Ultimate TOP 10 TV shows of the decade*
* Ultimate TOP 10 TV shows of the decade, that I could re-watch over and over again, I mean. Have you ever wondered what do you prefer – a movie or a TV series? It’s a tough choice – hey, don’t laugh! I’m serious. I love going to the movies, I really do. But that’s just it – going to the movies. I rarely watch movies at home. TV series on the other hand… Different story. I think I like my movies on big screen. One of my New Year’s Resolution is to watch more movies, so I can write about them for you, lot!
By now, you are probably wondering why the heck I will write about TV shows that I could re-watch. Let me correct that statement – TV shows that I am re-watching, constantly. I am literally the worst person ever, I know!!! The worst part is not that I am lazy, it’s not that. I am curios, I want to start something new. But… Subconsciously, I keep coming back to what I know. I noticed the same tendency in life, especially in relationships. But that’s story for another time (and you know what, it’s a strange déjà vu…). Anyway, I think it’s a list worth sharing – after all you can judge people by TV shows they’re watching 😉 Or… Re-watching!
1. Sons of Anarchy (2008-2014), created by Kurt Sutter
You might call it a stretch, since first episode aired in 2008, but that’s just technicality. It’s my blog, right? 😉 A friend of mine recommended this show to me, and it took me six months to finally watch it. And I got hooked, instantly! Bikers, Motorcycle Club, beautiful machines they ride… That’s one thing. What really got me was the family value they emphasized. The Clubhouse is a place, a home away from home for bikers from Charming Town. It is also a tribe, not in blood but in bond. One would die for another. One would lie for another. Hmm, you might think, is this a modern musketeers kind of thing? Yes and no. It’s a little bit more complicated. Sons go through ups and downs throughout eight seasons, but they go together. They win big, to lose just as much. They are ruthless but caring; they won’t stop until they get what they want.
Besides various story lines, that combined together, create picture so good you crave more; there is an amazing soundtrack. When you look up reviews of this show online, I guarantee that one of the main points will be music. Like Day is gone, The Lost Boy, Come join the murder, The House of Rising Sun and of course Make it rain. Obviously, there are much more.
I like to re-watch Sons once a year. It’s really tough story, not necessarily with a happy ending, but… Definitely most satisfying one. There is a spin-off series, Mayans M.C. but I had no chance of watching it yet. How about you, lot?
2. Twin Peaks (2017) and therefore, obviously Twin Peaks (1990-1991), created by David Lynch and Mark Frost.
Ha! Yessssss, when I came up with that list, I asked myself: Now exactly how do you want to stretch it back to the nineties to pull season 1 and 2 here? Well, starting with season 3, which aired 25 years after! Which, by the was a brilliant move. You all remember what Laura Palmer said, right? I’ll see you again in 25 years! Meanwhile. You know, Twin Peaks has a special place in my heart. It’s always fun for me to watch this series again, choosing different approach each time. Currently I’m doing one with dividing the show into small chunks with various storylines. And it’s super fun!
Do you remember the Playbook? Little refreshment then. Do you remember me explaining where blog’s name came from? “Well that’s easy – it’s one of the greatest, most ducked up TV series I have ever watched in my entire life. I love it, I come back to it quite often and each time I notice something else. I tried to explain the plot to someone and I said „It’s a long story…” – and that’s the best summary of the show: multiple storylines cross with each other to create chaos and confusion. Long story. And I am full of long stories too!”
And that’s pretty much the best summary I could come up with: It’s a long story with great music.
3. The Mandalorian (2019-), created by Jon Favreau
Come on, lot. You know me already. When Marta and I went to see Episode IX in theater, I told her that if I had to choose only one franchise to watch for the rest of my life, Marvel or Star Wars, I would go for Star Wars. She laughed and told me, that it’s okay, we would just phone each other and talk about what we watched, as she would choose Marvel! (Seriously though my friend – I am so happy that you are into Star Wars too, my heart makes happy beeps!). I wrote a piece about this show, seeing only two episodes and that’s a big deal. Firstly, because I always wait for the show/season to be done. Secondly, I might be completely subjective with it. Okay, I am completely subjective 😀 It’s Star Wars!
