Binge Watch: Best Television Series

We’ve made it to 2022 and there are hundreds of shows awaiting us. But before we move on to the glory of 2022, it’s time to pause and look back on 2021. Ricky and I discuss our selections on an upcoming episode of The Music City Drive-In Podcast, but for this week’s Binge Watch, I’m looking at my 10 favorite TV Seasons in 2021.

Agree, disagree, have a selection you want to share? Fire it up in the comments.

10. Only Murders in the Building, Season 1 (Hulu)
Steve Martin, Martin Short and Selena Gomez in a TV show. It sounds like the set up to a joke, but instead it’s a trio that come together in a delightful way in one of the most fun and clever comedies of the year. This show featured engaging characters, an engaging story and a cliffhanger that makes me excited for Year Two.

9. Schmigadoon! (Apple TV+)
It was a great year for Apple TV+, which delivered some of my favorite originals of the year in series and in films. This one is a comedy, a six-episode parody of musicals. Cecily Strong and Keegan-Michael Key are great in the lead roles. From the first episode until the last, this had me laughing and tapping my toe. What can I say, I loved it.

8. Yellowstone, Season 4 (Paramount)
This began as a show of summer, with a great cast led by Kevin Costner. We left off on quite a cliffhanger in the Summer of 2020. We had to wait nearly 18 months to find out what happened, but it was worth the wait. I love the slow burn of the series and the performances, particularly from Costner, Kelly Reilly and Luke Grimes. This has turned into one of my favorite series.

7. Mare of Easttown (HBO)
I love a good slow-burn detective drama. This certainly offers that in spades as Kate Winslet stars as a small-town detective with plenty of personal drama who is assigned to a high-profile case. She’s partnered with Evan Peters’ big town detective and things don’t go as planned. I loved Winslet in the role and I was taken with the arc of this seven-episode limited series.

6. Bosch, Season 7 (Amazon Prime)
I have loved Bosch since I saw it as part of Amazon’s pilot process. Eric Overmyer brought the character and world to life in an interesting way, pairing it with an excellent lead performance from Titus Welliver. The final season delivered as the rest had, providing a great and engrossing season of television. Bosch the series will be missed, but fortunately the character is coming back!

5. Hawkeye (Disney+)
It was a big year for original Marvel series. We got five of them in 2021, the final of those being Hawkeye. It gave central focus to Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner), who was often a background player in the larger Avengers films. This one featured a new character played by Hailee Steinfeld and the return of Yelena, played by Florence Pugh. Both were excellent. I loved the holiday setting and the six episodes of this series that were delivered. I hope we get another season.

4. WandaVision (Disney+)
Hawkeye was the last of the original series to debut in 2021, but WandaVision was the first. I had no idea what to expect but was blown away by the creativity. The early episodes featured takes on different classic sitcom genres, while the latter episodes packed an incredible emotional wallop. The loss of Vision (Paul Bettany) was one of the more glossed over aspects of Infinity War, and I felt like this film gave that loss time to breathe and proved a showcase for Elizabeth Olsen and Kathryn Hahn.

3. Ted Lasso, Season 2 (Apple TV+)
I love Ted Lasso—the character and the series. The first season was just about the best thing I saw in 2020. The second season, which took some darker and more emotional turns, was equally powerful, perhaps more so because it was willing to take risks. I was sad to see the heel turn for Nate (Nick Mohammed), but it made sense within the world. I can’t wait for season three.

2. Midnight Mass (Netflix)
: This drama from Mike Flanagan was probably the most well-written show I saw this year. The incredible performances from Zach Gilford, Kate Siegel and Hamish Linklater were the icing on the cake. This was a profound exploration of faith, guilt and forgiveness wrapped in a horror story. It was deeply moving and at times beautiful.

1. For All Mankind, Season 2 (Apple TV+)
When Apple TV+ launched, For All Mankind was part of their initial slate. It didn’t receive the most publicity, but it was easily the best series. We had to wait over a year for a second season thanks to the pandemic, but it proved worth the wait. And it’s still Apple TV+ best series, and the best season of television I saw in 2021—and I saw more than my fair share. The finale, The Grey, was absolutely stunning and the most emotional hour of television I experienced in 2021. If you’re not watching For All Mankind, do it now!

Matthew Fox is a graduate of the Radio, Television and Film program at Biola University, and a giant nerd. He spends his free time watching movies, TV, and obsessing about football. He is a member of the FSWA. You can find him @knighthawk7734 on Twitter and as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast.

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