Billie's Best of 2012

This has been an interesting year for me, tube-wise. This site has gotten so big (which is freaking wonderful, don't get me wrong) that watching everything that our writers are covering has become impossible. But the writers on this site are also responsible for getting me into a bunch of shows that I'd never tried before; they're awesome. (The writers, not the shows. Okay, the writers and the shows.)

So here's my best of 2012 offering.

They never sit on my DVR

Several members of this site aren't all that happy with The Vampire Diaries this fall, but I'm still loving the twisty turny vampire melodrama to death. Is it what's happened to Elena that's bumming people out (she said carefully, trying not to spoil anyone who hasn't tried the show yet)? I am finding Elena's new tribulations intriguing, if only because her current situation is pushing her toward my favorite vampire, and it's probably easy to guess who that is. And Klaus's obsession with Caroline makes me smile, which is odd considering that he's powerful, unkillable and utterly vicious, while Caroline is... well, so wonderfully Caroline.

The Walking Dead is simply awesome. There's something about this show that gets to me, big time. I'm currently rewatching season one, and it's upsetting how many characters have already died. And yet, it's the hope that these people will live on and make a life for themselves somehow that keeps me watching. I've even redecorated that cell block in my head for them, sort of like an imaginary dollhouse.

(The Talking Dead is also awesome. It helps me decompress from the heaviness of The Walking Dead, and some of its features, like "In Memoriam", inevitably make me laugh out loud.)

Breaking Bad has been, and still is, freaking brilliant. I finally broke down and reviewed the whole thing this year, and when you look at the show as a critic and not just as a viewer, it's even more brilliant. It deserves every accolade it has gotten, and the only negative thing I have to say about it is that the suits at AMC deserve the stockade for making us wait nearly a year for the final run of episodes.

I try sitcoms now and then, but I'm not a sitcom person and most of them don't stick. The Big Bang Theory did, though. Big Bang just makes me laugh; I relate to it. Gee, I don't know why a comedy about science fiction nerds should work for me. It's a mystery.

Old faves

Of course, shows that I'm actively reviewing don't sit on the DVR either, although one of them might if I weren't reviewing it. (I'm talking about you, Revolution.) It's funny how my old faves are getting, shall we say, seriously long in the tooth. I never expected any of them to last this long, but I'm not looking gift horses in the mouth. (And hey, those two metaphors go together -- teeth, mouth, I'm on a roll.)

Supernatural, now in its eighth season, doesn't blow me away any more, although I still love the show and will not stop watching and reviewing until it's over no matter how long it lasts. (At this rate, it might be around until 2016, or until Jensen and Jared collapse from exhaustion.)

Dexter, which didn't do so well in 2011, had a fabulous seventh season this fall that shook up the story and took it in a new direction. I've heard that next season is their last, even though it hasn't been officially announced; I hope that it is so that the writers can give us a real, actual, planned way in advance ending.

Justified had an excellent third season, too. I'm looking forward to what Timothy Olyphant and company have in store for us in just a couple of weeks.

I rewatched the original La Femme Nikita this summer, after several years of staying away from it, and I still love it. Sorry to say that I also tried the new Nikita, not once but twice, and couldn't get past the first season. That might not be the new Nikita's fault. I'm probably still a bit stuck on Roy Dupuis; he's a tough act to follow.

True Blood, I'm sorry to say, is losing me. I thought it was a good thing that they were leaving the books behind this past summer. But the thing is, while True Blood is still entertaining, it feels like it lacks foundation; it's like eating dessert without having dinner first. I'm still planning to watch and review next season, its sixth, but the show is just not wowing me any more.

New to me, or the Downton Abbey/Teen Wolf double feature

When ChrisB decided to review Downton Abbey, I thought it was time to give it a try. I'd been putting it off, and quite honestly, it didn't look that appealing from the outside; I couldn't understand why everyone was so bonkers about it. Well, now I know, and I'm bonkers about it, too. Exceptional characters, incredible acting, intelligent and compelling storytelling, and Maggie Smith makes me howl with laughter. Can't wait for season three to reach our shores.

Panda reviewed the second season of Teen Wolf recently, and I had it on my list to try, too. So when Dan and I started watching Downton Abbey, we decided to try Teen Wolf -- and we loved it. Teen Wolf is somewhat Buffyesque -- romantic, outrageous, humorous, twisty and entertaining, and Colton Haynes's confused character Jackson had me howling with laughter, too. Although he's not exactly in the same league as Maggie Smith.

So basically, Dan and I had a Downton Abbey/Teen Wolf double feature nearly every evening for a few weeks. Not two shows that are usually experienced together, I dare say. Thanks, Chris. Thanks, Panda.

