game down from every conceivable statistical angle. Sounds boring, right? Of course it does...before you add clever editing, fantastic music cues (both licensed and stock), quotes from The Iliad, clips from 1962's The Fury of Achilles, and surprising comparisons to Biblical-themed works from 16th century Dutch painter Pieter Bruegel.

Once you stop asking yourself "What the gently caress is this," go find thirty minutes in your day and watch Bois sketch a portrait of a basketball game between a team determined to play as fast and as fun as possible and a rival that was determined to keep up, even as they were getting decimated. It is beautiful, original, awe-inspiring, and sometimes even funny as hell (in one memorable moment, one of Bois' co-workers observes that a player may have done the very first dab). It's a video—and in turn, a show, cowtown as it may be—that I kept coming back to all year, even more than the other shows on my list, to watch again and again and again.

Thank you for this! I would likely have never stumbled upon this diamond in the rough myself and I'm already on episode six. This thread always delivers and this might be the most bountiful year yet.

Jun 28, 2005

Thanks to all who contributed, especially Rarity for putting it all together. I don't post much these days but I always look forward to this thread and the gems it shines a light on. I think The Good Place coming first is well deserved and in hindsight should have made my list, something about it being a partial season made me secondguess myself. Another good crop this year as I loved Patriot and have been enjoying Riverdale so far.

So about Legion... it stresses me the gently caress out. I have done the first couple episodes a couple times now and find the show to be... intense. I recognize everything about it is genius and that what I've seen is great television but I don't know if my mind can handle whatever is going to happen next.

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