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Blah, blah, blah, peak TV, there's a lot of shows on, etc, etc, you know the drill. Except, it's also true: there wasn't just more TV on the air in 2016, there was better TV on the air. Our editors have watched a ton of it, though, and worked out our picks for the 10 best shows of 2016.

And if you disagree? Don't worry, you can vote for your own top shows of the year, here.

10. This is Us

NBC's family drama from Crazy Stupid Love writer Dan Fogelman is the breakout hit of the Fall. This Is Us has managed to tap into hearts nationwide and endear them to the Pearson family, spearheaded by Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) and Rebecca (Mandy Moore). The show flips between Jack and Rebecca raising their three children in the past, and the present where the three kids are adults with families and careers of their own. Each week is a tender look at what makes and breaks a family, both with heart wrenching confessions, touching speeches and well-crafted humor. While This Is Us may have drawn people in with a huge plot twist in its pilot, the real strength of this drama is that it can be endearing and captivating without having to rely on fancy plot devices like time travel or super powers. The show thrives on relationships, and its well-rounded extremely talented cast keep you coming back every week. -- Megan Vick

9. Westworld

HBO's sci-fi puzzle box isn't without its flaws, but they're easy to overlook because Westworld is asking all the right questions about artificial intelligence and technology -- questions that will become science fact in no time. The series has also rallied the internet hive-mind to examine every frame for clues about the show's myriad secrets, the likes of which we haven't seen since Lost. But what's really made the show pop is its juxtaposition of heavy science-fiction themes with the classic western genre, combining immediate physical threats of classic cinema with timeless existential dilemmas to make a show that attacks your intelligence from multiple angles. And with so many directions the show can go in further seasons, there's no telling where it will take us. -- Tim Surette

8. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

Even if it wasn't the only hour-long comedy-musical with a radically feminist message on TV, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend would be delightfully unique. Creator and star Rachel Bloom takes full advantage of the show's musical format, taking serious topics -- such as alcoholism, depression and coming out as bisexual -- to theatrical and often cringe-worthy new levels. But the destructive behavior of the main characters isn't just included for easy laughs or drama. Instead, the show forces its characters to face their issues head-on and -- in its own, often comical, way -- allows them to grow. -- Sadie Gennis

7. The Good Place

It's rare to need a "previously on" for a sitcom, but The Good Place is serialized in a way that's never quite been seen in a show this funny before. And its big question -- "what does it mean to be a good person?" -- is more like something from a heavy drama, too. It's by far the most creative and unique network comedy of the year. But all of that wouldn't matter much if it wasn't also laugh-out-loud hilarious; but a writing staff heavy on Parks and Rec alumni and an ensemble cast anchored by immensely likable performances by Kristen Bell and Ted Danson keep the laughs coming while the plot unfolds. -- Liam Mathews

6. Rectify

In its fourth and final season, Sundance's Southern drama Rectify continues to be a quiet revelation that stands out from its louder, more obvious peers through a subtle, award-worthy performance by star Aden Young and the beautiful character work detailing the human condition that's made possible by the careful direction of series creator Ray McKinnon. Though it remains as slow-moving as ever, the truth about what happened to Hanna all those years ago is bubbling near the surface, and as climactic as the reveal may be, the series' exploration of the effects of trauma on one man, his family and the town it ripped apart two decades prior remain the highlight of what has become a masterclass in storytelling. It's a shame more people haven't watched the show over its run, but don't be surprised if Rectify lives on long after the series finale airs and we bid goodbye to the haunted world of Daniel Holden. It's that good. -- Kaitlin Thomas

5. Atlanta

Donald Glover's surrealist rap music dramedy -- the hip-hop Twin Peaks, as he called it when debuting it to the press in January -- had a simple premise: a man-child bumbling through life in Atlanta begins managing his cousin rap career. But it became clear from the very first frame that Atlanta was so much more than that: social commentary; a love letter to black culture; and a critique of it, too. Wildly unpredictable -- going from scary violence, to dark humor, to weighty emotional scenes in a flash -- Atlanta became an instant favorite of critics and viewers, becoming the most-watched comedy debut on basic cable since Inside Amy Schumer in 2013. Yes, it's that good.-- Malcolm Venable

4. The Night Of

HBO's long-gestating limited crime series proved to be worth the wait. Over the course of eight episodes, the show crafted a compelling whodunit whose twists and turns pointed to a different conclusion at the end of each installment. But viewers soon realized the question of Naz's (Riz Ahmed) guilt or innocence was beside the point. Though The Night Of drew to a satisfying conclusion and cleared up the central mystery, the questions it raised still loom large when all was said and done: questions about the validity of the criminal justice system; rampant Islamophobia; and socioeconomic tensions that pervade New York, and the rest of the country. The night might be over, but its impact is extended way beyond the case itself. -- Liz Raftery

