Monday, January 06, 2014

Favorite Television Shows 2004-2014

All right.  This is sick.

I am going to talk about shows that I have really liked in the past ten years.
Some shows do not go the distance. I loved them and then I didn't anymore.

But some shows were only shown once but I recorded them and have watched them more than five times.

I will put (K) for keeper, (OL) for lost interest but once loved, (E) embarrassed to admit,  (GTS) gone too soon, (L) for love so much it has become a part of my psyche.  Those in italics really stand out!

Drama

Downton Abbey (L, K)
Call the Midwives ( L, K)
Breaking Bad (L, K)
Weeds (L, E)
Lost(OL)
Grey's Anatomy (OL)
Desperate Housewives (L)
Ugly Betty (L)
Pushing Daises (L)
Persuasion (2007) (K, L)
Jane Eyre (2006) (L,K)
Cranford (L, K)
The Paradise (L)

tumblr_lxeoyj8VCD1qbojpxo1_500

Persuasion-2007-persuasion-5250695-1024-576

Breaking-bad-walter-jesse


I never would have thought I would like Breaking Bad.   In fact I only started watching it last summer as the finale approached.  It sounded so dark and awful.  (I would get mad when Bryan and Aaron would win Emmy's because I didn't watch the show.)  But it is by far the best drama I have ever watched on television.  The acting is extraordinary. (I think Aaron Paul is the best actor on the planet.) The story telling spell binding. I don't know if it is for you.  I just know it blew my mind.


Reality TV.

Dancing with the Stars
So You Think You Can Dance
Survivor
Amazing Race (OL)
Project Runway (OL)
America's Next Top Model (OL)
American Idol
Housewives (OL)

Sitcoms

Cougar Town (L, K)
30 Rock (L)
Go On (GTS)
Friends (L)
Sex and the City (L, K, E)

cougar_town_ver3

carrie




Yes.  I love Sex and the City.  I adore the girls.  I adore most of their stories.  When you watch the show on television it goes from being R rated to being PG 13.  I can't deny it.  I love it.  I say love, not loved, because as we say around our house, Sex and the City is my Law and Order.  (My husband would put one show on his list....and that would be Law and Order....the Lenny years.  He watches it over and over and over.  Any time it is on, which is always, he will choose to watch it. )


So those are my faves from the last decade.  Seems I have a split personality.


******

What did you think of Downton Abbey last night?  I liked it very well.

Opinions welcome in the comments.  You all remember things better than I do!


Encourage one another,
Donna

p.s.  don't judge  :oP



71 comments:

  1. I am here, vegging with my laptop and watching "Feed the Fish" - yay Wisconsin!

    love your lists. I have to say, I've mainly watched Sex & the City (during visits home) on TV so it's the cleaned up version. These gals just draw you in, don't they?


    Speaking of being drawn in: I love Downton Abbey, Season 4 - the first two episodes (that aired together last night in the States) are a bit slower but I love how we get to catch up with the characters. LOVE the interchange between Mary & Violet, and both with Mary & Carson (even the first, which was kinda sad. It seems she lets more of her feelings out with Carson than her own parents). I thought Isobel and Mary's grief seemed very real. And fitting.

    As for your other shows on the list: LOVE Call the Midwife, it's a keeper for sure. I'm trying out The Paradise, and downloaded the first episode to my Kindle. it looks good!

    I've never seen Breaking Bad. Waiting for it to come here, hopefully, to be shown (in reruns) on the French channel. It's right up their alley I'm thinking.

    finally: gotta love Lenny on Law and Order.

    hugs from Your Swiss Miss

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You will love Call the Midwife. The music is perfection. Think of my momma when you look at Jenny. The first year is set in 1957. A good year.

