TV That Didn't Suck 2016

In our final installment of Things That Didn't Suck in 2016, we list some of our favorite TV of the year. In case you missed the previous installments, we've covered news, comics, movies, and games too!

Without further ado, here are our top TV picks for 2016!

Charlie Brooker’s Black Mirror is a dark anthology show that looks at current technological trends and socio-political tendencies and pushes them to the extreme, showing our darker side. And yet this year’s episode “San Junipero,” which is likely to be counted among the series’ best, is also its kindest and most hopeful (while still being undeniably a Black Mirror episode). Most importantly, it’s a beautiful tale of two queer women (Mackenzie Davis and Gugu Mbatha-Raw) discovering each other, with amazing, heartfelt acting from both of them. And in year with a record high of LGBTQIAP* characters killed on TV, it was a much-needed respite. (Dominik)

2016 is the year the creators of Welcome to Night Vale expanded upon it with Night Vale Presents, a fiction podcast network that launched three new serialized audio shows. "Alice Isn’t Dead," written by Joseph Fink and voiced by Jasika Nicole, is a story about a woman on a cross-country trip into a supernatural America on the search of her wife. "Within the Wires," written by Jeffrey Craynor and Janina Matthewson and voiced by the latter, is a story of an alternate world and a patient of research facility, subtly told via surreal relaxation cassettes. And finally, "The Orbiting Human Circus (of the Air)" is an absurdist variety show in the style of old radio shows, created by Julian Koster of the Neutral Milk Hotel – voiced by a bevy of guest actors, including Koster himself as Julian the Janitor. All three podcast are terrifically written and performed tales, sure to only increase in quality in 2017. (Dominik)

Despite a dearth of superheroes on TV these days, superheroes almost didn't make it onto this list at all. But despite a somewhat mediocre year in terms of writing, we would be remiss if we didn't mention the really fun and important moments in the CWverse. I mean, there was nothing ground-breaking about the CWverse's giant crossover event, but for all its imperfections, it did what it set out to do: give the CWverse fans their first taste of a CW Justice League. With all four of its powerhouse superhero shows joining forces to fight an alien invasion, the CW also nabbed its best ratings ever for each of these shows. What mostly made the crossover magic were the character interactions. Overall, it was fun, adorable, and sweet, although the crossover event suffered from a lack of real use for Supergirl, who deserved more screen time with her fellow leads Green Arrow and Flash. Still, it was delightful and entertaining, and it was clear all the actors had a blast doing it. We look forward to future crossovers. (Ivonne)

Netflix shows are going to dominate end of the year lists - and rightly so. Between Luke Cage, Stranger Things and so many other titles, new and returning, they’ve proven themselves a worthwhile creator of entertainment. And Voltron: Legendary Defender is among their best 2016 releases. Created by two animation veterans and the studio behind Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra, this remake of a classic US/Japanese cartoon is a fun romp. Featuring a diverse and lovable cast of characters, this tale of rebels opposing an intergalactic empire will bring a welcome respite from the year we’ve had. And Princess Allura is one of the best and most exciting characters of 2016. (Dominik)

Westworld is life. Based on a cheesy (but awesome) 70s film and a Michael Crichton novel, Westworld is the latest in powerhouse HBO’s line of original series. Not only did HBO spend some serious cash (and it shows, as Westworld is visually stunning), but the talent involved was nothing short of phenomenal. Rachel Evan Wood and Thandie Newton star as Hosts (androids) that begin to realize that their world is bullshit. Sir Anthony Hopkins and Ed Harris add to an already-talented cast, but I would be remiss in not mentioning the awesome Jeffrey Wright, who was freaking fabulous as two different characters. This series is about artificial life gaining sentience, but it is also about women who have been violently used deciding they’ve had enough and want to rewrite their stories. These violent delights have violent ends. It should be noted that while off-screen rape happens, and that there is a great deal of both male and female nudity, this isn’t Game of Thrones. Every violent act and every nude scene serves a purpose within the narrative, which is a nice change of pace for HBO. (Ivonne)

Did we miss any TV shows? Let us know some of your favorites in the comments!