TV.com's Top 100 Everything of 2013, Vol. 8: Items 30-21

With the new year approaching, there's no better time than now to get your resolutions in order. There are, of course, the standard promises that we make every year: Find a permanent role for Summer Glau on a series that won't get canceled, slap some sense into whoever is in charge at NBC, and finish that friendship bracelet you've been making for Dana Brody. But this year, let's commit to the biggest resolution of all: Let's resolve to be nicer to Mario Lopez. The poor guy is just scraping by. So if you see him, give him an old shirt of yours, or those leftovers that you know you won't eat. Together, we can make this world a better place for Mario Lopez. We'll get started as soon as we finish up the Top 100 Everything list! Only 30 items left to go...


30. The Returned's opening credits

We always like to honor at least one new show's opening credits in this big end-o'-the-year list, and few of them really jumped out until Sundance Channel imported this amazing French series about the dead returning to a small town. The themes of life and death, past and present, and light and dark are all captured to perfection in this work of art, creating a moving intro that steels viewers for the heavy stuff to follow. Also... a kitten! 

PREVIOUSLY: The Returned Series Premiere Review: Living, Breathing Memories


29. Supernatural writes some Men of Letters


After many fans had given up on Supernatural for good, the veteran series experienced a resurgence in the middle of Season 8 when it revealed the other half of the family lineage. "As Time Goes By" used some time-travel magic to introduce Sam and Dean to Henry Winchester, their paternal grandfather, and in doing so, let the boys in on the existence of the Men of Letters, a secret organization of scholars who believe that monsters and demons are things to be studied, not just hunted. Membership is hereditary, meaning John Winchester would've become a member if Henry hadn't been killed in the future, which means Sam and Dean are also members. This new development gave the brothers a home for the first time since Azazel killed their mother, and it opened up Supernatural's world, making it ripe for new stories once again. Not many series last for eight seasons, and even fewer experience an injection of originality so far into their runs.

PREVIOUSLY: Supernatural "As Time Goes By" Review: Winchester Legacies


28. Rectify captures Daniel's world

Very few shows did as good a job of showing a character's perspective in 2013 than Sundance Channel's Rectify, which put viewers inside the head of newly freed Death Row inmate Daniel Holden after he spent 19 years waiting to die. The outside world had moved on without him. His family members had grown and aged, technology had evolved and devices had shrunk, and Sonic the Hedgehog had gone 3-D. The deliberate pacing of scenes in which Daniel shuffled along, staring in wonder at the towers of gadgets in a big-box store or the shelves full of enhanced bottled water at a gas station should have been a bore, but thanks to Rectify's careful, deliberate style, they became a window into the mind of one of television's most fascinating new characters. 

PREVIOUSLY: Rectify Is the Best New Show You Haven't Watched


27. It's Always Sunny celebrates 100 episodes with a surreal sequence of fever dreams

FX's longest-running and yellingest series celebrated its 100th episode with a convenient-store robbery that kicked off a series of glimpses into the gang's fractured psyches—all of which were bizarre, and some of which were truly terrifying. Mac got his stunt work on and became the badass he's always considered himself to be. Dee achieved fame as an actress and dumped Josh Groban for Brad Pitt. Dennis got shot in the head, fell in love with busty weather-girl-turned-nurse Jackie Denardo, and then smothered her with a pillow after a car accident destroyed her breasts. Frank ate some hot dogs. And Charlie—oh man, Charlie. Mr. Kelly embarked on a ridiculous animated adventure, a simultaneously heartwarming and heartbreaking tale of a waitress, a janitor, lots of rats, and lots of babies living happily ever after in the house from Up. We may have even cried a little.


26. Lizzy Caplan leads a cast full of great female performances on Masters of Sex

It's not that surprising that Showtime's Masters of Sex turned out to be one of the best freshman series of 2013. It's rooted in great source material, has a solid creative team, and Michael Sheen is a perfect actor for long-form storytelling. But what really allowed the show to thrive was its slew of fantastic female cast members, top-lined by Lizzy Caplan as Virginia Johnson. Caplan's always been a talented actress, but the Virginia character rightfully gave her so much more to play with than she's enjoyed in her past roles, and she knocked it out of the park, becoming the nucleus of the show and pulling interesting stories and characters toward her. Though of course, Caplan wasn't alone: Allison Janney, Julianne Nicholson, Caitlin Fitzgerald, Heléne York, Annaleigh Ashford, and Rose McIver all turned in lovely and oftentimes heart-wrenching performances, making certain the women were the proverbial masters of the show's universe. 

