The Top 13 TV Shows of 2013

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  1. Treme

There are not a lot of things that you can say about “Treme” that has not already been said by the small, but loyal band of viewers the show maintains. Complete Perfection. A triumph of the medium. A show that is equally unmatched and under appreciated by its peers. There is truly nothing like it. “Treme” will be missed.

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  1. Mad Men

Character growth is an important part of any TV series, and “Mad Men” is a prime example how to do it right. The evolution of Don, Peggy, Betty, Pete, Sally, Roger, Joan, etc, etc, etc is unbelievable. Matthew Weiner created a beautiful, intelligent world, which has continued to please and fascinate a grateful audience.

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  1. Parenthood

The Braverman’s are not only the best family on television, they are one of the greatest families in television history. One of the finest ensembles working today, including a revolving door of incredible guest stars. It is the best film to television adaptation, losing Steve Martin, but keeping the emotional core that made the film so great in the first place.

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  1. Fringe

What a swan song. I fell in love with this show and after five fantastic, innovative, creative, celebration of science fiction seasons, I was not disappointed. The writers and John Noble created one of the most fascinating, sympathetic, heart breaking characters on television in Walter Bishop. The story lines were incredible and how this show went from where it started, to where it ended, is truly an outstanding achievement.

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  1. Arrested Development

IT RETURNED! Most fans would have given their left hand to see this show come back, and after watching this season, it would have been worth it. Far more ambitious than the original show, with a new style that had many fans putting up a wall. What was once great in the original run though, is great again. The characters, writing, direction, anything and everything about this show works.

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  1. Bob’s Burgers

The greatest show about a family running a restaurant ever. No question about it. Charming, quick, and it has a heart. The family dynamic is spectacular, and the puns. Oh, the puns. It’s a love letter to absurdity and it fills the family and workplace sitcom genres, while bringing something new to the table.

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  1. Orange is the New Black

I had no idea this show was coming. I had no idea that the creator of “Weeds” was going to redeem herself with an amazing character study. A drama/comedy, comedy/drama (I don’t know what it is). I had no idea that if Netflix had taken everything else off streaming I would still be willing to pay eight dollars a month, just to watch this show.

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  1. Family Tree

Christopher Guest came to HBO and brought with him his troop of brilliant character actors, creating a beautiful story about family like nothing else on TV. With co creator Jim Piddock, the pair created a charming, poignant, and whacky story, with unexpected touching moments far more powerful than what most dramas can create.

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  1. Archer

People doing their jobs poorly, while yelling at other people for doing their jobs poorly, and drinking vast amounts of alcohol which is most likely causing them to do their jobs poorly. Also, they are secret agents. This is how I would describe this amazing show to someone, with the addition of some buzzwords like cyborgs, tinnitus, and Burt Reynolds.

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  1. Girls

This world. This stupid, sad, confusing world that these characters inhabit, which I guess is the real world. Even though I have never experienced anything close to the traumatizing events caused by best guess/ throw caution to the wind life choices they make. This show is just exhausting in the best way possible.

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  1. Hannibal

Thrilling and horrifying. Beautiful cinematography, with creativity in spades. Graphic deaths and complex relationships account for just a small percentage of the highlights from season one. Bryan Fuller has reentered the television realm, bringing with him his fascinating story telling perspective, an outstanding cast, along with some good old fashion cannibalism.

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  1. Veep

“Veep” is one of the quickest shows on TV today. Dreyfus and her supporting cast have incredible chemistry, with dialogue that is the perfect mix of natural and outlandish. With Gary Cole and Kevin Dunn joining the already stellar ensemble, “Veep” continues to be one of the best sitcoms in the television landscape.

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  1. Getting On

This is a fast choice, but four episodes in and I am already blown away by this HBO series. “Getting On” is a remake of a BBC show of the same name, lead by a cast of fantastic female character actors, the show is just outstanding. Incredibly funny and genuine, with sharp devastating/uplifting turns that are all emotionally satisfying. I hope this season continues to be strong, and can end on a high note.

Honorable Mentions

Masters of Sex, Hello Ladies, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Breaking Bad, The Killing, Homeland, House of Cards, Game of Thrones, Cougar Town, Trophy Wife, Boardwalk Empire, Derek, Orphan Black, Legend of Korra, Alpha House, The Newsroom, Enlightened.