Entertain Us (19-12-2017): Best of the small screen

THE end of the year is all about family, friends, food and compiling lists of our favourite moments in popular culture. This week, the YP Country Times journalists took some time to talk about what caught their eyes on the small screens.

Salomae Haselgrove

  • 3. Stranger Things 2. Normally 1980s sci-fi isn’t my thing but this show has a gripping storyline and great characters played by insanely talented actors, who bridge the eccentricity into a way anyone can follow.
  • 2. Brooklyn Nine-Nine. After season three of the police comedy looked close to jumping the shark in some parts, season four offered redemption. Andy Samberg’s comedic genius still steals the show but last season it dealt with some more serious themes, notably, Terry (Terry Crews) confronting racism while on the job.
  • 1. The Good Place. The storyline, themes and characters of this afterlife exploration show are all top notch and oh my goodness THE TWISTS. It’s original, keeps you guessing and to an extent makes you think about the life you’re living.

Rhiannon Koch

  • Notable mentions: Any home renovation/flip show, Have You Been Paying Attention?, Utopia, Rosehaven, Growing up Gracefully.
  • 3. Mustangs FC. Last year I outed myself as a fan of the house flip reality TV model. This year it’s teenage-based TV drama. Mustangs FC follows a rag tag bunch of girls who find friendship, success and themselves on a soccer pitch. Schmaltzy, sure. But it has Pia Miranda!
  • 2. The Letdown. I can’t relate to the “having a baby” component of the show but co-creators Alison Bell and Sarah Scheller deliver the laughs. The really underrated Australian cast is also well worth a look.
  • 1. The Good Place. I’ve already dedicated a whole column to this. There’s no need to say more. Except hurry up January when the second half of season two airs. Also we’re getting season three. So yay!

Sonny Coombs

  • 3. Feud. Director and producer Ryan Murphy, American Horror Story, Glee and Nip/Tuck, is an absolute genius. His eight-episode mini-series portrayed the feud between Hollywood icons Bette Davis and Joan Crawford during and after filming What Ever Happened to Baby Jane. His next instalment will focus Prince Charles and Princess Diana.
  • 2. The Real Housewives of Melbourne. My list would never be complete without some sort of Real Housewives inclusion. It’s hard choosing just one but Melbourne tops my list just because I was so excited to have it back after an 18-month hiatus.
  • 1. Will and Grace. Will and Grace returned to our screens after more than a decade. The show follows the relationship between Will Truman, a gay lawyer, and interior designer Grace Adler who live together in New York City. The cast is great but Megan Mullally as Karen Walker steals the show with classic lines like, “I’ve been like a mother to that girl. I’ve locked her in her room, told her she was fat, and once I even left her in a store!”

Lucy Short

  • Honourable mentions:  The Keepers, a Netflix documentary about the murder of a nun and the massive cover up that ensued; Law and Order: SVU, my long-time favourite which will make my list every year.
  • 3. Girls. The sixth and final season of Girls was my favourite yet. It was equal parts hilarious, sad and infuriating. Show endings are tough to get right but they did a good job of this one.
  • 2. Big Little Lies. Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern, Shailene Woodley, Zoe Kravitz. Brilliant cast and acting, great script, high-quality drama. Would definitely recommend.
  • 1. Game of Thrones. Season seven did not disappoint. While much of the season was basically setting things up for the eighth and final season, there was still plenty of action. This show is like no other, I’m devastated there is only one more season.

Nick Perry

  • 3. Game of Thrones. This season was marred by dumb plots (pretty sure the writers wanted an ice dragon even if it meant the most pointless expedition in television history). But it still managed to thrill more than anything else on TV.
  • 2. Stranger Things 2. Like all good sequels, Stranger Things’ second season expanded the show’s themes and further developed some key characters. My worry for season three? It will probably be based on that one bad episode from season two in which viewers met Eleven’s cousin and her band of dorky punk-criminals.
  • 1. Better Call Saul. This Breaking Bad spin-off has been good if not spectacular, but season three lifted the bar. As viewers learn more about what has shaped dodgy lawyer Saul Goodman and his lethal sidekick Mike Ehrmantraut, the show goes deep on Saul’s relationship with his mentally ill brother Chuck, a former gun lawyer. Season three was captivating throughout and its ending was devastating.

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