My Noodle

My Top 10 Favorite TV Shows

Here are my top 10 favorite TV shows. They are in no particular order, but I will start with my favorite…

The Blacklist

My own description:

The number 1 on the FBI Most Wanted List turns himself into the FBI with an offer they can’t refuse, to become a high value informant for the FBI. The catch? He will only talk to Elizabeth Keen.

Why I love it:

Jon Bokenkamp, the designer of this series, is brilliant. There are clues in the pilot that actually tell you almost everything you need to know to answer many of the questions of this series. It takes you on a ride through both the mind of the criminal and the potential corruption of the good guys. Just when you think you’ve figured it out, you find out you’re wrong. So wrong.

The main question of this series is asked in the pilot, “Who the hell is Elizabeth Keen?” To even start figuring that one out, you have to first figure who Raymond Reddington is. I have thought I’ve known multiple times. I now think I know who they both are again, but we’ll see.

I keep watching it over and over again, looking for more clues. If I ever have a long chunk of time, I want to get all the scripts and tear it apart. It’s that fascinating to me.

Lucifer

My own description:

Heaven’s rebellious son is now rebelling against Hell and moves to Los Angeles for a vacation, only to find himself involved with a beautiful detective, and is dared to grow.

Why I love it:

I’ve always loved to think about God, in its many forms, and the things that many religions hold to be true. I’ve had a problem with Hell because it’s considered “eternal punishment.” To my mind, if punishment is eternal, it’s not punishment. It’s vengeance. With no opportunity for redemption, why bother?

Lucifer is a story of redemption, and the redemption of the biggest bad guy in history. And not just his redemption, but the theme of redemption infuses the sub-plots as well. Angels, demons, corrupt cops, and conflicted forensic scientists. All are called to grow. I love that.

Plus, it’s just really fun to watch the Devil try to live in this world when he just can’t understand that no one really believes he’s the Devil.

The season 5 finale ends with a cliffhanger that many religious types will find offensive. But there is another season, and I suspect the biggest growth, and the final act of redemption is yet to come.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer

My own description:

After the movie where a shallow cheerleader is called to become a Vampire Slayer, Buffy thinks that she has avoided that fate, only to find that the fates have conspired against her. She cannot avoid her destiny, and must save the world, again.

Why I love it:

It’s very campy with really big issues being addressed. It’s just plain fun. And it’s fun to see this little blond woman kicking ass all the time while punning as she does it.

All of the characters grow. They start out as kids and visibly grow as the series goes on. Each character has their own demons to deal with and we get to watch it all.

And I know the fight is about who is Buffy’s great love, Angel or Riley. Her relationship with both of them were purely romantic. Both sought to protect her in that romantic, you man you, way, and with Riley, Buffy sought to protect him. Neither relationship was equal. Falling in love just keeps you next to the person while you figure out if you can love them, for real. There was nothing of the romantic in her relationship with Spike, on her side at least, but with them they had a partnership, a trust, an affection… they were a team. They were equals, both in strength and in mental capacity. Of the three of them, it would have been Spike.

Dollhouse

My own description:

A woman, who was just trying to do the right thing, is on the hook for an act that was considered terrorism, when she is made an offer. A clean slate for 5 years of her life that she will never remember.

Why I love it:

Dollhouse has a great primal question, “Can a person, of their own free will, choose slavery.”

This series delves into topics of what it means to be a person, personal responsibility, the depths of cruelty and corruption, and morality. I can see why it got canceled. The premise is hard to take. It’s hard to think about. Especially with humankind’s history with not only slavery, but also indentured servitude, which is what the Dollhouse is.

Deep that it is, it’s still a fun ride. And is actually quite hilarious.

Firefly

My own description:

A crew of space smugglers battle the establishment, and themselves.

Why I love it:

Great characterization, fun stories, and some really crazy stuff. Josh Whedon is a master of the ensemble picture. He also did Buffy and Dollhouse, along with The Avengers. This is a cult classic and I’m so sad it got canceled.

Strange Luck

My own description:

A man discovers he has all the luck in the world, both good and bad.

Why I love it:

You’d think he’d go hog wild with that luck, but what he finds is that nature wants balance. He uses this luck to help people, but he has to be very careful with it. No lottery tickets for him. He drives a beat-up car due to all the accidents, and helping pregnant women give birth is a fairly typical daily activity for him.

You will never see this. It has disappeared. I’ve been looking for it everywhere. There isn’t even any DVDs.

Supernatural

My own description:

Two traumatized brothers with daddy issues fight the forces of darkness.

Why I love it:

Like with Lucifer, I love the religion aspect of this series. They go to great lengths to get it right. This series is loaded with primal questions and themes. But they the series doesn’t take itself seriously, in fact it is funny as Hell (ha ha) in many places.

You’ll need to get past the pilot. I watched the pilot and wasn’t interested. It was years before I tried again. Now I watch it over and over, looking for more clues and information.

My favorite line of Dean’s when the angel Castile tells him God will be unhappy about something?

“Well, if you do see him, you tell him I’m coming for him next.”

The Walking Dead

My own description:

Zombie apocalypse! But that’s not what it’s about. This show is about humanity, and how we lose our humanity. The zombies are just catalyst.  

Why I love it:

Because the primal question is not “do we lose our humanity”, of course we lose our humanity. All you have to do is see how people act whenever anything goes wrong to see that. The question is: “How do we lose our humanity.” This series has many characters, all of whom deal with this question in different ways. The series could probably go on forever because there are so many different people. But all good things must end.

I got to the finale of season six, where we met Negan and Lucile, his barbed wire bat, and I lost it. Someday I will beat the editor of that episode. They edited it for maximum emotional impact, and I noticed it too late. I was psychically wounded by that episode. I do want to go back but I’m scared.

100

My own description:

After the end of the world, a space ark of people sends 100 “criminals” (kids with problems) to ascertain if the earth is safe to populate again.

Why I love it:

This series is about power. Getting it, having it, dealing with it, and being responsible for it. It is brutal and real, in many ways. If you ever wondered what it’s like to be at the top, why some choices are made, this is your series.

I want to get back to this series soon. I got to an episode that is forcing the main character to make a very hard decision. A life and death decision. And it got to me. I don’t know if I want to watch the resolution. Like The Walking Dead, I’m scared.

Good Witch

My own description:

A “good witch” who owns a bed and breakfast in an idyllic town helps everyone around her.

Why I love it:

I started watching it because there was a “Witch” in the title, and I like supernatural things. But I continued watching because the people on the series have real problems, but they always find good ways to resolve them. This is a series that helped me keep a bit of hope in my life.

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