There are so many things to watch this year, but I don’t have a billion hours to stream every single TV show being made right now. I’ve got to be picky. Very picky.
The following are my top picks for the year. Do with it what you will…
Sherlock (Season Three)(BBC)
Need I explain why I cannot wait for the third season of Sherlock? Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman are simply amazing as Sherlock and Watson, so much so that I cannot imagine anyone else in the role. Plus, I am chopping at the bit to find out what happens next!
Bonus Point: A clever, modern take on the classic character is always fun.
Game of Thrones (Season Three)(HBO)
I’ve reviewed enough Game of Thrones to make it clear that I would probably sell a kidney to afford cable for the remainder of the show. The first two seasons were amazingly good, with knockout performances from a wide range of cast members. Fantasy television has never been this good. Ever.
Bonus Point: Finding serious, well-written, compelling fantasy TV is impossible…until now.
Original programming on Syfy. By that I mean original programming that isn’t B-movie drivel that makes Christmas TV Movie season look like a joyride… I’m intrigued by the premise, if only because I have some vain hope that it will be much better than Fallen Skies, which may be the most predictable TV show next to Walking Dead…
Bonus Point: Syfy is taking the show seriously enough to work with Trion Worlds to create an MMO to run alongside. Pretty cool.
The Following (FOX)
Color me psychotic, but I love dark crime thrillers. The Following feels something like Millenium, but with a stronger, more connected storyline. The idea is intriguing. Plus, James Purefoy plays the villain, which should work just fine!
Bonus Point: Kevin Bacon. I’ve loved the man since Tremors.
The Americans (FX)
Anyone who knows me also knows that I call them communists every chance I get. Why? Because I find it amusing to resort to political hackery for the sake of comedy. Thus, The Americans has a plot similar enough to my hobby to make it interesting enough to try. Considering that there is so much garbage on TV right now, I could really use a good old fashioned non-genre drama with a little political spunk to it!
Bonus Point: Keri Russel = heaven.
Doctor Who (Season Seven Part Two)(BBC)
Doctor Who has fallen in the ranks for me. I really love the show, and Matt Smith is a decent Doctor, but the stories are getting a little tired for me. If I see one more Dalek, I’m going to throw something, if only because every major series surprise always includes the Daleks. That’s not entertaining anymore.
But I’ll keep watching and hoping that things will improve. I’m hoping for some amazing story connections, some brilliant plotting, and some old time Doctor fun! We’ll see…
Bonus Point: It’s science fiction and still better than 90% of the stuff on TV that has the audacity to call itself science fiction…
Ripper Street (BBC)
I’m quite fascinated with BBC productions at the moment (if this list isn’t enough of an indication). Some of the best writing is found there, and I suspect Ripper Street will be no exception. The show follows the aftermath of the Ripper murders, which tells me that it will be less about the Ripper himself than about how a police force regains its respectability after failing to bring the Ripper to justice. Intriguing, methinks.
Bonus Point: Jerome Flynn. You know, the guy who plays Bronn in Game of Thrones? I know, right?
Hemlock Grove (Netflix)
The first Netflix beast on this list. And I really hope it turns out well. Netflix has the perfect platform for original television; if Hemlock Grove and Arrested Development do well, then say hello to a new generation of online-only entertainment.
But to Hemlock Grove: it’s a kind of urban fantasy crime thriller staring Famke Janssen and Bill Skarsgard. What else do you need to know?
Bonus Point: Aaron Douglas of Battlestar Galactica fame plays the Sheriff. Woo!
Orphan Black (BBC America)
BBC America has big shoes to fill with this one. Its UK mother has already produced some amazing shows, so I’m hoping that Orphan Black is the American branch’s response to great cable SF/F. And it’s about clones, which is always fun for us academic types.
Bonus Point: It’s coming soon!
Arrested Development (Season Four)(Netflix)
I do not need to say a damn thing. It’s Arrested Development, and it’s coming back to us through Netflix. Thank you, Netflix! Thank you so so so much!
Bonus Point: It’s Arrested Development…completed. What more do you want?
And that does it. Which TV shows are you looking forward to in 2013? The comments are yours!