PREVIOUSLY: The 12 Best New Characters of the Fall 2013 TV Season; Masters of Sex Season Finale Review: It's You


25. Mad Men's Don Draper finally tells the truth


The meticulously fabricated walls that Mad Men's maddest man spent so many years building up around himself sustained quite a bit of structural damage both before and during Season 6, so it was only a matter of time before they crumbled and fell—and that happened in spectacular fashion in the season finale, when Don scrapped his pitch script and told Hershey's he was an orphan who grew up in a whorehouse. Sure, his brutal honesty got him fired fro Sterling Cooper & Partners—or at least put on leave—and he'll probably be divorced when we next see him, but it what a cathartic moment! It's awesome to finally have a clear picture of his motivation, and we're truly curious to see where he'll go next. PLUS, Don's breakdown paved the way for Boss Peggy to take over his corner office, and as we look forward to Season 7, we're certain there's some good stuff up ahead. 

PREVIOUSLY: Mad Men Season 6 Finale Review: The Mask Slips


24. Sons of Anarchy finally pulls the trigger

After wriggling his way out of the reach of Mr. Mayhem's scythe for nearly three seasons—often to serve the story rather than a sense of reality—Clay Morrow was finally sent to that big biker bar in the sky as Jax schemed to get SAMCRO out of the gun trade. Would we rather have seen him dragged behind a motorcycle over a field of sharp tacks and loaded mousetraps? Sure. But getting his very overdue death out of the way worked, too.

PREVIOUSLY: Sons of Anarchy "Aon Rud Persanta" Review: Just When I Thought I Was Out ...


23. Arrow's Flash-dance

The CW's latest superhero series has dramatically improved in its second season, turning in exciting episodes filled with great character moments and interesting enemies. But if we're talking about a standout this year, it has to be the mid-season finale, "Three Ghosts." Not only did it tell the origin story The Flash (which was totally freaking awesome, by the way), it was also a turning point for the series. Tommy Merlyn's death loomed large over the first half of Season 2—and rightfully so—but the time had come for Ollie to nut up and face his inner demons to defeat Brother Blood and his super soldiers. We might have teared up a bit when Tommy's ghost gave Ollie the necessary pep talk to keep fighting, but the real blow came when Slade Wilson, who we all thought was dead (and who Ollie also believed to have perished) was revealed to be the one who was pulling Blood's strings. There was also that whole thing about Roy being injected with the Mirakuru serum and surviving. So yeah, "Three Ghosts" was pretty freaking awesome.

PREVIOUSLY: Arrow "Three Ghosts" Review: Now It's Personal


22. Selina Meyer for President!


Veep took on a more serialized format in Season 2, which not only enhanced the show's quality but introduced several new characters played by the likes of Gary Cole, Dave Foley, and Kevin Dunn, all while maintaining its hilarious and cynical outlook on American politics and winning all the awards for "most creative use of the F word." The show's ensemble cast is one of the best on TV, and Julia Louis Dreyfus deserves every accolade she's received for her portrayal of the ever-insecure and delightfully profane Selina Meyer. But perhaps the highest highlights of the show's "robust" second season—which saw our trusty veep become a meme, tell Jonah to "get the fuck off my plane," and get groped in Helsinki, among plenty of other things—were its final two episodes, "Running" and "D.C." Now, both Veep and its title character are on the road to to a potentially major shakeup, and we can't wait to tag along for the ride. 


21. Walter Bishop says goodbye

We said we wouldn't cry we said we wouldn't cry we said we wouldn't cry oops we cried. Fringe's earnest emotional core was what truly set it apart from other network sci-fi shows, and we always knew we'd be in for a teary series finale, but Walter's trio of farewells—to Donald, to Astrid, and to Peter—stomped on our eyeballs until even our future tears were all dried up. With all due respect to Walter and Peter's touching send-off, the hardest and happiest of them all was Walter's loving conversation with his assistant Astroturf Aspirin Astrid, which said so much without saying much at all.

