We’ve found escapism through television for a long time, but it was never needed more than this year. 2020 is the year that kept throwing punches and just wouldn’t quit. Just when we thought we had seen the worst, it gave us something more.
More than ever, we needed to be taken out of our reality and into a fictional one. TV shows gave us that this year. I found comfort in many new shows, and some I’ve been a fan of for a while. Here are the 10 TV shows I believe to be the best of this year.
It seems like another lifetime ago when season two of All American came out, but that was this year. I love this show because it’s a nice break from all the superhero shows on the CW. Plus, they talk about such important issues. Olivia Baker (Samatha Logan) has lived a life of privilege but going to Crenshaw showed her the injustices happening to her people. She wanted to do something about it, so she started a podcast.
Plus, Spencer gets shot, and the doctors didn’t give him pain killers because they assumed he was in a gang and/or on drugs. That’s crazy. He was a top player on the high school football team.
All American didn’t know just how timely they were leading up to the Black Lives Matter movement’s surge. These are the stories that should be being told to see the injustices and make them right.
Hulu’s The Great came at a time when we all needed it, when we were in the middle of lockdown, alone, and with nowhere to go.
It was a hilarious take on Katherine the Great. Between the comedy and bright colors, it was a needed joy during this horrible year.
The Alienist also had great timing. I had very few shows to cover for my blog, and I kept seeing the season two promo of The Alienist while watching Snowpiecer, and it seemed like a good fit. So I devoured the first season pretty quickly and fell in love.
The TNT detective period piece is severely underrated, and how are more people not talking about Dakota Fanning’s performance? She’s playing a woman leading the way for women that come after her, doing things women are not supposed to be doing. She’s a private investigator, which is unheard of during that time, and she’s a good one.
Plus, you get an intriguing mystery about children going missing that you watch Sara Howard (Dakota), John Moore (Luke Evans), and Laszlo Kreizler (Daniel Brühl) work their way through. They are an amazing team, and it’s great to watch the case unravel piece by piece in every episode.
Perry Mason has to be one of the most beautiful shows ever. The cinematography was incredible. It was a gripping mystery in LA during the great depression. You wanted to know who the killer was, but it turned into more of wanting Perry (Matthew Rhys) to win his first case as a lawyer. He had all the odds stacked against him, but he kept moving forward, searching for the clues he needed to win the case. That has a lot to do with Matthew’s performance. He really had you rooting for the guy.
I have never seen anything else in the Perry Mason franchise, so I can’t compare it to the originals. But, I am a fan of great crime stories like Zodiac and Mystic River. That’s why Perry Mason and The Alienist resonate with me so much. These kinds of stories make a lot of sense on TV, and I’m here for it.
I was also delighted to see Chris Chalk in this. I loved him in Gotham and have had the privilege of interviewing him. He’s a very nice guy, and it’s great to see him succeeding and having great performances.
And we will get the chance to delve more into this world because Perry Mason was renewed for a second season.
We’ve all been waiting for season four of Wynonna Earp for a long time. Getting this back during 2020 made the year a little bit brighter. Even if we couldn’t get the entire season, it was good to step back into this world for a little while.
While the season does turn dark, it was a lot of fun in the first few episodes. The writers gave the fans everything they wanted after fighting to keep the show, and it’s what I needed, but I am definitely looking forward to the plot unfolding.
Teenage Bounty Hunters
Teenage Bounty Hunters has to be the most fun show of the year. It seems like a silly show on its face, but it’s an amazingly hilarious, smart, and well-done show.
It’s so bizarre and turns everything on its heads. It breaks down Christain stereotypes in a very seamless way. All while they are tracking down bail skippers.
It’s disappointing that Teenage Bounty Hunters didn’t get a second season, but it’s still a delight and must-see.
I started watching The Boys after it was announced that Jensen Ackles would be in season three, but then I got addicted. It’s definitely the craziest show I have ever seen. And I love the commentary on current events. They do it in such a brutal way that ties into the story. If it wasn’t for the show’s craziness, the political elements might have been too much to take in a crazy year such as this one. While the political elements shined a light on our own world, we were definitely not in our universe. And it was nice to have a weekly escape.
Emily in Paris
While Emily in Paris got a lot of criticism, I loved it. It was a fantasy world that I needed this year. It was a magical world of fashion and what we all dream Paris would be like. I don’t know if this show would be so delightful in a year other than 2020. It was a lighthearted, inspiring show that breathed fresh air into this year. I’m definitely excited for season two. It’s going to take a lot to get over 2020, so another season of its magicalness will still be needed for a while.
In a year that called for more diversity in every aspect, Lovecraft Country filled that need. It touched on the injustices that African Americans went through in the 1950s, which really should have been taught better in school, and it gave horror and sci-fi fans a great treat. I loved how each episode was a story in itself, but there was also an overarching one. The cast was also phenomenal. Jurnee Smollett has found a fan in me, and I’ll be checking out her other work.
The Flight Attendant
The Flight Attendant is also a show we needed this year. It’s a great distraction to 2020, and it’s so much fun to watch Kaley Cuoco spiral out of control as she tries to find out what happened to her one night stand and save herself.
TV definitely came through this year when we needed to step out of our realities and into the world of TV. Even with production shutdowns, there was still amazing TV already made and headed our way. They couldn’t have predicted what life would be like when the shows were released, but they somehow managed to give us exactly what we needed.
What were your favorite shows of the year? Tweet me @MandyTTCarr or comment below.