3. Better Call Saul

Vince Gilligan is a storytelling master. The second season of Better Call Saul, his and Peter Gould's prequel to Breaking Bad, is vastly different than its predecessor. Where every moment of Breaking Bad was white-knuckle tense, Better Call Saul is slow-paced and purposefully, misleadingly meandering: a season's worth of set-up, turns out to be as detailed and deliberate as calligraphy. Every piece, from writing to acting to color scheme, is executed with unparalleled proficiency.-- Liam Mathews

2. Stranger Things

Who would have predicted at the beginning of the year that a weird, '80s throwback Netflix sci-fi series starring Winona Ryder and a cast of unknown kids would go on to become the obsession of millions? But with pitch perfect casting, intricate production design that made the show seem like it was lifted out of the Reagan era, and a simple, scary, and fun mythology, Stranger Things was a refreshing change from the grim reality that's gripped most of modern television. It helps that new stars like Millie Bobby Brown and the rest of the cast were as engaging -- if not more so -- than the rest of the adult cast. We won't forget Eleven, the Upside Down, or even poor Barb any time soon. 2017, and the second season, can't get here quickly enough. -- Alex Zalben

1. The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

Twenty years after his real-life murder trial, O.J. Simpson once again captivated television viewers in this addictive miniseries from Ryan Murphy, which was really about so much more than Simpson and his (alleged) victims. Addressing topics like racism, sexism and the injustices of the criminal justice system, The People v. O.J. Simpson felt more relevant than ever in 2016, and featured standout, award-winning (and in some cases, career-defining) performances from Sarah Paulson, Sterling K. Brown and Courtney B. Vance, among many others in a star-studded cast. If nothing else, the fact that we're still thinking about and talking about The People v. O.J. Simpson, even though it premiered way back in February, makes it our clear pick for number one show of 2016. -- Liz Raftery

Check out the rest of our Best of 2016:

Best TV Performances of 2016

Best TV Episodes of 2016

...And vote for your own Best of 2016:

Your Best TV Shows of 2016

Your Best TV Performances of 2016

Your Best TV Episodes of 2016

Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 2/14/2017

Season 1 : Episode 15

Next Episode

TONIGHT AT 10PM

Season 1 : Episode 16

89 Comments
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Did everyone forget about Sense8?
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Instead of spamming all comments:

In the Featured Community Posts I'm sorting out our OWN favs! Join the ranks of voters. We need your shows!

Welcome!
/Dave
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There is NO way ACS should be #1, or that it would be if America was not still deeply infected with racial and political divide sprinkled with a side dish of celebrity frenzy. It is an average drama at best, with terrible acting by Schwimmer and only marginally better by Cuba (while Paulson DID hit it out of the park). Yes, production was great and yes, there is always that voayuristic need to know what went on behind the scenes, but man, this is NOT a great show, America! Better Call Saul should be on top because of all the right reasons.
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In the Featured Community Posts I'm sorting out our OWN favs! Join the ranks of voters. We need your shows!
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I'm surprised, like many, that existing shows aren't listed, my person top 10 of 2016:

#1: Chance - top new show in 2016 in my opinion, very different and a great cast
#2: Start Up - again, great new show
#3: The People v. O.J. Simpson - enjoyed this, very well produced
#4: Life in pieces
#5: Power
#6: Dice
#7: The Night Of
#8: Better Call Saul
#9: Ballers
#10: Shameless (US) - still as entertaining as ever!

