High-fives for everyone! As 2013 comes to a close, it’s time to recognize the TV shows and people behind them that have made our jobs worthwhile. We’ve looked back on all the programs we’ve covered this year and picked out the few that we think deserve some special recognition. Check them out below, and feel free to leave your own ‘best of the best’ in the comments.
TV Series Of The Year: USA’s Suits
Television doesn’t get any better than this. Suits has been nearly flawless over three seasons, with a completely fantastic cast including two of the best actors we can think of (Gabriel Macht and Sarah Rafferty), episodes that are so good we’ve actually hurt our hands writing so much about them, and lines that have snuck their way into our daily usage. As a show, it’s an obsession, one of only two shows we’ll re-watch during the season, and the only one that we have to dissect because there’s so much to love. But it also does what our best shows do: it’s gone from being just entertainment to being a part of our lives. We quote it, we worry over it, we have the T-shirts, because Suits is that awesome.
TV Series Of The Year, Pt. 2: CBS’s The Good Wife
We’ve never given out this award twice. Yet we just have to give some extra love to The Good Wife, which has elevated itself to an obsession of its own this season. Alicia Florrick’s (Julianna Margulies) departure from Lockhart/Gardner may be the best thing that’s ever happened to this show; it presented a whole new spate of challenges, and moved away from the love triangle that had run its course. Now Alicia and Cary (Matt Czuchry) are having to start over, Will (Josh Charles) is a man on a hell of a mission, and the writers are balancing even more story potential without short-changing anyone. Weaker shows would crumble under everything The Good Wife has going on. We, on the other hand, can’t get enough of it.
Individual Performance Of The Year: Josh Charles, CBS’s The Good Wife
One of the major reasons we’re so enthralled with The Good Wife this season is because it’s thrown the spotlight on Josh Charles. We could’ve told you he was one of TV’s finest actors 15 years ago, and he’s already earned one Emmy nomination for his role as Will Gardner, but he’s at his absolute best this season. With Will on the warpath, we’ve been able to enjoy scenes that demonstrate many different aspects of Josh’s superlative talent, whether it’s pure power (how many times did you re-watch that desk-clearing scene), comic timing, or his uncanny ability to connect emotionally with the audience. Plus, he directed an episode, too. It’s been a true pleasure to watch someone we already enjoy so much shine even brighter this year.
TV Moment Of The Year: Harvey Specter punches Stephen Huntley, USA’s Suits
We judge this one solely on the strength of our reaction, and that’s why we’re giving the nod to the bathroom brawl at the end of “She’s Mine.” It’s almost never the case that a promo can reveal a moment and have us still excited for it when the episode actually airs. We knew this fistfight was coming and yet, because the show had built it up so perfectly with great writing and a palpable tension between Gabriel Macht‘s Harvey and Max Beesley’s Stephen, we were so amped up over it that our neighbors complained about the noise. That’s right, this was such an awesome scene that we caused a disturbance. How can that not be our TV moment of the year?
TV Development Of The Year: Mark Valley joins ABC’s Body of Proof
You could put Mark Valley in just about anything and we’d watch it. He’s one of those actors that we can always depend on for a great performance. That’s why we were thrilled when it was announced that he was joining ABC’s Body of Proof. As Detective Tommy Sullivan, he got to do everything we love him for, from cracking wise to busting bad guys and even getting the girl. We enjoyed getting to watch him on a weekly basis once again. Unfortunately, his addition wasn’t enough to save the retooled series, which was axed and replaced with the really short-lived Lucky 7. The good news is, Mark’s already landed a new role – he’ll appear on NBC’s upcoming series Crisis.
TV Development Of The Year, Pt. 2: Sports Night begins airing on FXX
It’s not a new TV moment, but we still have to mention how thrilled we were when we discovered that FX’s spin-off channel added our favorite show to its schedule. Sports Night hasn’t been on the air since Comedy Central briefly picked it up following its cancellation 15 years ago. And because it meant so much to us back then, it’s meant a lot to us now to be able to rediscover it, and reflect on how much we still love this show. If you haven’t watched it, please do so. It’s still the best show we’ve ever seen.
Reality TV Series Of The Year: Spike’s Criss Angel BeLIEve
It takes a lot to wrest this away from NBC’s The Voice, but Spike’s Criss Angel BeLIEve did just that. We fell in love with this show from the outset for a number of reasons: 1) It brought magic back to television on a weekly basis; 2) It offered us a perspective on its subject that we hadn’t seen before; and 3) It was just really freaking cool. Getting to see the ambitious demonstrations Criss Angel came up with was great, but it was almost more interesting to be privy to how they were put together, and how much is really required for what we only see as entertainment. The result was less a show and more a journey into professional magic. Our fingers are crossed that BeLIEve comes back for a second season.
Newcomer Of The Year: TNT’s Monday Mornings
Monday Mornings was truly a wonderful piece of television. It proved to be even better than advertised, with absorbing scripts courtesy of TV stalwart David E. Kelley and a great writing team, and those episodes were brought to life by a talented ensemble ranging from known names such as the amazing Jamie Bamber to pleasant surprises like Keong Sim. Through the doctors at Chelsea General Hospital, we were not only treated to entertaining medical drama, but also prompted to examine our own thoughts and feelings toward a number of issues. Unfortunately, the network didn’t see Monday Mornings the way we did, and cancelled it after the first season. This is one of those shows we’re going to regret losing.
With our accolades handed out, we officially close the books on television for 2013. Stay tuned on Friday, as we’ll preview the four shows you don’t want to miss in 2014. Until then, Happy New Year!