2016 has brought out the best in television and changed the way both viewers and academics enjoy and analyze the art form. Gone are the days of NBC and CBS dominating the airwaves, as streaming-service-turned-production-network Netflix and premium cable service HBO won major accolades among the Emmys and critics alike. We’ve rounded up some of our favorite shows of the year, just in case you needed a second recommendation.
A surprise hit from Netflix that came with little advertising and marketing would have landed itself on the list for every Emmy nomination if it hadn’t begun streaming literally two months before the ceremony. Stranger Things is what you get when you mix E.T. The Extraterrestrial and Silent Hill. Set in the fictional town of Hawkins, Indiana, the show centers around a group of young boys Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo), Mike (Finn Wolfhard), and Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin) discover psychokinetic girl (Millie Bobby Brown) who claims to know the whereabouts of the missing townsfolk mysteriously disappearing. The show pays homage to the works of George Lucas, Stephen King and Robert Zemeckis. With surprise turns left and right, you’ll probably watch the whole first season and not realize you binged 8 hours of TV in a day. And with Season 2 confirmed for 2017, you’ll have even more to look forward to.
Game of Thrones
HBO’s golden child of programming, Game of Thrones is the Monday morning gossip of “Can you believe John is back?!” and the who’s who of deaths from the night before. Adapted from George R.R. Martin’s acclaimed book series, the series revolves around the lands of Westeros and Essos and follows several subplots of war, deceptions, love, and conflicts among the noble families of the land. Be warned, once you start this show you…will…not…stop! The shows true success comes with how much greater and more grandiose the show becomes as the series progresses. Characters you may fall in love with in the first few seasons might not make it later on, no matter how big their fanbase is. Every week is a surprise and you’ll be hooked by the first episode. The series is only progressing now as fast as George can write, but rest assured that there will be plenty of more episodes to come.
What better way to start a series based on computer hacking then to start the series through on-demand video platforms online. Starring (now Emmy Award Winning) Remi Malek as Elliot Alderson, an introverted cybersecurity engineer, the series focuses on Elliot’s relationship with hacking anarchists who look to destroy corporate control from megacorporation E Corp. There has never been a show like Mr.Robot and at just the write time. It brings to the floor the subjects of mental health (so rarely talked about in a public forum) with real life issues of cybersecurity, national debt and corporate control in a way that is both entertaining and informative. The show has only been running for two seasons, but with a third season already confirmed and plenty more to be revealed, it would be a good time to start this series before it really explodes and you find yourself without a full week to binge the show!