17 December 2016

Christine's Top 10 Favorite TV Shows of All Time

So, yes, I realize that "Captivated Reading" is, indeed, a blog for--and about--books. And, I also realize that TV and books are pretty different forms of entertainment. But, seeing as how this is the 21st century, and I'm pretty sure most of my fellow book-lovers are also TV-lovers, I figured I couldn't go wrong with a post dedicated to all things television.

So, without further ado, here is my comprehensive list of (what I consider) the best EVER television--complete with an assortment of animated gifs!!

10. Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Sarah Michelle Gellar takes on the role of Buffy Summers in this TV version of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," based on the film of the same title, which starred Kristy Swanson. Buffy is a Slayer, one in a long line of young women chosen for a specific mission: to seek out and destroy vampires, demons and other forces of darkness. Unlike her predecessors, Buffy establishes a group of supportive friends who aids her in her battles with evil, including Willow, Xander and Cordelia. Her battles with evil are frequent, since Sunnydale, where Buffy and friends live, sits atop a gateway to the realm of the demons.
Ohhhh, Buffy, how I do love you!

So, I'm going to be completely honest. This show could've had the worst writing and plot lines in the world and it would've still gone on my list.
A lot of my love for this show stems from the fact that it's nostalgic for me. I started watching this show when I was fourteen years old. Because it was, essentially, my first TV love it could be garbage and I wouldn't know any better.

As luck would have it, however, "Buffy" is not garbage and has not only wormed its way into my heart, but the heart of critics and brainiacs all over. Thanks to Joss Whedon's superb writing skills, "Buffy" will always be considered a cult classic that pleases all ages.

Angel + Buffy 4eva!!!

Oh, the angst!

9. Call the Midwife

Adapted by Heidi Thomas from the best-selling memoirs of Jennifer Worth, this drama series is a moving, funny, colorful look at midwifery and family in 1950s East End London. It follows newly qualified midwife Jenny, who joins an eccentric, lovable community of nuns who are nurses at Nonnatus House. Jenny is surprised to find herself at a convent -- she thought she was being sent to a small private hospital -- and is initially daunted by her surroundings, most notably the formidable Sister Evangelina and the unconventional Sister Monica Joan. But Jenny gradually begins to find her way and develops incredible friendships among the nurses, as they are drawn into the lives and homes of the women and families they treat.

I discovered this show in its second season when I still had a couple of babies in the house.

For those of you who haven't seen this, just know that it's one of those shows that can have moments that, literally, make you "LOL". But, more often, "Midwives" brings a stark reminder of what giving birth was like in the not-so-distant past.
It's scary, heartwarming, and more than once brought tears to my eyes.

8. Homeland

When Marine Sgt. Nicholas Brody returns home following eight years in captivity, CIA agent Carrie Mathison thinks he has turned and is connected to a terror plot to be carried out on American soil, and she engages him in a dangerous game of cat and mouse that puts America's national security at risk. Later on, Carrie gets a promotion and returns to the front lines overseas. She is assigned to one of the CIA's most volatile and dangerous stations in the Middle East, where she is in the heart of battle in the war on terror. Years later, after being disillusioned and placing herself in a self-imposed exile in Berlin, Carrie becomes estranged from the CIA.

So, I'm really not big into political dramas. I mean, my hubby just loves "House of Cards", and while I can respect the acting chops of Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright, I just can't really relate to the characters. And, for my relating to the characters is a big deal.

Which is why I can get past the "politicalness" of "Homeland".

Claire Danes portrays the affectingly flawed Carrie Mathison who struggles with being bipolar while trying to maintain her significant career with the CIA. Throw in some is-he-evil-or-isn't-he drama, all tied up in a big suspenseful bow and "Homeland" is the political drama that can keep even my mercurial attention.

Plus, there's this:

Oh, Quinn..

7. I Love Lucy

Lucy Ricardo is the wacky wife of Cuban bandleader Ricky Ricardo. Living in New York, Ricky tries to succeed in show business while Lucy -- always trying to help -- usually manages to get in some kind of trouble that drives Ricky crazy. Their best friends are Fred and Ethel Mertz, who are also their landlords. Usually, Ethel becomes Lucy's less-than-willing partner in crime. Ricky and Lucy welcomed little Ricky in 1953, whose birth was a national TV event. Later in the show's run, the Ricardos (and the Mertzes) moved to Hollywood, where Ricky tried to become a movie star.

I'll just leave these right here:

If you haven't seen this show, I don't think I can help you.