But I have watched all 8 Chapters, and I think there were only two episodes, that I would call speedbumps. Rest of them were fantastic with Chapter 8 being cherry on top. And let’s not focus entirely on the Child, but everything else – this lone ranger vibes, locations, Mando’s adventures, the flashbacks, MUSIC (what is super cool? Creating music for each Chapter and putting it on Spotify and YouTube).
What I didn’t like about this show? Length of the episodes. 30 minutes? Are you mad or what. I demand at least 42 minutes! No, but honestly – this is the kind of show, that gets you hooked in its first minute. And, according to the fans all over the world, it has everything that Star Wars was missing.
Season 2 will air fall 2020. Wake me up in around that time, thanks.
4. Peaky Blinders (2013-), created by Steven Knight
You know what’s funny? I never even heard about this show, until last year when I was at home on sick leave. I was looking for some new show on Netflix (shocker, right?). And being a sick me, I decided to give it a shot. Turns out that sick me is genius. And so is this show! I watched 4 season in one weekend and holly crap! Tommy Shelby and his family for the win. Peaky Blinders reek of cigarettes, booze and crime. Welcome to Birmingham, a city of doom! City of blood and destruction, city run by the Shelby Family – war veterans, smugglers, cheaters and killers. The dirty streets, the air, so thick from the cigarettes smoke, the swear words flying here and there, the rules you must follow, the blood bond… It really teleport you there, to 1919.
It’s a good moment to mention deep blue eyes of Tommy Shelby, right? But no, seriously – his character is so complex and full of surprises! Always with a plan. Always with a way out. Always ready, constantly alerted. Cillian Murphy was a great casting choice, I loved him in Nolan movies. Second line of defense, with Paul Anderson as Arthur Shelby and Helen McCrory as Polly Grey – hands down.
Season five ahead of me, so as soon as I’m done with Narcos and Narcos: Mexico…
5. One Chicago – Chicago Fire (2012-), Chicago PD (2014-), Chicago Med (2015-), Chicago Justice (2017), created by Derek Hass, Dick Wolf, Michael Brandtt, Matt Olmstead.
Lot, this is the best TV series ever, that focuses on the professional and private lives of the firefighters, detectives, emergency medical staff, and lawyers who serve the city of Chicago. When I was working back at the hotel, I’ve had plenty of time to watch stuff. So I watched Luther, SoA and started watching Chicago shows there. It’s everyday life of city heroes. And you know, what is absolutely the best? All shows exist in the same timeline. And! They crossover each other. So, from time to time you get to watch 3 episodes that are one – singular accident triggers series of events that require action from all three (and for one year, four) departments – Fire, P.D. or Med. The franchise also features beautiful music, composed by Atli Örvarsson, like Casey and Dawson, Helluva Firefighter and more, that you can find here.
What I love and hate about these show is how real they are. There is no sugarcoating. People die, heroes die, relationships break, families are put through hell. It’s easy to relate to the characters. I will never forget, watching one episode of Chicago Fire (season 1, episode 19 “A coffin that small”) at work. I was crying like crazy, I literally could not stop. But all 4 shows are really worth watching, maybe not multiple times, but in general. My mum loves it! And you that there is no better recommendation.
6. Mr. Robot (2015-2019), created by Sam Esmail
Another show I started at my old job. Another show, that got me hooked with episode one! It’s extraordinary, with hypnotizing Rami Malek as Elliot Alderson. Young, struggling with anxiety and mental illnesses, working in an “Evil” corporation by day, doing hacking vigilante stuff at night; along his side brilliant Christian Slater playing… Well, if I told you, that would be a huge spoiler. So, if there is anyone out there, who hasn’t seen it yet – please do. And I guarantee you, that you will watch season 1 at least twice. The finale will give you a whole new perspective on what happened, and you won’t resist – that’s exactly how good Mr. Robot is.
Most importantly though, it tackles one of the taboo topics these days – mental health and struggle that comes with it. It shows how lonely life is, when you are dealing with illness like that. How hard is to live in a “normal” society with voices in your head.
Absolute must-watch, lot. Season 4, I’m coming for you!
