In this gargantuan Top 100 list, we go a little out of the box by looking at specific elements of television--both on-screen and off-screen--that we thought were the most memorable this year. We'll put up 10 more each weekday through January 2nd, so be sure to check the site often. Until next year, Happy Holidays!
30. The Shield farewellOne of the programs that would help define basic cable as a network competitor, FX's The Shield ended its seven-year run this year, leaving (with The Wire also ending this season) television with absolutely zero great cop shows left. For seven years we watched Vic Mackey play bad cop and badder cop, and the finale saw him get a fitting punishment. .
29. Stan Marsh's post-Obama celebratingThe day after this year's presidential election, South Park showed a drunken pro-Obama Stan Marsh partying hard in the streets--and it was just what we needed. After the exhausting election, this episode was finally some media coverage that didn't make us sick to our stomach.
28. Eric Kripke's love for the Winchester BrothersWhen Supernatural creator Eric Kripke told TV.com that his sci-fi drama would always be about the relationship between its two demon-hunting siblings, he meant it. Season three had moments of heartfelt familial emotion, and season four is continuing the brotherly love. It's the core of what drives one of television's most underrate programs, and it's was going stronger than ever in 2008.
27. Booth and Bones' sexual tensionDo we want them to hook up? Do we want them to stay apart? Bones' leads are aching for it baaaaaaaad, but frankly, we think it's best if they never get together.
26. Everything about The SoupReality television has given us so much grief, but one great thing it has given us is E! Entertainment's The Soup. With host Joel McHale on board, the snarky clip show has reached its zenith. It doesn't matter that there is no budget; The Soup is a pure joy to watch and McHale says what we all wish we thought of first.
25. Changing of the guard on CSIWhen one of television's biggest shows loses its lead, there's always room for concern. That is, unless your replacement is Mr. Laurence Fishburne. Gil Grissom (William Petersen) may be on the outs of CSI, but Fishburne is entering the cast brilliantly. We'll miss Gil, but we got ourselves a whole Fish now.
How I Met Your Mother is still a thing of genius, but it's his turn as the lead in Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog that really caught our eye this year. Dr. Horrible was a work of passion, and Harris proved himself above the normal celeb.
23. Off-screen drama of Grey's AnatomyForget the stuff that was going on in Seattle Grace, let's focus on the happenings behind the scenes! The year started with Katherine Heigl withdrawing from the Emmys due to a lack of award-worthy material, and ended with talk of T.R. Knight asking to be released from his contract. But the biggest question mark was the firing of Brooke Smith, whose character Dr. Hahn simply walked away into a parking garage and was never heard from again.
22. Heroes admitting it has problemsUnfortunately one of the biggest stories of the year involved a one-time hit show reaching a new low. Heroes' fans may stick to their guns and think things are going just fine (yes, we read your comments), but the producers finally admitted that things could have been better and have made moves to bring this fan favorite back to its days of glory. Adding Pushing Daisies' Bryan Fuller sure won't hurt.
21. The opening credits of True BloodFLike the show itself, the opening credits (Warning: mature content) to True Blood are frenetic, definitely disturbing, and unapologetically perverse. Slinky strippers cut to Southern Baptist sermons, a molting locust swaps over to a fox being eaten by maggots, and the picturesque images of the bayous of Louisiana depict them full of both life and death. It's the show in a nutshell, and a piece of art.
Check out more TV.com lists here, and be sure to check back tomorrow for numbers 11-20!