2019 was definitely the year that we branched out in terms of telly. Normally, we stick to our usual boxsets and reruns, but this year we went for quite a few new bits. Well, it wasn’t exactly new new, but it was stuff we haven’t seen before, which I’m counting as new. So, as we’re coming to the end of 2019, I thought I’d take a look back over some of my favourite TV shows of the year. While I’ve mainly included whole series of shows we’ve been watching, I’ve also featured a few specific seasons/episodes of shows that have really stood out this year too. Enjoy!
Even though Fleabag originally began back in 2016, this was the year that I (and from what I’ve read, countless others) discovered it properly. While admittedly, it was a little difficult to get into during the first episode, it’s worth persevering, as it just continues to get better, especially as it goes into the second series. Phoebe Waller-Bridge is so relatable throughout the whole thing, and I especially love the Godmother character, played by Olivia Coleman. Not to mention the Hot Priest. He is definitely rather hot.
Again, this originally started in 2018, but we discovered it this year and it was definitely one of our top TV highlights. To be honest, our love of Fleabag got us into Killing Eve, after we found out it’s also written by Phoebe Waller-Bridge. That and the fact we were big fans of Sandra Oh in Grey’s Anatomy. I genuinely knew this would be a show for me after the first scene of the first series – with the child in the ice cream parlour – Villanelle is mood. Not only does Killing Eve keep you hooked from start to finish, but it’s funny, it’s clever, and Jodie Comer is just bloody fantastic.
Orange is the New Black – Season 7
We were a month or two behind on the final season of Orange is the New Black, but it was well worth the wait. There were so many memorable bits from this season, and the final episode was just perfection. I won’t spoil it for anyone who hasn’t seen it, but let’s just say I felt it was a great ending and they did it justice.
You can watch all 7 seasons of Orange is the New Black on Netflix.
The Big Bang Theory – Season 12
The Big Bang Theory has been a part of our life since we were at university, and the news that season 12 would be the final one genuinely upset me. The last couple of seasons were a bit disappointing, but they really brought it back with season 12. Overall the final episode was brilliantly done, and there were plenty of laughs.
You can watch all 12 seasons of The Big Bang Theory on Netflix, or catch reruns daily on E4.
Grey’s Anatomy – Season 15 Episode 19 – Silent All These Years
Regular readers will know we’re big fans of Grey’s Anatomy in our house, but a special recognition has to go to this episode. You may have heard about this episode, with one scene in particular being praised massively. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but essentially, the episode revolves around a woman who has been admitted after a sexual assault, and as she’s wheeled off to surgery, all of the women in the hospital line up in the corridor in support of her. The episode is an incredibly difficult watch, and may be triggering for some, but this particular scene will go down in history:
This Way Up
As a fan of Aisling Bea’s stand-up, we were quite keen to start watching her new sitcom. It follows Aine, who attempts to return to normal after leaving rehab as a result of a nervous breakdown. Even though there’s quite a strong mental health theme and a few heart-wrenching scenes, there’s plenty of funny moments and in places it’s awfully relatable.
The End of the Fucking World – Season 2
We originally got into the first season last year, and we were thrilled when we found out it was coming back for a second this year. It definitely lived up to the first season, and the introduction of new character Bonnie added a little something extra.
Black Mirror – Season 5
I only really got into Black Mirror last year, so I was raring to go when season 5 landed on Netflix this year. While there were only 3 episodes, they still did a pretty good job with some rather memorable episodes. I know a lot of people were big fans of Striking Vipers and Smithereens (shout out to Andrew Scott aka the Hot Priest in Fleabag), but my favourite genuinely was Rachel, Jack and Ashley Too, purely because there was a fair bit of comedic value. Miley Cryus as a sassy AI doll just cracked me up in places.
Watch seasons 1 to 5 of Black Mirror on Netflix.
You may remember I briefly mentioned this is a post I wrote earlier this year. If you’ve not seen this I strongly suggest you give it a watch. Pure is based on the book by Rose Cartwright, and follows Marnie, who suffers from a form of OCD known as ‘Pure O.’ It shines a light on a form of OCD that isn’t all that well known but does it in a humorous way. The character of Marnie is loveable AF and while the form of OCD she has is different to mine, I found her highly relatable in places. I’m hoping to read the book in 2020 and I sincerely hope they bring it back for a second series too.
Catch up with Pure on All4.
I’ve been a fan of Ricky Gervais’ stand-up for a while, but not so much his TV shows. I was never really a big fan of The Office or Extras for example. However, I heard so many good things about After Life, that we decided to give it a go. It follows Tony, whom after the death of his wife decides to punish the world for it by doing and saying whatever he wants. The overall subject matter is heartbreaking and you really feel for his character, but the humour is so wonderfully dark that you end up laughing as much as you do fighting back the tears.
You can watch the first and second seasons of After Life on Netflix.
This was quite a difficult one to get into but I’m glad we stuck with it because it’s bloody funny. Overall the set-up was a bit difficult to get used to – from the outside it appears to be your average American high-school sitcom, but it’s only when you watch it you realise the whole thing is set in a British high school. It’s not like your average school though – the students wear their own clothes and have lockers, for example. That was never something we had! It follows Otis – a socially awkward teenager who’s mother is a sex therapist – who sets up a business with one of his classmates in order to help fellow students with their own sexual problems. It sounds cringe AF, and honestly, in places, it is. However, there’s loads of funny moments and the show doesn’t shy away from more difficult issues such as sexuality and abortion either.
Watch the first and second season of Sex Education on Netflix.
What were your favourite TV moments of 2019? What TV shows are you looking forward to in 2020? Let me know in the comments!