Looking forward

As Sunbunny already said so well, it's been such a delight this year finally seeing Joss Whedon achieve the fame and notoriety he so richly deserves. I've reviewed all four of his television series (two of which were way too short), and I'm looking forward to number five, S.H.I.E.L.D. (which I hate putting periods in between the letters because it's a pain to type, but I'd better get used to it).

However, my recent experiences with a new "new Lost" every fall have convinced me that no matter how something looks from the outside, you just can't tell how it will grab you. (I'm talking about you, Revolution; you're no Downton Abbey. You're not even Teen Wolf.) I'm hoping that another show that I'll love like Buffy or Supernatural will come down the pike soon. And that's the great thing about television, isn't it? A new love affair is probably just around the corner.

Happy new year!

Billie

12 comments:

ChrisB said...

I'm so glad you're enjoying Downton Abbey. I've been fanatical about it since the start and I love it when I can convince others of its brilliance.

Interestingly, there is not a lot of overlap in the shows we watch. I gave up on True Blood a while ago and I am one of the members who isn't happy about where The Vampire Diaries is headed.

I think I'm enjoying Revolution much more than you are, but that may just be because I have a massive crush on Miles...

celticmarc said...

Quoting you :

"Okay, the writers and the shows." And this site, and the comments, and all of us.

Shame on me, I don't watch The BB Theory. Add that to the list why I'm such a living paradox...

SOB ! I ALREADY have a huge list of TV shows that I watch, and of course, temptation is here to go peek at others. But don't "they" say that we spend way to much time in front of the tube ? (or computer nowadays)

2013 will mark the end of Community and Fringe. And Dexter, supposedly. Already saddened.

HellBlazerRaiser said...

it's like eating dessert without having dinner first.

But most times dessert is the best part of the meal!!!

I skip right to dessert many many any times!!!

PlatinumRosebud said...

Allo, Billie.

It's great that you liked Teen Wolf, too.
I love this show and will probably watch it till it ends its run.

Fringe, I will truly miss when it ends its run.

I'm with you regarding Nikita's Michael. Roy Dupuis is indeed a tough act to follow. One of a kind, that guy. :)

I'm wondering if Frank Spotnitz can get Roy to be included in the cast of Hunted which is supposedly to be revived in the US. It would be awesome.

Happy Holidays, Billie.
Wish you well. :)

Dean said...


I've been reading Billie Doux for years, though I've never commented before now, and it's always been one of my favourite websites to visit. My thanks to all the writers for their hard work.

And I just love that you're still hung up on Buffy after all this time. Nothing will ever top it for me.

Would you consider covering Parks and Recreation one day? I think that's a really great show with a lot of heart.

Happy New Year!

Juliette said...

I'm all about the vampires at the moment, still enjoying both True Blood and the Vampire Diaries! The next few weeks will be all about Spartacus though...

Anonymous said...

I'm kinda torn about VD..What's happening with Elena is depressing even if I like her with you know who..But Bonnie has an interesting storyline..at last.
Anna

JimGfromWI said...

Since I discovered this site, a couple years ago, I've been so far behind in TV watching it's hard to keep up with the current shows I watched - this site is basically everything I love (except Glee) and when I finish a show, I pick another from that huge list on the left, so thank you all for getting me hooked on all these great shows. Except Glee. I will never, ever watch Glee - so sorry. My faves in your list are The Walking Dead - probably my favorite show of all, Dexter, True Blood, Downton Abbey, Revolution, and Arrow - which I didn't see on your list. I will have to try Vampire Diaries at some point - but, as I said, I have so much to watch as it is. A nice problem to have, considering that most of what's on TV isn't that great. Bring back Lost! Happy New Year everybody!

Anonymous said...

Still laughing at the juxtaposition of Teen Wolf and Downton Abbey, Billie!

Since you like both shows - have you seen the Downton/Breaking Bad crossover on YouTube? A lot of it went over my head as I'm too wimpy to give Breaking Bad a try, but I think you might enjoy it.

Gavrielle

Billie Doux said...

Hey, Dean -- Parks and Recreation is certainly a possibility; we'll keep it in mind, and thanks so much for sticking with us for so long.

Thanks for the heads up on the YouTube, Gavrielle. I've never heard of it but it sounds wonderful.

Mark Greig said...

I am no fan of Downton (just ask Paul) but that parody still had me in stitches. You should definitely check it out as soon as possible, Billie.

ChrisB said...

Teen Wolf came up last night as one of the ten that Netflix recommended that I watch. I remembered you saying, Billie, how much you liked it so I watched the first two episodes this morning.

While I really enjoyed the show, I have to say that the juxtaposition of Teen Wolf and Downton Abbey is one of my favorite pairings ever. Yet another reason we all love television so much.

:-)