Binge-r# 118: The Best Returning Shows of 2018
THE BEST RETURNING SHOWS OF 2018
1) ATLANTA S2 (SBS on Demand): The second season of Donald Glover’s remarkable half-hour contained multitudes, fulfilling the experience of being a black person in America today as blistering comedy, revelatory drama, and – with the remarkable Teddy Perkins episode – haunting horror. [full S1 review here]
2) BOJACK HORSEMAN S5 (Netflix): “An animated Hollywood satire set in an alternate word where anthropomorphic animals and humans casually interact… BoJack Horseman revealed itself as an emotionally illuminating and tellingly sharp comedy.” – BINGE-R #108 [full S5 review here]
3) THE GOOD PLACE S3 (Netflix): “It’s a sitcom about the afterlife, underpinned by a syllabus of philosophical theories… the world building is giddily otherworldly, with farcical ramifications resulting from the best of intentions, but each element of this show constructively feeds into another.” – BINGE-R #107 [full S3 review here]
4) GLOW S2 (Netflix): There were big moves in and out of the ring in this drama about the woman in a start-up 1980s wrestling league. The new season unearthed more of the characters, matching the absurdity of their difficult profession with insights about motherhood, unity, and income. [full S1 review here]
5) THE BUREAU S4 (SBS on Demand): Attuned to what deception ultimately reveals in people and the uneasy realities of today’s world, this intricately detailed French drama about the country’s undercover operatives added levels of subterfuge and tension, but also a tragic, obsessive momentum. [full S1 review here]
6) THE UNBREAKABLE KIMMY SCHMIDT S4 (Netflix): Netflix was a little stingy with its best sitcom, only adding six new episodes of this loopy comedy about an abduction survivor discovering the modern world (the rest arrive on January 25), but it remains a crackerjack joy of whiplash punchlines and Ellie Kemper’s perky genius. [full S3 review here]
7) AMERICAN VANDAL S2 (Netflix): “Dan Perrault and Tony Yacenda’s series, which was a sleeper hit in 2017 once viewers got past the unconvincing synopsis, is a superbly constructed satire of the true crime documentary genre and a warmly generous evocation of adolescent life.” – BINGE-R #105 [full S2 review here]
8) FAUDA S2 (Netflix): The second season of this Israeli drama about a covert counterterrorism team and their Palestinian adversaries in the West Bank remains a gripping procedural whose setting and the resulting ferocity gives it a visceral drive. Nothing, ultimately, is routine here. [full S1 review here]
9) BILLIONS S3 (Stan): The venal battle between a hedge fund billionaire (Damian Lewis) and a powerful U.S. Attorney (Paul Giamatti) always toys with excess, but the third batch of episodes kept the protagonists starkly illuminated beneath the twisting plots and piquant dialogue. [full S2 review here]
10) OZARK S2 (Netflix): Having taken his family into rural exile to keep them alive, Jason Bateman’s money launderer discovers in the second season of this knowing drama that the price of survival is infecting those he loves with the conspiracy that he ruthlessly nurtures. [full S1 review here]
Plus: 11) The Man in the High Castle S3 (Amazon); 12) Schitt’s Creek S4 (Netflix); 13) Claws S2 (Stan); 14) The Handmaid’s Tale S2 (SBS on Demand); 15) Patriot S2 (Amazon); Harlots S2 (SBS on Demand); 17) Mozart and the Jungle S4 (Stan); 18) Santa Clarita Diet S2 (Netflix); 19) Goliath S2 (Amazon); 20 Younger S5 (Stan).
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