Up next on my Best of the Year accolades rampage is the top seven shows that really made my 2017. Why top seven? Well, there were seven shows I really got into this year and need to honor. In order to qualify for this list, the show had to air new episodes this year (though it didn’t have to premiere this year) and I, naturally, had to have watched it. And so, without further ado, here are the seven shows that really stood out in 2017:
- It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (Premiered August 4, 2005):
Despite watching this show for the first time this year, I’ve already binged it twice. This show quickly became one of my favorite shows of all time. It’s part sitcom satire and part its own thing. The entire point of the show is that these characters are terrible people and they don’t grow. It’s a fascinating study in character, but mostly, it’s just funny as hell. They don’t use “offensive” humor for shock value, but rather to make a point. Three out of the five members of the main cast are also writers on the show and have control over the direction each character takes. On top of all that, there’s a canon gay character in the main cast. That’s right, in season twelve this character not only comes out as gay, but then never shuts up about being gay for the rest of the season. Honestly, same. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend this show to everyone (I think you need a particular sense of humor and outlook to appreciate it (in a “this is not for everyone” way, not a “you just wouldn’t get it” way)), but I certainly recommend it. I can’t wait for season thirteen! Just nine more months to go (maybe)!
2. Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Premiered September 17, 2013):
This show is easily one of the best (if not the best) shows on television right now. It’s got so much representation and never uses their minority status as the butt of jokes. Now, it’s not perfect, but it’s pretty damn close. We’ve got two Latina women, two black men, a Jewish man, and two queer characters. The two queer characters (one bisexual and one gay) are also both people of color. Andy Samberg, the star and producer of the show, actively tries to make the scripts more feminist. The show also features one of the best relationships on TV (Jake and Amy FTW!!!). This show is in danger of being canceled, so if you haven’t watched it yet, get on the winning team now! I promise you won’t regret it.
3. Superstore (Premiered November 30, 2015):
Speaking of sitcoms with lots of diversity, this one fits that bill in lots of intersectional ways. There is a Latina woman, a gay Filipino man, and a black disabled man. Sure, it could use some more diversity, but again their minority status is not used as a punchline. Each episode features some of the most ridiculous situations you’ve ever seen, but never in a way that comes as a detriment to your enjoyment of the show. Every character also gets to be hilarious, even the side characters. This is just one more show you don’t want to miss.
4. Sweet/Vicious (Premiered November 15, 2016):
Unfortunately, this is one show you almost certainly missed. After one fantastic season, it was canceled. This was such a cathartic show, women taking action and getting vigilante justice against the rapists on their college campus. Maybe it’s unrealistic, maybe it’s not; either way, it was an empowering story. One of the two main characters is a victim of sexual assault, and we see her learn to cope with this while kicking ass and taking names. Our other main character is canonically bisexual. There are also two black characters. Just when the show planned to start addressing male victims of rape, its life was cut short. Even so, this is definitely a show every girl should watch and every guy should take heed from. It’s a powerful story, a warrior cut down in its prime.
5. The Get Down (Premiered August 12, 2016):
While we’re on the subject of shows that deserved another season, let’s discuss Baz Luhrmann’s Netflix masterpiece. This show is so. Good. It’s a heavy show, but each episode just flies by. Even better? It has original music! The cast is entirely made up of black and Afro-Latino people (minus a couple white people here and there), and it chronicles their characters’ journeys in the disco-fueled seventies. It also has queer characters (one bisexual, one undefined). It’s heartbreaking and devastating, but also uplifting and hopeful. It’s so well-acted and the mise-en-scene is just gorgeous. I’m still not over the unfair cancelation of this wonderful show. Can we crowdfund a comeback?
6. The Mick (Premiered January 1, 2017):
Did you ever wonder what The Nanny would be like if Fran Fine was a human disaster and borderline alcoholic, and the kids were prone to mayhem? No? Well, this show answers that unasked question. While Mickey does bring much-needed affection into these kids’ lives, she also brings unbridled chaos. But the shenanigans aren’t all her doing, oh no. These kids are hilarious brats trying to take control of their lives. Kaitlin Olson (of It’s Always Sunny fame) stars in and executive produces this underrated show, bringing Sweet Dee’s slightly tamer cousin to Greenwich. It’s a wild ride from start to finish, and the Pembertons aren’t giving you a break for any of it. So watch out.
7. One Day at a Time (Premiered January 6, 2017):
A remake of an old seventies sitcom, this Netflix show instead follows a Cuban-American family. And it’s so funny. I love this family and their dynamic so much. I also love the side characters. Everyone is great (except the dad, he can choke)! Even better, we get to watch the daughter figure out she’s a lesbian and then have a beautiful coming out arc. It also deals a lot with PTSD, as the mother is a veteran. Honestly, this show is so beautiful and wonderful and I’m so glad we’re getting another season in January. I miss them.
Do you agree with any of my choices? What are some of the best shows you watched this year? Tell me about them in the comments!