PREVIOUSLY: Fringe Series Finale Review: A Fond Farewell



TV.COM'S TOP 100 EVERYTHING OF 2013

– Volume 1: Items 100-91

– Volume 2: Items 90-81

– Volume 3: Items 80-71

– Volume 4: Items 70-61

– Volume 5: Items 60-51

Volume 6: Items 50-41

Volume 7: Items 40-31

Volume 8: Items 30-21

Volume 9: Items 20-11

Volume 10: Items 10-1


Comments (138)
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Jan 04, 2014
damnit walter bishop you did it again, I'm crying. Arrow is awesome!!
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Jan 01, 2014
Masters of Sex was my first introduction to Lizzy Caplan (I've forgotten Cloverfield, thank you very much) and I want more. I agree that the female characters are the heart and soul of Masters of Sex. The episodes that centred around their POV were the strongest.

IMHO, Julia Louis-Dreyfus needs to be mentioned in the same breath as Lucille Ball, Mary Tyler-Moore and Carol Burnett. She is that talented. I cannot think of another actor who could play that role.

Walter and Asterisk, Astro, Asteroid, Astrid. Their scenes together were awesome. I can't go on, it hurts too much.
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Dec 31, 2013
I totally agreed with Masters of Sex. If nothing else,almost all the woman in the show did a fantastic show whether they are naked or not. Actually, many of them does their nude scenes very well too.
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Dec 31, 2013
Now I'm nervous that there won't be any more Rectify higher up on the list. Say it isn't so!
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Dec 31, 2013
*sob* Walter *sob*
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Dec 30, 2013
The Men of Letters storyline has so much potential! I can't wait to see more of the bunker and find out more about Sam and Dean's history as Legacies--I really hope we see more of that in the second half of Season 9. And I love that Sam and Dean have a home, someplace they can be safe. They both deserve it!
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Dec 30, 2013
Arriving to the great stuff, I see! I have just watched last week the whole of Rectify and the show is really good. They told me it was slow, but I didn't notice. Good choice for the opening credits! The Returned deserves it. And Master of Sex promises to be a great catalogue of female characters. For all those shows that have secondary female characters that they make us hate because they are so stupid, at least this one took good care of every single one of them!

And hey, there's even a spot for Walter!
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Dec 30, 2013
Just happened to watch the series final again just an hour ago. John Noble for an Emmy!



Goodbye Walter


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Dec 31, 2013
Possibly my favorite scene of the whole series :) Thanks for that!
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Dec 30, 2013
Meh, most of this should be lower on the list. You've had some great choices in the last two parts that should be higher than these. (e.g Jamie and Brienne)

'Cept Walter and Astrid. That was beautiful.
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Dec 30, 2013
Aw... Fringe should have at a minimum been bumped ahead one slot into the Top 20. Either way, THANK YOU @tvdotcom for actually NOT forgetting such a wonderful show. :'-)
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Dec 30, 2013
For me it was DEFINITELY Rectify - just had me spellbound from the first to the last......
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Dec 30, 2013
I didn't find the mid-season finale of Arrow all that amazing. It was very entertaining but not the most compelling episode of this better season, that is still "The League of Assassin's", IMHO.
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Dec 30, 2013
correction, the episode's name is: "League of Assassins".
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Dec 30, 2013
Oh, did you have to put Walter Bishop, and Astrid and Gene and FRINGE here at the end just to make me cry?
By the way, RECTIFY is the best drama I have seen so far.
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Dec 30, 2013
Yes! Let's find something for Summer to do. She really needs to be on TV more. I was just re-watching some Dollhouse last night. They shot Summer! Why would you shoot Summer? You don't shoot Summer! Even if you are Amy Acker. (Talk about Nerd Royalty)

Who is Mario Lopez and does he need us to be nice to him?

As for opening credits, The Returned's is pretty good, but surely, the best must go to AHS:Coven. It absolutely blows my mind everytime I watch it.

The problem with Masters of Sex, IMO, is that it is TOO good. Strong source material and very powerful performances from all the players. I can barely handle half an episode a week. Allison Janney as a 40+ mother and wife of a university professor, and she doesn't even know what an orgasm is! It's too much.
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Dec 30, 2013
Who is Mario Lopez and does he need us to be nice to him?