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Would you mind if I insert your picks in The Users Top 10 for tv.com (not TV-Guid)? I have a list running atm.
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So The Good Place, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, and This is Us are better than Game of Thrones, The Americans, and Narcos. Get the F out of here. Realistically I could name about 15 other shows that are easily better too. I remember when tv.com used to be worth a shit. First, you stopped giving premiere dates and started directing people to other websites, and now you're trying to hype ridiculous shows.
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Please forgive me if I say this, but HOW is "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend" a good show? Has The CW even looked at its rating charts?! The show is a viewership failure nationwide. I guess they've either forgotten or ignored the #1 rule in channel history: "No Ratings, No Show". I'm not saying its an awful show, but its really not doing so great. And to tell you the truth, I feel bad for the people who work on the show. They work their asses off to make the show a hit, but unfortunately its still not enough for the viewers at home. Either The CW cancels the show or keep renewing it until they realize the show is not doing very well with ratings.
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serious, this is ur best 10?
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Oh yeah. I forgot to mention: Halt and Catch Fire ! Nobody watched it but it was awesome. And we got a season four. If that isn't a miracle i don't no what is. I can assure you that it isn't only for nerds like me. It has something for everyone. I mean it. Watch it.
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* know
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Why so serious? Supergirl brought some real joy in my life.
But yeah. It's not exactly a prestige drama. I've seen all of the above. except for the sitcoms (still hate them) and they were pretty good. I highly recommend them. Westworld would be my number one. Humans season two (not aired in the US yet) which has a similar theme as Westworld is also not bad. But don't be sad it will be aired in the US on AMC in 2017.
The best show of the year was: the presidential campaign. Now that's entertainment. I'm still hoping it was only a tv show. Reality will probably sink in on January, 20. Gimme a countdown:
Welcome to reality. It sucks.
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dang.. was all good til i saw yr link.. sniff.. :/
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In the Featured Community Posts I'm sorting out our OWN favs! Join the ranks of voters. We need your shows!
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1. Stranger Things
2. Westworld
3. Better Call Saul
4. American Crime Story
5. Orange is the New Black
6. Penny Dreadful
7. Game of Thrones
8. Narcos
9. Orphan Black
10. Luke Cage
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10/ The Fall
9/ The People v. O.J. Simpson
8/ Westworld
7/ The Night Of
6/ Transparent
5/ Stranger Things
4/ Better Call Saul

3/ The Americans
4/ The Leftovers
1/ Game of Thrones

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Maybe Westward in 10th place.
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At least an actual good show is number one on the list and not some reality show or anything with Amy Schumer or Lena Dunham
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HEY! If anyone is left pretending to run this site anymore -you can shut it down now -you were very successful - you ran all of us off. We are all discussing that EPIC Westworld Season 1 Finale on websites that give a shit - that weren't destroyed in the name of tvguide! I'm GLAD the Westworld Finale will not be discussed here - TV.com is not worthy of such things - not anymore.

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TOP NEW Series of 2016:

  1. 10. The Magicians (bit of a cheat, as it's first ep was in DEC 2015)
  2. 9. You, Me and the Apocalypse
  3. 8. Westworld
  4. 7. The Good Place
  5. 6. Stan Lee's Lucky Man
  6. 5. Stranger Things
  7. 4. The Shannara Chronicles
  8. 3. BrainDEAD
  9. 2. Atlanta
  10. 1. Marvel's Luke Cage
TOP Series which RETURNED for 2016:

  1. 15. Grace and Frankie
  2. 14. Penny Dreadful
  3. 13. UnReal
  4. 12. Mr. Robot
  5. 11. Scream
  6. 10. Game of Thrones
  7. 9. Silicon Valley
  8. 8. Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
  9. 7. Ash vs. The Evil Dead
  10. 6. Younger
  11. 5. 12 Monkeys
  12. 4. Poldark
  13. 3. You're The Worst
  14. 2. Schitt's Creek
  15. 1. Jane the Virgin

With shout-outs to:

More+
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Good lists!
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Thanks... The one thing this page is right about, 2016 was an excellent year for Good Television ;)
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Westworld only on 9? You're kidding, right?
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What happened to Narcos s2 patrón?
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Why is there no Game of Thrones among the Top10?

And no other of the Netflix shows than Stranger Things?

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TV.com phoned this in
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Can someone please explain what has happened to this site?

For a variety of reasons I didn't frequent TV.com for 6 months and now I'm back something has certainly changed and not for the better.

What's happened to the episode reviews we used to get daily/weekly for a variety of shows?

Has this site been taken over by TV Guide?
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Yep it died a badly announced but quick death once the bland, reality TV-focused articles from TV Guide became the main fare over here on TV.com and most articles were actually just TV Guide content...
Sad but true...
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Ha! You sound like that classic sci-fi character: frozen in suspended animation, wakes up in a terrible, dystopian future. Well, welcome to the new reality.
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Read these:


http://www.tv.com/topics/feedback/community/post/what-happened-to-tvcom-in-the-last-months-1474143270/
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Thanks much appreciated. Sad.
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CBS, the owner of TV.com bought TVGuide, and they prefer a bland, generic site like that over a site with witty reviews, interesting opinions and a strong, active userbase like TV.com, so they ruined it on purpose.

(Well, I guess it was on purpose, because when you look at the decisions they made in the last months - no-one can be that stupid...)

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Thanks for reply. RIP tv.com.

Where to now?
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Good question - not sure anyone's found an answer yet...