7. Narcos (2015-2017), created by created by Chris Brancato, Carlo Bernard, and Doug Miro
Sometimes it’s worth waiting for hype to settle. Especially with some TV shows (sure, Internet is ruthless and has no mercy with spoilers, but still…). And you know what? I am glad that I waited with Narcos. Four years ago everyone was watching that, everyone was talking about it. Escobar, Murphy, Peña… What? Who? I don’t care. But you know, it was really worth the wait.
Except from the main story line, which is life and crimes of Pablo Escobar, Inc. there are other tiny (and not) plots that I enjoy. Like Murphy and his stuck up attitude, when his personal life goes to shit. Or Peña being done with the system and forever waiting for approvals to do something. Or Escobar always taking the extra mile for his family, which I think is a soft spot for literally every bad guy ever.
I’m in the middle of season 2 but I already feel like watching it over again. It’s so great! Funny at times, ruthless and sad. Really glad I finally decided to see it. And even though some storylines and characters are made up, for dramatic purposes, it is still a great show.
Score is great too, give it a try!
8. The Pack (2014-), created by Kamil Chomiuk, Krzysztof Mackowski and Wiktor Piatkowski
This is the best polish series in years! For those of you, who are not familiar with polish TV, start with this and I promise you – there will be no disappointment. And it starts with a bang – for real! After bombing attack in the old cabin in the woods, which killed officers from the Border Guard, the only survivor, Captain Wiktor Rebrow tries to unravel the mystery and figure out what happened and who did this.
Bomb is one thing, but on the way few other things are added to the mix, that eventually gives you few answers. But much more questions, too.
Currently, HBO is releasing season 3 (one episode a week), but I will wait for the entire thing to come out, so I can re-watch seasons 1 and 2.
9. Atlanta (2016-), created by Donald Glover
Let me start with saying that Donald Glover is multitalented. He is a singer (rapper), an actor, a director, a screenwriter, an executive producer, a comedian, a DJ. Ladies, GET A MEN WHO CAN DO IT ALL. In other words, just get yourself a Donald Glover. I fell in love with his wit in The Community, I fell in love with his words on records as Childish Gambino, I fell in love with his attitude in The Martian and now I get to fell in love with his vision of life struggles in Atlanta.
Season 1 won 14 awards – including Golden Globes and Critic’s choice award. It was and still is a show that everybody keeps whispering about. It’s different, bizarre at times, it will make you confused but also very compassionate. It’s refreshing to see it, because it’s full of Donald Glover’s eccentric sense of humor. Glover presents a certain point of view in life, which for most of us out there is completely new. Plus, there is Drake. There, an added bonus.
Glover and his team announced that there will be a 3 season, but there is no premiere date yet. You better hurry, Love. I don’t like to wait.
10. Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan (2018-), created by Carlton Cuse and Graham Roland
Most of you probably remember the movies, right? Well, please forget everything you know about them and watch TV show instead. There are two season, 8 episodes each. But I can tell you this – it’s a weekend-watch. One day, if you are skilled enough 😉 I watched season 1 shortly after it premiered on Amazon Prime and it was… Really lousy decision, because I had to watch a year+ for season 2. Luckily, as a distraction I got hooked on some other series, eh?
John Krasinski was casted as Jack Ryan and girl, this was absolutely great choice. By his side, Wendell Pierce as James Greer, a.k.a. grumpy old man that, by the end of the day turns out to be pretty okay guy. This show is packed with action, its pace is very quick and you really need to be sharp and focused not to miss anything. Its spectacular success got booking for season 2 (premiered November 2019) in April 2018, four months prior to releasing first episode. Hell, season 3 was announced in FEBRUARY 2019. That definitely says something, right?
Besides action, plot twists and great cast, music is another wonderful feature. You know, I never actually payed attention to TV series soundtrack, but ever since I started re-watching some series, it got my attention. And score in Jack Ryan is really great. Keeps you on the edge!
I realize that all of the summaries I posted – pop-cultural bits and movies are not conventional. But if I’d only focus on those events or movies that awed critics all over the world… Where would be fun in that? 😉 I really hope that you lot enjoyed it as much as I do. There are lots of TV shows that should make the list, but I probably haven’t seen them yet. 2020 – I’m coming for you 😉