Best ___ Of 2017: Some Really Specific Superlatives

We thought 2016 was bad. Guess what? We were all freaking wrong. 2017 was a dumpster fire of its own. The nightmare administration, disgusting politicians attempting to pass horrific laws, KKK rallies, multiple earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, wildfires, and The Mindy Project coming to an end – it was all very, very bad. Which is why we’re here to celebrate the best things to come out of 2017. It’s time for our annual list of superlatives, and hopefully we’ll all gain perspective from this list about the past year.

 

Best Candid Group Celebrity Photo: Moonlight Mixup

Celebrities: They’re Just Like Us. So much to look at in this photo, which will forever live in Hollywood infamy. Fun fact: Busy Philipps’ husband got her a large framed version of this for Christmas. She obvs had to give one to her BFF Michelle, too.

Best New Life Motto From a Politician: “Reclaiming My Time”

Finding inspiration from California Representative Maxine Waters, the two of us decided that our official motto of 2018 is “Reclaiming My Time”. From life, from work, from politics, from everything. Let this not be a year where you sit back and let folks mansplain to you.

Best Shady Company Twitter Account: Merriam-Webster

Never thought I’d be praising a dictionary’s internet account, but here we are. Give this social media person a raise. It’s the perfect way to call out the administration without actually straight out calling out the administration.

Best New Show That’s Actually Been a Hit For Years But I Joined So Late To The Party: The Great British Bake-Off

I binged all of GBBO this summer and it did NOT disappoint. I realized y’all (including Molly) had been singing its praises for a while, but when you’re unemployed and find baking mesmerizing and soothing to watch, it’s inevitable you’ll fall in love with this bunch. And also pretend you’re a baker too.

Best Pregnancy Announcement Featuring Florals: Beyonce

No explanation needed.

Best Celebrity Insta Story: Busy Philipps

Ready.

A post shared by Busy Philipps (@busyphilipps) on

You know her from Freaks and Geeks, or White Chicks, or Dawson’s Creek, or even Cougartown, but you should know Busy Philipps from her Instagram stories that are entertaining beyond entertaining. She’s a mom of 2 girls, a fitness fan (#lekfit), and an actress who might not be an actress anymore. She’s *relatable* and funny and guyyysss, you just have to check it out for yourself.

Best TV Revival We Didn’t Need But Was Actually Pretty Good: Will & Grace

I will be the first to tell you that a Will & Grace revival was not necessary. I was a fan of the show when it was on, but there was really no legit reason for it to return besides the fact nostalgia makes companies money these days. And the series finale canon. THE CANON WAS BROKEN AND THROWN OUT THE WINDOW. I do not enjoy when shows/movies do not follow canon. After a shaky first episode back, they found their footing in the second episode and it’s been fantastic ever since. The creators, writers, and actors seem like they never took a nearly decade-long break, and the tone is exactly the same as it used to be. In a world where everything seems to suck, this show is a welcome relief.

Best Display of Arts & Crafts in Honor of The Resistance : The Women’s March

So. Many. Good. Signs.

Best Author To Happen To Streaming TV: Margaret Atwood

If there’s one good thing I can say about 2017 it’s that the coolest woman in television was a 78-year-old Canadian author. With the one-two punch of Alias Grace on Netflix and The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu, we had Margaret’s interpretation of one society long before ours and another slightly after … and both looked a lot like our own. They watch really well as companion pieces, by the way.  Keep up the good work, Mags. Cat’s Eye on Amazon Prime 2020, perhaps?

Best Real-Life Hallmark Movie: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s Engagement

Some might say that it’s silly to care about foreign figureheads using taxpayer money to throw an enormous wedding, but 2017 was a steaming cesspool of a year and I’d like to have this one thing, please. We wrote about this already, but a biracial American actress with middle-class roots getting engaged to a prince – while he cooked for her! – and they’ll live in a cottage! – is the stuff low-budget romcoms are made of and I am HERE. FOR. IT.

Best Celebrity Vacation: Obama’s Post-Presidential Blast

In January 2017, we were all kind of cold and sad and Obama was, like, kite-sailing on billionaire islands with a smile that could light up the whole White House and looking like that person who really *thrives* after a breakup.

