Ah, Thanksgiving. The time of year when we gather together to stuff ourselves — and a turkey — silly and slip into tryptophan-induced comas with our pants unbuttoned. Oh yeah, and give thanks! Well, having gorged on television all year long, we here at BuddyTV would like to express our gratitude for the things we’re most thankful for this year on TV.
So heat up some cider, pause the DVR and dig into what our writers are thanking their lucky TV stars for:
I’m thankful for … the final season of Lost. I know it’s not cool to like the way Lost ended, but I thought it was amazing. Uplifting, tragic and totally within the themes of the show, Lost gave exactly what I wanted in a way few shows could. It may not have answered every question, but Lost answered the important ones in a way so beautiful that I don’t care so much about the rest of it.
I’m thankful for … Chuck‘s embrace of a long-denied relationship. Most TV shows, when faced with a will-they-or-won’t-they relationship, keep the characters apart as long as possible. But Chuck let Chuck and Sarah give into their long-denied love this year. Not only that, but we’ve gotten to see the relationship grow and change. Finally, a successful example of romance on television!
I’m thankful for … Kyle Massey on Dancing with the Stars. Pretty much no one over the age of 15 had heard of Kyle Massey before this fall. And then he danced. The guy we all expected to fizzle out within a few episodes became the explosive star of Dancing with the Stars. And he was good! Funny, friendly and ridiculously talented, Kyle Massey became everyone’s pick for greatness, even after the dancing ended.
I’m thankful for … Louis C.K. Between his arc on Parks and Recreation as Dave the cop, his new show on FX, Louie, which moves between gut-busting humor and gut-wrenching pathos so easily and genuinely that the only word I can use to describe it is “brilliant,” and his massive sold-out comedy tour, 2010 was Louis C.K.’s year, and I couldn’t be happier for him. I’m thankful that FX not only gave this very funny comedian his own show, but trusted him enough to give him free reign on it. The move paid off better than they could have expected — the show is almost unbearably good.
I’m thankful for … Dan Harmon, and his Twitter feed. I have two things to thank Dan Harmon for: Making Community my favorite show of 2010, and, even when the show isn’t on, being a constant source of entertainment via his Twitter account. Harmon is a trailblazer of sorts when it comes to using the site to interact with his fans (and insult his detractors, which is often even funnier). He posts all sorts of things, from behind-the-scenes photos and videos and insightful plot commentary to poop jokes, always in a refreshingly candid and casual way. Last week he even incorporated the name of his #1 Twitter troll into the show as Jeff’s date, “Gwynnifer.” It was a clever little wink on a clever, ever-winking show that has mastered how to use the internet to fill out its world (all the characters have their own Twitter accounts, too), and I can’t get enough of it.
I’m thankful for … The Walking Dead. It was about time zombies finally got their own TV series. It’s the big, fat cherry on top that AMC’s The Walking Dead is riveting, well-acted, expertly produced and awesomely gross. I’ve finally found my Sunday night companion-piece to Dexter: double the suspense, double the death! I would lament that season 1 is only six episodes, but this is about what we’re thankful for, not what we’re whining about. And I’m just thankful The Walking Dead exists and is already renewed for season 2 — whenever that happens.
I’m thankful for … Cougar Town‘s title. After a lot of discussion about changing the show’s title due to the fact that it has nothing to do with cougars anymore, Cougar Town kept the title but decided to poke a little fun at itself by having new commentary in every title sequence mocking the title. Every week there’s a cool little inside joke, a nice side dish of cranberry sauce to make the rest of the show that much sweeter.
I’m thankful for … Cancer. It’s a terrible disease, but thanks to the brilliant new Showtime comedy The Big C, cancer was somehow hilarious. The crisp writing and Emmy-worthy performance by Laura Linney helped do the impossible by making something so bad feel so good, just like a third slice of pumpkin pie.
I’m thankful for … Mark Sheppard. Best known as Battlestar Galactica‘s Romo Lampkin among many, many other roles, Sheppard had a great 2010 with great recurring roles on Chuck, Leverage and Warehouse 13, plus a recently expanded role on Supernatural. Like gravy on turkey, Sheppard makes everything better, and with the recent news that he’ll be playing a huge role in the upcoming season of Doctor Who, I am very thankful that he is apparently trying to appear on every show that I love.
I’m thankful for … Pregnancy as seen on TV. Thanks to shows like ABC Family’s The Secret Life of the American Teenager and MTV’s 16 and Pregnant and Teen Mom, as well as new Real Housewife of Atlanta Phaedra Parks, I feel no need to run out and purchase a copy of What to Expect When You’re Expecting. Everything I need to know about pregnancy I’m learning from TV! Important lessons like: Don’t get knocked up in high school, don’t punch your baby daddy on national television (or ever, for that matter), don’t impregnate the ex-girlfriend of the guy who impregnated your girlfriend, do try to remember when your actual due date is, and don’t participate in an awkward pregnancy photo shoot involving pickles. Phaedra also taught me that a doctor will in fact induce labor for a perfectly healthy woman and child at six freakin’ months. What a hilarious, tangled web we weave, Phaedra.
I’m thankful for … the Weeds season 6 finale. Sure, it totally confounded me, as past season finale cliffhangers had, but I felt like the writers and creator Jenji Kohan had finally written themselves — and Nancy — into an incredibly compelling corner they couldn’t feasibly write themselves out of (without the help of aliens or “It was all just a dream!” scenarios). And I really can’t wait to see how they weasel their way out of this one — somehow I think handing over evidence against a drug kingpin won’t get you out of a murder you’ve confessed to, Nancy. Plus, with the very real possibility looming that season 7 may be the shows’ last (tear!), I’m waiting on pins and needles for the premiere.
I’m thankful for … Top Chef: Just Desserts. As a longtime Top Chef fan (oh the agony waiting for the Dec. 1 All-Stars premiere!), I knew I would tune into the sweetened version of the show just to see what the producers had whipped up. But I was oh-so-amused with the disco-dust bedazzled spectacle that is Top Chef: Just Desserts. Thanks to crazypants Seth’s nervous breakdowns (plural!) over the red hots “for [his] mommy” and not being able to find his paper cups — which actually got him kicked off the show — Zac’s obsession with shiny objects, Morgan’s shoe fetish and Yigit’s onomatopoeia name and deserving win, this show had all the makings of a sugary sweet superstar of a show with way more drama (and buttercream) than the original.
What are you thankful for on television this year? Let us know in the comments below!
(Images courtesy of ABC, FX and Bravo)