      Delete
  2. No judgement here. I, sadly, love the Bachelor (and Honey Boo Boo) and if you knew me, it would be so out of character! And yesterday - the Bachelor was on from 8 - 9 and Downton Abbey was on from 9 -11 and I was just in TV heaven!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Gina,
      I have a love hate relationship with the Bachelor. I used to like it and watched them all...and now I am over it. Honey Boo Boo and the Duck Dynasty never caught my attention. Perhaps if they wore period costumes or made meth.

      Delete
  3. Downton Abbey -love it. One review really criticized Mary and her grief, but I thought it made sense. Still was glad that family was trying to bring her out of it. Lord Grantham is still stuck in the old ways. I cringed when he was so enthusiastic to take back running the Estate since he has clearly run it into the ground at least twice. Still, I could understand. I am retiring in 2 months and while there are a lot of reasons, this one can exemplify why I can relate to Robert. We have had many technological changes and a month ago young techies arrived in my office to remove my desk phone and give me a headset for my computer, AN NOT leave an instruction manual. And they laughed at how simple my desk phone is.

    Re Project Runway. I tape the show, then watch the description of the challenge, then fast forward to the runway show. I found this much more enjoyable by leaving out all the drama (or most of it).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is an excellent way to watch Project Runway. But you know what....every year I am unhappy with who they chose to win. 90% of the time.

      You know...only an unwise person would tell someone they are grieving wrongly. She needed a gentle push and she got it. It was beautifully written.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous1:29 PM

      Sally, I feel your pain regarding new technology. I work in a medical office and we will soon be moving to electronic medical records from paper charts. I understand the advantages, hookup to the hospital etc., but there is also a downside with less personal medicine and room for error or files that don't come through. My family teases me because a side of me would be very happy to be getting up into my horse and buggy, adjusting my bustle and pulling up my kid gloves. : )

      Debbie Z.

      Delete
  4. We named our son after Aiden in Sex in the City and he's now old enough to come home from school with the homework question, "what does my name mean and why did my parents choose it". oy. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOVE this. I wonder how many Chandlers there are, out there? ;-)

      Delete
  5. I started watching Breaking Bad to see what all the hype was and about 3 episodes in, I didn't think I'd be able to do it. I'd never seen anything so dark and disturbing in my life. But the writing and acting kept me going. My sister watched as well and seemed to keep a few episodes ahead of me and after almost every episode I would call her and say, "It can't get any worse can it?" She would always reply, "oh yes, it gets worse". I caught up in time to watch the last episodes in real time and I totally agree that it is the best drama that has ever been. I haven't seen Downtown Abbey but also love Call the Midwives and many of your other favorites! Nice list!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Oh Downton....My stomach was in knots in the moments leading up to watching it. It's taken me the whole break between seasons to recover from Matthew dying. Matthew and Mary were my favorite couple. I felt so much sadness for Mary, was so irritated with Lord Grantham, and hopeful for Edith (although I see some bad decisions in her future if she isn't careful), in last nights episode.

    We are in Middle of watching Breaking Bad Season 5, and are completely addicted. SITC and Weeds are also Guilty Pleasures of mine.

    I fell like our DVR's almost match..LOL

    ReplyDelete
  7. Wow. I had a hard time going to sleep last night after Downton. I woke up and had to write down my thoughts. They are here: http://alivingpencil.com/2014/01/06/light-shadows-and-downton-abbey/

    I was fascinated—spellbound—by the lighting in the first hour. So dark and brooding. When Mary cries in Carson's arms, I think I was patting her back too.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Anonymous1:17 PM

    Tell your husband he is not alone in loving Law & Order - the Lenny Years. Jerry Orbach was simply the best with the one liners. I miss him.

    I too love Sex & the City although I have only seen it on TV with the edited versions. I've never watched Breaking Bad, but think I would like it for some reason if I ever did.

    For Downton, I felt so sorry for Lady Mary last night. I was glad to see she was coming back to the "living" before it was over. Lady Edith and her clothes! I thought she looked great, but so headed for heartache - again. That spiteful new maid for Lady Grantham will certainly cause problems for Anna and Mr. Bates. Of course my favorite remains "Granny" Grantham!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I HATE that that maid is back!