Best Viral Revolution: #MeToo

Fall 2017: when our favorite hobby was watching dirtbag producers, news anchors and celebrities get ripped to pieces. This one calls for a Michael Jackson popcorn gif:

But before Hollywood’s reckoning, thousands of normal folks were using #MeToo to give voice to the stuff we all knew was going on.

Best Wedding Dress I Could Never Pull Off : Serena Williams

I don’t necessarily want to see celebrity wedding dresses that I’d totally wear; instead, I love when they wear gorgeous creations that I could absolutely never pull off. Cue Serena Williams’ giant cloud by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen. You know you look good when your bridesmaid is Venus Williams in a stunning ivory gown and you aren’t even worried about it.

Best Unexpected Gay Icon: The Babadook

Babadook-ook-ook. We watched the movie and discussed it here.

Best Physical Comedy (Political Division): Melissa McCarthy as Sean Spicer

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Ranking The New Crop Of TV Shows: 2017 Edition

Fall is here, and so is our annual Back To TV Week! Listen. There are good TV years, and there are bad TV years. 1994 saw the premieres of Friends, E.R., Party of Five and The Magic School bus, for instance. Alas, this is not Back to 1994 week, and let’s just say the cable and network offerings of 2017 are a bit more checkered. That’s why we’re using the red light/green light approach: shows that probably are not worth your time get a red light. Shows you might want to give a shot depending on what you’re into get the yellow light. Green light shows could still end up disappointing us, but they deserve a chance.

9JKL

Airs: Mondays, 8:30/7:30c, CBS

Premise: Mark Feuerstein lives in an apartment between his parents’ apartment and his brother’s apartment.

RED LIGHT: This looks bad, the reviews are bad, but it gets a yellow light if you really loved Raymond, I guess.

The Brave

Airs: Mondays, 10/9c, NBC

Premise: It’s like a procedural, but with military behind enemy lines.

YELLOW LIGHT: Early reviews reference “jingoism” and “rah rah conservatism” so I’m going to take a pass, thanks. If you’re a big fan of military dramas, then this is nothing groundbreaking but maybe it has a place in your schedule.

Dynasty

Airs: Wednesdays, 9/8c, The CW

Premise: It’s Dynasty, but now and with a Latina stepmother.

YELLOW LIGHT: If you like campy soaps, this is just the thing for you. If that’s not your thing, the light just turned red.

Ghosted

Airs: Sundays, 8:30/7:30c, Fox

Premise: A nonsense person (Adam Scott) and an incredulous person (Craig Robinson) ghostbust Los Angeles to help out the cops. It’s a comedy.

GREEN LIGHT: It’s like The X-Files but Ghostbusters but Adam Scott. I will absolutely give it a try.

The Gifted

Airs: Mondays, 9/8c, Fox

Premise: Kids have mutant powers; parents have to go underground due to government threats. It’s in the X-Men universe.

GREEN LIGHT: This is said to be the most-anticipated show of the year, and it piles on special effects, a solid cast, and an interesting premise. It doesn’t sound like  a genre I’m usually into, but I also would have said that about Orphan Black and look where we are now.

The Good Doctor

Airs: Mondays, 10/9c, NBC

Premise: Freddie Highmore, who is an adult now, is a pediatric surgeon with autism.

GREEN LIGHT: Premise sounds good, cast sounds good, reviews are decent – why not?

Please note: in our post of Fake New Shows of 2019  – it’s a good post, go read it – we had the following:

Jerry Maguire

In this TV adaptation of Jerry Maguire, Jerry is played by that British kid from Finding Neverland (Freddie Highmore).

The Gospel Of Kevin

Airs: Tuesdays, 10/9c, ABC

Premise: God needs Kevin (Jason Ritter) to save the world.

YELLOW LIGHT: It does not sound great, but Jason Ritter’s all right? If anything, I learned that a place of my brain remembers that OTHER show about an unlikely everyperson with a mission from God – Joan of Arcadia. Anyway, the premise also includes Kevin’s recent suicide attempt and him living with his widowed sister and niece, so I’m going to … not, I guess, unless people start raving.

Law & Order: True Crime: The Menendez Murders

Airs: Thursdays, 10/9c, NBC

Premise: Literally the whole deal is in the title. It’s an anthology thing.

