My Favorite TV of 2018 (in no particular order)

Bodyguard

  • Carrier: Netflix

  • Family Friendly: No

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 92%

It’s actually not a Netflix show, but BBC. Netflix agreed to distribution rights outside of the UK and Ireland which is why their logo gets to be all over it. This is a high tension show that kept me guessing. The moment I thought I knew where the plot was going, it completely changed. Before the show was launched on Netflix, it actually broke records becoming the most-watched drama in the U.K. since current records began.


Barry

  • Carrier: HBO

  • Family Friendly: No

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 99%

Bill Hader plays a hitman struggling with PTSD who moves his entire life to LA to join an acting class. Each episode runs about 30 minutes long which is the perfect amount of time for something this hilariously dark.


Queer Eye

  • Carrier: Netflix

  • Family Friendly: Yes (with the exception of some language in early Season 1. They seemed to cut it out mid-season and calmed the language down in what I think was an attempt to be more family friendly.)

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 92%

This is easily one of the best shows I’ve watched this year. Unless you’ve been under a rock, you’ve probably seen or heard of it too. In each episode, what seems like a superficial makeover in actuality becomes a powerful attempt to break down common toxic masculinity norms. At the end of each episode, the five guys sit down and intentionally speak life and encouragement into the person they’ve spent the week with. Showing men crying together and allowing other men to call out their potential is insanely powerful and feels somewhat intimate, which highlights how uncommon it is in our culture. Another bonus is that you’ll master a french tuck and pay arguably too much attention to patterned button ups.


Killing Eve

  • Carrier: BBC, Currently Streaming on Hulu

  • Family Friendly: No

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 97%

Sandra Oh plays an MI5 officer who is tasked with finding a psychopathic hit-woman. The closer she gets, the more obsessed they become with each other. It’s beautiful, thrilling and Jodie Comer can be truly terrifying.


Schitt’s Creek Season 4

  • Carrier: POP, Currently Streaming on Netflix

  • Family Friendly: Yes/No. This is borderline. There is a bit of language, but not much.

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 100%

If you’re unfamiliar with Schitt’s Creek, you should really fix that ASAP. Created by Eugene Levy and his son, Daniel Levy, it’s a hilarious story about a wealthy family who loses almost everything and how they acclimate to the real world. If you’re familiar with their comedy, the pairing of Eugene Levy and Katherine O’ Hara should be enough have you immediately turning it on. The writing is hilarious and although a little slapstick at times, Dan Levy’s acting has made me laugh out loud so much more than I expected. Not only is it actually funny, but Season 4’s “Open Mic Night” was one of the most endearing things I’ve seen in a while. It’s incredibly refreshing to follow a same sex relationship without even acknowledging the trials of being one. Schitt’s Creek does an excellent job normalizing these relationships and allowing us to root for David and Patrick with a fun, pop culture moment.


Black Mirror: Bandersnatch

  • Carrier: Netflix

  • Family Friendly: No

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 92%

It’s no secret I love Black Mirror and while this wasn’t my favorite Black Mirror episode, this one was pretty groundbreaking in that it was a choose your own adventure episode. It took me about an hour and a half to finish the episode completing all but a couple alternate endings. Throughout the episode you’re prompted to help make decisions for the main character that start with simply choosing what cereal to begin the day with and end up becoming morally compromising as you’re choosing between whether to kill or who should jump off a building. It’s full of Black Mirror references and is an absolute trip!


The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Season 2

  • Carrier: Amazon Prime

  • Family Friendly: No (due to language)

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 91%

I would go so far as to say season 2 is even better than season 1. The dialogue is sharper, more clever and the plot moves forward as she pursues her secret career in stand up comedy while balancing traditional gender roles of the 1950s.


YOU

  • Carrier: Lifetime, Currently Streaming on Netflix

  • Family Friendly: No

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 91%

Think Dexter mixed with a little bit of Pretty Little Liars (or the more obvious, Gossip Girl). It’s smart, intriguing, terrifying, sexy and makes you completely rethink the use of social media.


Sharp Objects

  • Carrier: HBO

  • Family Friendly: No

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 92%

Based on the Gillian Flynn novel, the show is a slow burn. Amy Adams takes us into a world of self harm, alcoholism, chid abuse and all kinds of dark layers. There are trigger warnings all over the place with this show although it’s incredibly well done.


Hannah Gadsby’s Nanette

  • Carrier: Netflix

  • Family Friendly: No

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 100%

This is the first stand up special that brought me to tears, not out of laughter but out of inspiration and raw emotion. Hannah Gadsby delivers a perfect set that earned all of the buzz it got this year.


Forever

  • Carrier: Amazon Prime

  • Family Friendly: No

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 94%

This series caught my attention because when press was invited to screenings, they were given strict instructions to not reveal anything about the show including plot, setting, and time period. It was kept super secret but once you get a couple episodes in, it’s clear why it was so under wraps. At 30 minutes long with only 8 episodes, it’s easy to get through it. At its heart, it’s about love, stasis and change. That’s about all I can give away.


Haunting of Hill House

  • Carrier: Netflix

  • Family Friendly: No

  • Rotten Tomatoes: 92%

I wrote a post a while back on what parents should know, but that doesn’t diminish how much I enjoyed it. It’s a refreshing take on an old story and is filled with all the right kinds of scares.