While I do think 2014 was a pretty good year for films, it was an even better year for television. There are so many good TV shows on right now, and a handful of them even match the quality found with films. Posted below are my personal top 10 TV shows of 2014.
10. Doctor Who
I am a huge Doctor Who fan. Ever since I stumbled upon the show in 2011 I was hooked. The previous Doctor (Matt Smith) is my favorite, so I was a bit nervous going into this season. However, this season certainly surprised me. While there were some forgettable episodes (like every season of Doctor Who), many were great and Peter Capaldi really shined as the 12th incarnation of The Doctor. Also his companion, Clara Oswald, really came into her own this season. I am eagerly awaiting the next one, and hope it is every bit as good.
9. The Flash
Here is a new show that aired this fall, and it has become one of my favorites. The first few episodes were good, but as the season went on there were some fantastic episodes. Grant Gustin has gotten much better at playing The Flash, and the rest of the cast continues to shine. It is by no means a perfect show, but it handles superheroes extremely well. With half of the season already over, I am looking forward to see how the rest of it plays out.
Season 2 of this show really blew me away. Especially the second half. The stakes were raised, and every character had a moment to shine. Season 3 has started off to a fairly solid start, but there were one or two episodes that really did not do it for me. With that said, season 3 had a midseason finale that delivered one of the finest hours of television (at least for the fall season). I can honestly say I lost my breathe after the shows’ midseason finale and do not know where the show will go from here.
7. The Legend of Korra
Talk about a great show. This is the only animated show on my list, and for good reason. This show sets the bar for the greatness that every animated show should strive to achieve. It makes me so upset that Nickelodeon treats this show so poorly. Not only do they rush out the 4th season, but they only release it online. This show is better than any of the other animated shows on Nickelodeon, and it delivered an incredibly satisfying ending to a fantastic show. There was fantastic character development, great storytelling, beautiful animation, and stunning battles.
This show will probably make my top 10 list whenever it releases a new season. It is just such a good show in every way. The acting is impeccable. Benedict Cumberbatch is hands down one of the best working actors today, with Martin Freedman right there beside him. The two of them work so well together, and it really shows in this season. Not only that, but the season offered a great villain, an interesting overarching story, and (as always) some incredible cinematography. The forth season of the show will not be released until early 2016, with a Christmas special in 2015. There is plenty of Sherlock to look forward to.
5. Game of Thrones
I am sure some people will be upset that Game of Thrones is so low on my list, but that is only because I thought there were better shows. All these shows (in my opinion) are fantastic, but this was a great season, just not as great as other television shows this year. I do not even know where to begin. There were some truly fantastic moments from this season, but the best had to be the Mountain dueling Oberyn. It is such an intense battle, and offered one of the best battles ever put on television. A low point of the season was no real progress with Daenerys, but it did not detract from the overall quality of the season. Even with that, the show proves itself as consistently superior to most shows on television.
4. True Detective
Wow, what a fantastic show. This show premiered early in the year (along with the rest of my top 10) and showed quality rarely seen in television shows. It felt like I was watching an 8 hour film, and I loved every bit of it. Honestly, it was very hard for me to give it the spot of number 4. These top 4 TV shows are all equally brilliant, but some of them had something better than the others. True Detective did have some pacing problems, but that is me just nitpicking. It really is a truly phenomenal show, and both McConaughey and Harrelson knocked it out of the park.
It is interesting how both Fargo and True Detective are so close together. In many ways they are similar, and in many ways they are not. They both deal with the police trying to uncover a murderer, but they both tackle that premise in two very different ways. Perhaps because I love the original Fargo film I am a bit biased, but I think Fargo had more style. I love the cinematography of the show, all the characters are interesting, the music is memorable, and the finale is absolutely perfect. I never thought a show based on the original film could have worked, but this show really proved me wrong. I am excited to see where the show goes in the future. I heard that the second season (like True Detective) will focus on a completely different set of characters, and I think that is perfect.
2. The Leftovers
Beautiful. If I chose one word to describe this show, it would be beautiful. It is beautifully shot, beautifully acted, and beautifully scored. I still listen to the music of the show because it truly is fantastic. There is a reason why most of my list contains shows from HBO. They really know how to create content that is elevated to a whole new level. “Two Boats and a Helicopter” is one of the best episodes of any show. It had a beautiful story to tell, and Christopher Eccleston did such a fantastic job in that episode. Unfortunately that was his only episode where he was the main focus, but I hope he gets more focus in the next season. HBO has such a great new show, and I hope it gets the love it deserves. I know that many people do not have the same love for this show as I do, but I do not understand why. Most people complain because the show does not explain why the people disappeared, but those people do not understand the purpose of the show. It is not about those who are gone, but about those who are left.
Perfect is a word that is usually thrown around carelessly. Perfect is defined as something without flaws, and such is the case with the second season of Hannibal. I recently revisited the show, and realized that I had no problems with the season. Everything about it was brilliant, and in that moment I realized this is my favorite show of 2014. It is such a unique show, and it puts all other shows on NBC to shame. I despise that NBC has this show on at 10pm on Fridays. That is the worst time slot, and it only means that Hannibal’s days are limited. I hope that another network picks it up, or that NBC does whatever it can to make sure the show stays on the air. I liked the Silence of the Lambs film, but I am willing to argue that this show is even better. The characters are so fascinating, the cinematography is alluring, and the music is breathtaking. The second seasons’ finale left me breathless, and I can not believe that I have survived the year without a third season. The next season should be coming out within a couple of months, and my only hope is that it is every bit as good as the second season.