      Delete
    2. Lady Edith definitely shone in all those beautiful costumes!! Headed for heartache for sure! And that maid is going to be nothing but trouble.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous1:44 PM

      Edna and Thomas are going to be a mean spirited duo. I guess there needs to be an evil partner for him since Mrs. O'Brian left. I knew she was leaving (only spoiler to which I paid attention). It's unfortunate that someone couldn't have ran over her with a tractor! (Just kidding, well, kinda)!

      Delete
    4. Edna - Pfft! Boy is she trouble.

      Delete
  9. OK, Downton last night was wonderful. One of my favorite parts, though, was what Bates did for Molesly!! Carson and Mary have such a beautiful relationship. And the Dowager? Still awesome!!!

    One show that is on my list (although many would be similar to yours) that I didn't see on your list would be Lark Rise to Candleford. Another BBC spectacular! The man who plays Bates on Downton is in it, and so is one of the younger sisters from the Colin-Firth-as-Mr. Darcy version of Pride and Prejudice. It would be an LK for me. :-) I highly recommend it!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Beth...of course I LOVE Pride and Prejudice with Colin Firth...but this was from the 90's. I was trying to stick to the shows from the ten years I have been blogging. I have however watched it numerous times in this decade. No other Dr. Darcy for me.

      Delete
    2. Oh, no! Lark Rise to Candleford is the show I was talking about. Have you seen that one? (Btw, that is the ONLY Pride and Prejudice that should be allowed for viewing IMHO.)

      Delete
    3. I don't mind the Kiera Knightley P & P if I need a quick fix and can't make the time investment of the miniseries... The soundtrack is particularly sweet.... And Lark Rise is a great series. Watched the whole thing over the course of several months of laundry folding! :)

      Delete
    4. I love the soundtrack for the Kiera K. version of P & P - I have it downloaded to my Kindle, in case I need some soothing backdrop music while traveling. It's lovely. Nothing beats Colin F. in the long P & P miniseries!

      Delete
    5. Colin Firth in ANYTHING.... period.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous11:17 AM

      Colin Firth is The Huge. LOVE him. It's one of the reasons Love Actually is on my hit list. :)

      Mary Z

      Delete
  10. Anonymous1:43 PM

    I loved Downton last night! So many touching scenes, but one of my favorites was when Mosely was outside looking at the sky and feeling oh so blue and his father came out and talked with him. Beautiful. Carson comforting Mary was also very touching.

    A TV show I would put as L, K is Gilmore Girls. I truly adored that show and could recite most lines (though not as quickly as the characters do!). Even though the last few years weren't as strong, I was still so very sad when it ended. Thank goodness for the DVDs! Years ago I also liked thirtysomething. It doesn't hold up as well the few times I've seen it in reruns, but since it aired the first year I was a mother and newly turned 30, I really related to it. I disagree with your "This is sick" comment. I love hearing what others enjoy watching!

    Mary Z

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous1:47 PM

      Also meant to add that Greg is a huge Law & Order fan, too, and that Lenny is his fave. He is constantly saying "He gets all the good lines!" Remember Jerry Orbach as Lumiere in Beauty & the Beast? What a talented guy. GTS.

      Mary Z

      Delete
    2. I have never watched Gilmore Girls. Perhaps in the dead of winter...I will start.
      Carson and Mary. Mrs. Hughes being a sweet meddler. Those were my faves from last night.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous3:40 PM

      Jerry as Lumiere….Yes, yes!! He had a long Broadway career along with TV and movies. Love his voice. jep

      Delete
    4. Donna, Gilmore Girls takes a season to latch onto. By 2nd Season they are on a wonderful roll. The characters are the best. Plus there is lots of coffee :-)

      Delete
    5. Lauren Graham is the main reason I love parenthood... though I've never seen even one episode of GG. I think I should.