He's a former (current?) entertainment crap show host who's now doing infomercials. Or the news. Or something. He also fixes toilets in his spare time.

If Johnny Carson were still alive, he would be auditioning to be his sidekick.

He's just............well.................sad.
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Dec 30, 2013
So he's some TV pretty boy who is feeling under appreciated?
Oh, boohoo.
I kind of figured it was something like that.
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Dec 30, 2013
The final season of Fringe wasn't very good but Walter saying goodbye to everyone was very touching.
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Dec 30, 2013
FRINGE = GREATNESS!
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Dec 30, 2013
Im glad the returned is on this list!! I cant believe how awesome and fresh that show was! And the opening credit sequence is amazing! Usually I skip opening credits (dexter , true blood, american horror) but this one is so catchy yet intense!
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Dec 30, 2013
For me The Returned was excellent i the first two ep, good in the following three, bad in the 6th and terrible in the last two. But that is my opinion ;)
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Dec 30, 2013
I LOVE YOU ASTRID PLEASE DON'T CRY OH GOD.
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Dec 30, 2013
Its always sunny is so underrated. Its a hilarious show though
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Dec 30, 2013
It's incredibly funny. Too bad it isn't on HBO, the commercials hurt the show, imo.
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Dec 30, 2013
Yes! I agree and i wish it had longer seasons
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Dec 30, 2013
Supernatural!!!!!!!
Its Always Sunny!!!!!!!!!!!!
Arrow!!!!!!

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Dec 30, 2013
If we're gonna rate little-watched high-quality foreign cable series' opening credits, Top of the Lake's were the absolute best (and eeriest!).

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Dec 30, 2013
I wouldn't have put The Returned's opening credits on the list, let alone so high. It just doesn't stand out from so many other opening credits for shows today.
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Dec 30, 2013
Well, that Fringe video tore me apart all over again.
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Dec 30, 2013
I haven't been compelled to post in these top 100 articles much so far, but that bit about Arrow and The Flash just didn't hit the mark for me. The episode did have some great moments, Tommy and Slade Wilson, so I do agree with that stuff, but Barry Allen's material wasn't anything in that episode... and Roy always kinda sucks.
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Dec 30, 2013
Thought Fringe's ending would have been higher. Miss it sooooooo much. Thought Arrow's midseason was good but maybe a little too 'busy', maybe a little lower on the list (or higher if you're talking about the massive improvement between seasons). Also can't say I love Supernatural's 'men of letters' stories but I agree it has opened a plethora of possibilities story wise (as well as the batcave lol)
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Dec 30, 2013
It's Always Sunny ep.100 was incredible!
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Dec 30, 2013
Did people actually think Slade was dead? I don't even read the comics and I knew he was going to return as a villainous Deathstroke. This has been obvious since they first introduced his character.
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Dec 30, 2013
I didn't even understand that it was possible to think that he was dead.
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Dec 30, 2013
Fringe!!! I miss you! Especially Walter. Arrow's mid season finale was amazing, Always Sunny's 100th episode was funny as hell. Clays death on SOA while a bit anticlimactic was a pivotal scene. Supernatural's Men of Letters certainly rejuvenated the series, very well done.
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Dec 29, 2013
"convenient-store robbery" Unless that is a pun, I have to point out that it is convenienCE-store...
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Dec 30, 2013
Did you watch the episode? It was a pretty convenient store robbery enabling the writers to delve into the motivations that drive each of the characters.

Also, the use of the term in this article goes back to the ftw mention of the episode: http://www.tv.com/news/ftw-vs-wtf-the-tv-week-in-review-october-13-138151712925/
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Dec 31, 2013
So you are saying: Yes, it is a pun.