TV Without Pity is returning in 2017 so perhaps that'll be the place? http://screenertv.com/twop/
Here's to hoping...
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I think I must be the only person in the world who watches my personal choice for best show. Ripper Street. If you've never watched it, I promise you if you even watch just the first episode, you'll binge the whole thing in one weekend.
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Of course The Americans doesn't make the Top 10 because Tv.com has become a farce even more bias towards new shows than before.
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Halt and catch fire is much better than any of this shows
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FYI - Don't click on the links in the article to Vote For Your Favorite Show - because - it won't be happening here. I KNEW they were trying to kill this site - those links ALL go to tvguide's website. I predict TV.com will not even exist come this time next year - CBS and TVguide will just use the TV.COM domain name as a bouncer that will take you right to tvguide. Fuck that. To whoever ruined TV.com - congrats - you did a great job - I'm sure there's a job waiting for you in the Trump administration if you'ld like to move on to destroying bigger and better things now...

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Westworld should be #1. Normally I would go into detail about why and fill out the remaining 9 - but since the people that run TV.com don't give a shit about this site anymore, I'm just not gonna bother... :(
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The Flash should be on here
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The Flash is a mediocre teeny soap just with superheroes, that constantly defies logic and basic physics and has a plotholes-per-episode ratio almost as high as Legends of Tomorrow (and that means a lot!).
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As far as I'm concerned: Preacher should be up there in the top 10.

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Unlike a lot of others, I'm glad This Is Us made the list. The show is quite enjoyable (to me, at least).

Having said that, I now have to question if Liam has ever actually watched Breaking Bad. I mean, to say "every moment was white-knuckle tense" (paraphrasing) is a bit much. Like BCS, Breaking Bad had many, MANY slow and deliberate episodes. So how he came up with that description boggles my mind.
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Shows of 2016 I've watched ranked:
  1. 8. It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia
  2. 7. Preacher
  3. 6.The Night Of
  4. 5. Silicon Valley
  5. 4. Atlanta
  6. 3. Game of Thrones
  7. 2. Westworld
  8. 1. The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

Have to say I have enjoyed every single one of these very much.
So 2016 was a great year imo.

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Hey, where is Lucifer?!?!?!
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Lucifer is shit. Get over it.
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Disappointing not to see the mould-breaking Fleabag (a BBC-Amazon collaboration) up there.
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Westworld and The Path would be on my list but it has been nearly a year so i am finding it hard to remember what shows i absolutely loved this year - Maybe Stranger Things

Didn't see what was so good about This Is Us - boring characters, boring storyline and reveals just for the sake of it - it felt like a manipulation

The Good Place is good but best of year??? It's funny, Ted Danson is the king and all but where else can the show go? it seems like one of those 'not for everyone' type of shows that gets cancelled pretty quickly

The problem with Atlanta is characters - it's funny because Donald is one of the most multi-talented guys around but i just couldn't connect with ANY character - i saw Troy every time i saw Donald, i hated his on-off Girlfriend and his cousin and his cousin's dim-witted friend were just not interesting enough to invest in - but like i said, well-written and funny - but another one of those 'not for everyone' comedies
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Westworld rocks - (finally) the heir apparent to LOST we've all been waiting for. Especially the most recent three episodes - and if the internet is correct - we're in for an insane reveal in the finale this Sunday. Seeing as how Jonathan Nolan has said this is basically Westworld Season 0 - leading into the full Westworld story that will start next season - I'm even MORE excited to see just what Abrams and Nolan have in store for us!
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the heir apparent to LOST we've all been waiting for

Never watched The Leftovers?? That's the new LOST in every way :P
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How many did TV.com review each this year? That's a better sign of "best"-ness than throwing together a list in the last month of the year.
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Unfortunately tvguide.com has alot of errors and they end up here so it's a no win situation. I remember when this site had the viewers vote their favorites instead of what TPTB deem to be exceptional.
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Does TV.com even do reviews anymore? I don't think they do...
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Well, "republish them from TVGuide." I'd settle for that.
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I loved the in-depth and detailed "Top 10" lists that Tim, Kaitlin and the rest of the old TV.com staff had done in recent years. Really hope that do these again this year.
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I wouldn't bet on it.
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This Is Us? Meh, Gave up after halfway through the first episode. Just hated the characters.

The Good Place. Well yeah Kristen Bell is great in it.
#9 Westworld. That is too low on this list.
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Personally, I find This Is Us as just so so. If my PVR ever gets seriously full and need space, it wouldn't bother me to delete and stop watching. And I watched the Good Place for awhile but it stopped being funny and I quit. Doesn't hit my funny bone.
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