Year-End Lists

Notable, browsable lists of the year's best music, movies, books, and TV shows. Year-end lists are fingerprints; aggregate statistics are smudges. Therefore, we make no tallies. Follow the link for each list to see essential commentary from its authors, at the source.

2017 TV Shows

David Wiegand: 10 Best TV Shows of 2017

11 January 2018

David Wiegand: 10 Best TV Shows of 2017, as published by The San Francisco Chronicle. This year it “includes only shows that premiered in 2017.”

[see also 2016]

Emily VanDerWerff: 18 Best TV Shows of 2017

11 January 2018

Emily VanDerWerff: 18 Best TV Shows of 2017, “an 18-way tie,” as published by Vox

[see also 2018]

Andy Greenwald: Top Ten TV Shows of 2017

09 January 2018

Andy Greenwald: Top Ten TV Shows of 2017, as posted to Twitter

  1. Twin Peaks: The Return
  2. The Young Pope
  3. The Leftovers
  4. The Deuce
  5. Glow
  6. Mindhunter
  7. Top of the Lake: China Girl
  8. Insecure
  9. The Good Place
  10. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Mercury News: Best TV Shows of 2017

03 January 2018

San Jose Mercury News: Best TV Shows of 2017

[see also 2018]

  1. Big Little Lies
  2. Better Things
  3. The Leftovers
  4. The Handmaid’s Tale
  5. Mindhunter
  6. Feud: Bette and Joan
  7. Game of Thrones
  8. The Good Place
  9. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
  10. The Deuce

Esquire: Best TV Shows of 2017

30 December 2017

Esquire: Best TV Shows of 2017

[see also 2018, 2010s]

  1. Twin Peaks: The Return
  2. Big Little Lies
  3. The Handmaid’s Tale
  4. The Good Place
  5. The Leftovers
  6. Master of None
  7. The Deuce
  8. The Vietnam War
  9. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
  10. At Home with Amy Sedaris
  11. GLOW
  12. The Crown
  13. Mr. Robot
  14. Better Call Saul
  15. This Is Us
  16. Mindhunter
  17. Will & Grace
  18. The Punisher
  19. Legion
  20. The Good Fight
  21. American Gods
  22. Game of Thrones
  23. Feud: Bette and Joan
  24. Girls
  25. Riverdale

Noel Murray: 20 Best TV Shows of 2017

22 December 2017

Noel Murray: 20 Best TV Shows of 2017, as published by The Verge

[see also 2018]

David Bianculli: Best TV of 2017

22 December 2017

David Bianculli: Best TV of 2017 (as aired on NPR’s Fresh Air)

[see also 2018]

  1. Better Call Saul
  2. Godless
  3. Curb Your Enthusiasm
  4. Fargo
  5. Legion
  6. Mindhunter
  7. Black Mirror
  8. The Americans
  9. The Good Place
  10. Big Little Lies
  11. The Deuce
  12. The Handmaid’s Tale

Entertainment Weekly: Best TV Shows of 2017

19 December 2017

Entertainment Weekly: Best TV Shows of 2017

[see also 2016]

  1. GLOW
  2. Twin Peaks: The Return
  3. Big Little Lies
  4. The Good Place
  5. Rick and Morty
  6. Insecure
  7. The Handmaid’s Tale
  8. DuckTales
  9. American Crime
  10. Mr. Robot

Emily Nussbaum: Definitely Not a Top Ten List

18 December 2017

Writing in The New Yorker, Emily Nussbaum provides this wisdom about lists:

Each December, I write a festive rant about my loathing for Top Ten lists. It’s always the same: lists are reductive, phony, anti-art. Online, they work first as clickbait, then as groupthink. They force critics to rate radically dissimilar projects—the epic, the dramedy, the sleek time-killer, the ambitious game-changer that doesn’t quite cohere—so that algorithms can crunch out a blandly universal must-see selection. I don’t like math, and if I knew anything about how numbers worked I wouldn’t have gone into arts criticism. Plus, I haven’t seen all the TV, and neither have you.

After some important caveats and context, she offers these favorite TV shows:

[see also 2019, 2018]

  1. The Leftovers

Daily Beast: 20 Best TV Shows of 2017

18 December 2017

The Daily Beast: 20 Best TV Shows of 2017

  1. Big Little Lies
  2. The Handmaid’s Tale
  3. The Leftovers
  4. Better Things
  5. Veep
  6. Insecure
  7. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
  8. This Is Us
  9. Girls
  10. Jimmy Kimmel Live!
  11. The Good Place
  12. Search Party
  13. American Vandal
  14. Game of Thrones
  15. One Day at a Time
  16. The Deuce
  17. Claws
  18. The Good Fight
  19. Will & Grace
  20. The Real Housewives of New York City