2010 was a banner year for television, which means there was certainly no shortage of nominees for our third annual "Top 100 Everything" list. Here you'll find the shows, characters, and episodes that made 2010 amazing—as well as the behind-the-scenes players, trends, and TV-relevant happenings that helped shaped the culture of television this year.
We'll be posting 10 items each weekday through December 31, so check back often to see what made the cut!
The host of Survivor doesn't sugar-coat things in his online commentary about his show; he looks at it just as a fan would, and is critical of the players, the game, and the outcomes just like any other couch potato. Plus, he straight up said this season "[wasn't] one of our greatest." Knuckle bump for the honesty, Probst. Now go eat some fish on a stick.
69. The lovely leading ladies of Showtime
One amazing actress would be a score. Two would be divine. Three would be downright unfair. But four? Mary-Louise Parker (Weeds), Laura Linney (The Big C), Toni Collette (United States of Tara), and Edie Falco (Nurse Jackie) pretty much account for four of our personal Best Actress in a Comedy nominations.
68. Tim and Eric's great job!
Adult Swim's most insane program, Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!, wrapped up its five-season run with a slow-motion montage of its beloved characters dropping dead after drinking tainted breast milk... and it was surprisingly poignant.
Season 3 of FX's legal thriller wasted no time catching our attention with the reveal that Tom Shayes (Tate Donovan) was a goner. Donovan's performance was incredible (even by Damages' lofty standards), as were Season 3 additions Campbell Scott and Martin Short.
66. Todd Margaret's pet care
When the title character (played by David Cross) of The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret left his home in America for a job in London, he dumped 30 cans of tuna in his cat's food bowl and never looked back. This early gag set the pace for one of TV's funniest comedies this year. (Spoiler alert: The cat didn't make it.)
65. The imagination of Adventure Time
We're not sure whether it's created by a team of videogame-obsessed stoners or one of the world's great pop-art minds (we're guessing it's both!), but this Cartoon Network gem is a feast for the eyes and whichever part of your brain it is that controls creativity. It's like eating magic mushrooms without picking cow turds out of your teeth.
One of the most emotional TV episodes of this year dealt with sexual assault in a stirring way. Every member of the cast brought their A-game, but Kadee Strickland rose above the rest as the courageous victim of a brutal attack.
63. More progress for minority representation on television
There's still a long, long way to go, but new series Undercovers, Outsourced, and Hawaii Five-0 (to name a few) bucked the notion that major characters have to be pearly white. And major props to True Blood and 90210, who proved they don't have to be straight, either.
We love the artifacts (chameleon mines! The Minoan Trident!), the leads (Pete! Myka! Artie!), and the mysteries (spontaneous combustion! time travel!) of Syfy's newest hit. Plus, the series' lighter tone provides the perfect comfort food for a relaxing night in.
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