6. The Office

This U.S. adaptation -- set at a paper company in Scranton, Pa. -- has a similar documentary style to that of the Ricky Gervais-led British original. It features the Dunder-Mifflin staff, which includes characters based on roles in the British show -- and, quite possibly, people with whom you work in your office. There's Jim, the likable employee who's a bit of an every man. Jim has a thing for receptionist-turned-sales-rep Pam -- because office romances are always a good idea! There's also Dwight, the co-worker who is successful but devoid of social skills and common sense.

You guys!! This show! Look, I actually don't normally drift towards comedies. Maybe that says something about me; I take life too seriously, I hate to laugh, who knows... But, every once in awhile I'll find one that I can't not watch. "The Office" hits every mark with witty banter, office pranks, and even some sincere emotional moments that only a show about a group of close friends can bring.

5. Outlander

After serving as a British Army nurse in World War II, Claire Randall is enjoying a second honeymoon in Scotland with husband Frank, an MI6 officer looking forward to a new career as an Oxford historian. Suddenly, Claire is transported to 1743 and into a mysterious world where her freedom and life are threatened. To survive, she marries Jamie Fraser, a strapping Scots warrior with a complicated past and a disarming sense of humor. A passionate relationship ensues, and Claire is caught between two vastly different men in two inharmonious lives. "Outlander" is adapted from the best-selling books by Diana Gabaldon.

This show has basically become a show that I can't live without. It's the only reason why I have the Starz Channel, if I'm being completely honest. And it's not even on right now. But, just knowing that I have access to reruns makes me heaps glad!

I've always been fascinated with all things Scottish...And time-traveling. Which is why I started reading this series. When I found out it was being made into a show, I just about had a fit. A good one.

The acting is superb and the story is so stinkin' intriguing. And Jamie and Claire are such a realistic couple--sans the time-travel of course. They have a pure love but also don't put up with each other's bull. Relationship goals, people.

4. Friends

Three young men and three young women - of the BFF kind - live in the same apartment complex and face life and love in New York. They're not above sticking their noses into one another's businesses and swapping romantic partners, which always leads to the kind of hilarity average people will never experience - especially during breakups.

I'm assuming that if you're reading this, then that means you don't live under a rock or in a country where they ban awesome things like American TV shows. And if that's the case, then I'm not going to expand much on my love of Friends, because I'm sure you've heard of it before.

Now let's "pi-vot!" 😂

3. Game of Thrones

George R.R. Martin's best-selling book series "A Song of Ice and Fire" is brought to the screen as HBO sinks its considerable storytelling teeth into the medieval fantasy epic. It's the depiction of two powerful families -- kings and queens, knights and renegades, liars and honest men -- playing a deadly game for control of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros, and to sit atop the Iron Throne. Martin is credited as a co-executive producer and one of the writers for the series, which was filmed in Northern Ireland and Malta.

This is where my list starts getting complicated for me. Because these last three shows are all pretty much my favorite. So, trying to decide which order to put them in is like trying to decided which of my kids I like better. I mean, let's be honest, it just depends on the day...

Just kidding.

Seriously, though, these last three, let's just go ahead and assume that even though this is listed as "#3", that's just because I don't want to do a lame "Three-way tie".

There's really not much I can say about this show without coming off as ridiculously gushy. And, I do that enough with some of my book reviews. So, let's just say that if you haven't seen "GoT", you need to get on it. Stat.

Still not convinced? Okay, well, maybe Jon Snow can convince you...

2. The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead is an American horror drama television series developed by Frank Darabont, based on the comic book series of the same name by Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, and Charlie Adlard.

Again, I'm trying to control my gushing. I mean, I could gush about how badass Rick and Daryl are. I really could. But, I won't. I won't talk about they, as a team, can basically take over the world...While remaining super-dreamy. Nope. Not gonna gush.

1. Gilmore Girls

Set in a storybook Connecticut town populated by an eclectic mix of dreamers, artists and everyday folk, this multigenerational drama about family and friendship centers around Lorelai Gilmore and her daughter, Rory. Lorelai owns the town's bed-and-breakfast, the Dragonfly Inn, with best friend/chef Sookie, and contends with weekly dinners with eccentric, well-off parents Richard and Emily Gilmore (who always have something to say about their daughter's life). After high school, Rory attends Yale University but frequently returns to Stars Hollow to visit her mom.

This show has been a favorite since, what feels like, forever. Having a close relationship with my mom--who was also pretty young when she had me--always let me relate to Lorelai and Rory.

Also, the extremely whimsical town of Stars Hollow--I need to find a town like this!

I think my husband's head exploded when I told him what my list was. No kidding. So, if you're like my hubby and think my list sucks, please comment and let me know what you think. Also, I could use some validation--so if you love my list, you should really leave a comment.

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