Thank you
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Dec 29, 2013
So Doctor Who's on here somewhere, right? It must be. And possibly Game of Thrones' intro? So perfect.
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Dec 30, 2013
Doctor Who 50th should be in top ten for me. Also, Game of Thrones intro isn't new. Would have made the list in it's freshman year something else didn't beat it (which I doubt)
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Dec 30, 2013
Well they add new places every season. I think Pyke was in it this time? I can't remember what happened in the third book, much less the third season. :)
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Dec 31, 2013
How's about a Red Wedding? How do you not remember that?
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Jan 12, 2014
Also other things, like birthdays and trying to remember to buy tea. Just slip my mind, you know?
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Jan 02, 2014
Well okay, but I mean places rather than events. Did Theon have his little trip to meet his dad yet? Things like that. And Dany went to Astapor, right? It's those type of things I can't keep straight in my head.
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Dec 29, 2013
Ohh Walter I miss you!!! Fringe ending should have been at number one!
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Dec 30, 2013
Definitely. That ending was heartbreakingly beautiful. Knowing TV.com, Walters acid trip Monty Python-esque animated sequence from "Black Blotter" will be in the Top 10. However, the Walter & Peter goodbye should've been way higher then 21. :'(
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Dec 29, 2013
Oh, did you have to put Walter White, and Astrid and Gene and FRINGE here at the end just to make me cry?
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Dec 29, 2013
Walter BISHOP!!!!

Walter White is BrBa
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Dec 29, 2013
Oops I cried again.
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Dec 29, 2013
The opening credits of "Les Revenants" are really beautiful. Especially at a time when opening credits in general are becoming so rare.
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Dec 29, 2013
Arrow's midseason finale was awesome, and it's great to see it mentioned here! So much love.
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Dec 29, 2013
No offense to Walter&Astrid saying goodbye, cause I loved it. But for me, there's NOTHING that beats Walter&Peter goodbye. "You're my favorite thing, Peter. My very favorite thing." is still like one of my all-time favorite Walter moments on the show.
Well, then again, I guess everyone has their own opinion ;)
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Dec 29, 2013
Very glad Veep made the list. I binge watched it last week and it was all kind of amazing.
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Dec 29, 2013
Once again Fringe!!!!!
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Dec 29, 2013
So happy Rectify is on the list!
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Dec 29, 2013
The murder of Clay was certainly memorable, but the best moments from SoA this season were the confrontations between Gemma and Tara.
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Dec 29, 2013
Veep is great! Though, Ianucci's masterpiece is The Thick of It. I'm glad he didn't copy the shows, it's just that to me Veep misses a foul-mouthed SOB as Peter Capaldi/Malcolm Tucker was.
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Dec 29, 2013
Not going lie, I teared up to both goodbyes to Peter and Astrid
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Dec 29, 2013
I can't express how much I love you TV.com folks. You make my day. Just to know you are out there sharing in my hysteria.
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Dec 29, 2013
I miss Fringe so much!!!!
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Dec 29, 2013
Are you F%^&@#* with me? Only 21st place?
And seriously you chose Walter and Astrid's goodbye? I just finished a box of tissues watching the Walter\Peter you-tube clip!!!!!
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Dec 29, 2013
EXACTLY why this show may never be matched in brilliance. So many SciFi wonders yet so many heartstrings. So much to love.
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Dec 29, 2013
Walter. Miss him and the gang. Fringe WAS a real deal
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Dec 29, 2013
This comment has been removed.
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Dec 29, 2013
Wow! Do you have a dodgy looking website that I could visit with more information and some Internet Transmitted Diseases?
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Dec 30, 2013
Yes! Though my modem is still making that kkkkrrrhhchch sound, so it might take a bit to upload it to you.
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Dec 30, 2013
I bet he does, and it's coded in TRS-80-specific BASIC, and if it's a TRS-80 color computer it was visually designed with the turtle. It took 3 days to upload all the graphics using the 300-baud modem.
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Dec 30, 2013
I can make "Edshrinker Rules" repeat down the screen forever IN COLOR! Eat you heart out.
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Dec 31, 2013
10 CLS
20 PRINT "Edshrinker Rules"
30 GOTO 20

done (you didn't specify which color)
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Dec 29, 2013

God Bless Sleepy Hollow. It has lessened my withdrawal from Fringe in ways much more than John Noble's cameo.
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Dec 29, 2013
Waaaaalter! Oh God Sniffle slobber gush.
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Dec 29, 2013
Asteroid was so underrated.
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Dec 29, 2013
Oh great, just when I thought I was over the end of Fringe... :-(
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