GREEN LIGHT: Thing you should know about me: I often fall asleep to true crime documentaries because someone spray-painted over my soul or whatever. And for 8 weeks this fall, I will be falling asleep to this one.

But really, 90s crime series and specials, from O.J. to Jonbenet, have been all the rage, so this feels right on-trend. Also, it’s not a 90s crime anthology without a respected actress in a perm wig.

Marvel’s Inhumans

Airs: Fridays, 9/8c, ABC

Premise: I swear, none of it made sense to me –  but presumably if you’re into the Marvel universe it does.

RED LIGHT: There is, of course, a niche of people who will love this, but if you don’t already know that you’re one of those people you can skip this. Face it, Friday night is not a time slot for a show the network has great confidence in.

The Mayor

Airs: Tuesdays, 9:30/8:30c, ABC

Premise: A rapper runs for office as a stunt but he gets elected – then he is good at it!

GREEN LIGHT: I’d watch Daveed Diggs in anything, and this premise sounds like a lot of fun once I get past my instinctive shudder at the phrase “runs for office as a stunt but gets elected.”

Me, Myself & I

Airs: Mondays, 9:30/8:30c, CBS

Premise: This is the story of the same man at age 14 in 1991, in the present day at 40, and in the future at 65.

GREEN LIGHT: First of all, Bobby Moynihan. Second of all, 90s flashbacks. Third of all, a future-jump to the 2040s. This sounds fantastic, and I hope it lives up to its promising premise.

The Orville

Airs: Thursdays, 9/8c, Fox

Premise: It’s the future, and a crew is on a spaceship, but it’s kind of a crappy spaceship. It’s a dramedy.

RED LIGHT: This could go one of two ways. If successful, it will bridge the comedy and sci-fi genres; if not, it will alienate fans of both. Unfortunately, first reports lean toward the “not.”

S.W.A.T.

Airs: Thursdays, 10/9c, CBS

Premise: A SWAT lieutenant has dual loyalties – the streets and the police.

YELLOW LIGHT: On one hand, this is the very definition of “done before.” On the other hand, Shemar Moore. If you’re a police procedural fan then you might want to at least catch the pilot.

SEAL Team

Airs: Wednesdays, 9/8c, CBS

Premise: It’s a SEAL team.

YELLOW LIGHT: Word is people are really looking forward to this one. It’s not my cup of tea, but if it’s yours then you’ll probably also want to look into The Brave, profiled above.

Ten Days In The Valley

Airs: Sundays, 10/9c, ABC

Premise: The producer of a cop drama has a cop drama of her own when her daughter goes missing.

GREEN LIGHT: Reviews are good. Even better, this is a limited series – 10 episodes – which is the TV sweet-spot of taking your time with a story without drawing it out into unnecessary twists and turns.

Will & Grace

Airs: Thursdays, 8/7c, NBC

Premise: Will and Grace! Jack and Karen! Willandgraceandjackandkaren! Again!

GREEN LIGHT: Could this be the return of Must-See TV? Reboots have a spotty record, but this one looks like the real deal as long as it can avoid the Fuller House pitfall of making EVERYTHING into a winky nostalgia reference.

Wisdom Of The Crowd

Airs: Sunday, 8/7c, CBS

Premise: Solving crimes with a crowd-sourcing app.

YELLOW LIGHT: I’m bored of “X expert uses Y to solve crimes!” shows, but reviews are decent, so if that genre appeals to you then think about adding this one to your lineup.

Young Sheldon

Airs: Monday, 9/25, 8:30/7:30c, CBS

Premise: Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory, but young – a child genius in the late 80s, starting high school.

GREEN LIGHT: If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you’re a fan of The Big Bang Theory – because based on ratings, a LOT of people are fans of The Big Bang Theory. It doesn’t appeal to me at all, yet Young Sheldon looks really sweet. The child genius and 80s-throwback elements seem fun, and the pilot tested well. It’s enough to make me wish they had given the kid a different name and taken away the Big Bang Theory element, though I get that that is a huge draw for a lot of people. Fact is, Young Sheldon seems watchable whether you watch Big Bang or emphatically do not watch Big Bang.

I have a feeling that someday we will be saying that we liked Iain Armitage back when he was still Iain Loves Theatre.