This Top 100 list is a bit like an advent calendar for television because you come back just about every day to see what goodies we've got in store. And if you press the DVD-drive eject button, a piece of chocolate will come out! (If it doesn't work, then you probably need to update your system software.) This third round covers the 70s, and we're dangerously close to getting to the good stuff. Not that the following items aren't good, but c'mon, the 70s? Who has time to make a list of things this long besides the loser (Tim) who's typing this out right now?
We'll trot out our picks 10 at a time, every weekday through the end of the year, so check back regularly to see what else made the cut or to learn how to count down from 100.
80. Damages says bye-bye
When Damages was airing on FX, it wasn't unusual to see it on several critics' Best Shows Of the Year lists. But poor ratings forced it to leave basic cable and spend the last few years on DirecTV where it continued to be a strong alternative to less daring fare. It's a shame it didn't stay in the spotlight, but it's destined to be one of those rediscovered gems that lives a long life as a streaming option on AmazoHuluFlix for many years down the line.
79. Tarrlok's duel with Korra
The great, intense action sequence in the episode "When Extremes Meet" topped itself with a doozy of a shocker: Tarrlok can bloodbend without a full moon!
78. Glee's big break-up
We don't want to give too much away, but in the episode "The Break-Up," someone broke up. Oh screw it, EVERYONE broke up. The only thing that's consistent about Glee is that it's inconsistent, but this episode proved that when it hits its marks, it can be great. And sad. Really, really sad.
77. Louie and the valley of the dolls
Nothing shows a father's devotion to his children like sawing off the top of a doll's head, peeing on it, and painting its face with melted crayons.
76. Ike Barinholtz, cleanup hitter
He may not yet be a household name (unless your household is particularly awesome), but chances are you know his face: Not only did Barinholtz's Russian pitcher (and "top DJ") contribute to an already excellent third season of Eastbound & Down, his late addition to The Mindy Project as a male nurse with a sordid history quickly became one of the biggest reasons to watch the new Fox comedy. Our wish for 2013? For Ike Barinholtz to appear on EVERY show at least once.
75. Fringe's "And now for something completely different..." moment
Given Fringe's penchant for the bizarre, you'd think this kind of thing wouldn't be abnormal, but when a tripping Walter Bishop was plucked from the ground by cartoon hands and inserted into an animated homage to Terry Gilliam/Monty Python we were shocked and delighted. Despite seeming drastically different on the surface, the more we think about it, the more Fringe and Monty Python are alike in their love of things that are completely different.
74. El Chupacabra on Comedy Bang Bang
Nick Kroll (The League) stopped by IFC's improv-podcast-turned-fake-talk-show as an outlandish Mexican radio DJ who loves to re-explain things and promote the internet in what one TV.com editor (Tim, the weird one) has deemed the funniest thing on TV this year. Add to that Jon Hamm's perfect straight-man routine, Reggie Watts' bizarre whatever he does, and Scott Aukerman's gentlemanly demeanor, and it's like the grading curve for the rest of comedy just got screwed.
73. Revenge gives the best engagement gift of all time
When Victoria Grayson half-sneeringly handed Emily an immaculately wrapped present and casually mentioned that Emily should hold off on opening it, we knew right away the contents wouldn't exactly be a Tiffany bracelet. But it wasn't until a few episodes later—after Emily and Daniel had broken off their engagement—that the all-but-forgotten gift was finally unwrapped, and what did it contain? NOTHING. Nothing at all! Victoria smirked something about how she knew Emily and Daniel wouldn't last, but all meaning was lost because we were too busy laughing at that woman's audacity. That empty box was lined with satin and everything. Nothing like a labor-intensive $100 craft project to really put the neighbor lady in her place!
Previously: Revenge's Season 1 Finale: Emily Is Batman
72. Hot damn, it's Venus van Dam
FX hyped this Sons of Anarchy moment as a surprise cameo, but that sort of thing rarely lives up to expectations. That is, until Walton Goggins (The Shield, Justified) walked into the room with big ol' fake titties, a sassy attitude, and assless chaps as Venus van Dam, a transsexual employed by SAMCRO to blackmail a whale of a man. Rumor has it Goggins didn't let the rest of the cast see him 'til they started filming, leaving star Charlie Hunnam barely able to get his lines out as two very large prosthetic mounds bounced in his face.
71. Will Ferrell tries to sell you beer
This Super Bowl ad (which unfortunately didn't run nationally) for the beer that you only start drinking because you've already downed 15 good beers—and all the rubbing alcohol in the house is gone—is Ferrell at its best.
Check back tomorrow for items 70-61!