      Delete
    6. I totes agree :-)

      Delete
    7. Anonymous6:03 PM

      I just started watching season 1 of Parenthood because I love Lauren Graham so much! Sadly, it has just never fit in my schedule before now. I thought this group would appreciate seeing what Lauren tweeted this morning:
      "But what would Lady Mary do in this situation?
      -Me, in all my scenes yesterday
      #Downton
      #Dork"

      Mary Z

      Delete
    8. Just checkin in here - oh Mary that is GOLDEN. I LOVE Lauren Graham!!

      I confess I have not seen Parenthood because it's not shown here in English. sheesh, I got some catchin up to do. I saw Season One on sale at the English bookstore and the price was a wee bit steep, but I think I'm gonna march myself down there and pick it up. Not sure I want to wait til my next visit to the States :-)

      Delete
  11. Mary, those were some of my favorite moments of Downton, too. And I LOVE GG!!! I own all the seasons and often watch them while ironing!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Anonymous1:57 PM

    My husband and I are with Patrick on this one. Law and Order the Lenny years are in our queue permanently. Jerry Orbach was a great song and dance man, too.

    We enjoy mysteries of all kinds, cop and military shows. Must have been all those WWII movies with John Wayne, Jimmy Stewart and Glenn ford etc. we watched with our parents when we were growing up. Our guilty TV series is Justified…the acting is really good, meth is involved and Timothy Olyphant is a handsome man. I will admit that I don't watch the bloody parts on any show. My husband does this wonderful thing where he says, "Don't look now, OK, you can look." We do enjoy Downton. Good list Donna and what fun to see what other watch.
    love and prayers, jep

    ReplyDelete
  13. I was a little surprised that Thomas would pin something on Anna and risk Bates' wrath. The two of them have gone toe-to-toe before and Bates was all over Thomas! (And since Bates has been to prison, I'd think Thomas would be even more careful around him!)

    Also, Nanny West. Ugh- I literally gasped when she spoke so awfully to poor baby Sybil. She was awful! I was glad to see Cora stand up to her so forcefully!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Anonymous3:07 PM

    I used to live and breath for Grey's Anatomy, but somewhere along the line I lost interest and I haven't watched it for a long time.
    I fell head over heels for Call the Midwives. I picked up the box set of Season 1 and 2 during Christmas shopping. I haven't seen Season 2. Can't wait!! I watched the first season on Netflix on my ipad with headphones on in my bed at night. For Pete's sake.
    Friends = Forever and ever.
    Oh, but of course we watch Duck Dynasty. We can't help but like Uncle Si.
    My sisters watch Honey Boo Boo. They don't get angry or whatever....they think its hilarious. They also talk about Modern Family, too.
    Confession: I have never watched one episode of Sex and the City, Downton Abbey, or Gilmore Girls. I feel like I'm failing! It's not because I don't want to....it's because I have no control of the t.v. in my house. Someday......someday....

    Sarah P. from Iowa : )

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I just started watching Downton Abbey this year. I got the old seasons on netflix and caught up :)

      Delete
  15. Have you tried the mindy project? Loved this show-also happy endings-both the same dynamic as cougar town and funny in their own ways.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes! I do like the Mindy Project. I have read her book too. Funny girl.

      Delete
    2. I'm just getting into Mindy and I think she's a riot. Good one!

      Delete
  16. Cyndi K G3:43 PM

    I have been watching and loving almost everything Masterpiece Theatre for more than thirty years!

    On Downton I hated the fact that Matthew died, but I thought they did a great job last night of establishing the story without him. I have one question tho: who was Edna? I can't recall which season she was in and what she did!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think Edna was only in the Christmas special from season 3. She went after Tom Branson & kissed him. Mrs Hughes dismissed her when she found out that Edna was pursuing a relationship with Tom.

      Delete
    2. You are right Jesdica. I would not have remembered the episode but she was after Tom!!

      Delete
    3. Anonymous4:44 PM

      Masterpiece Theatre…Brilliant, we watch it, too.
      jep

      Delete
    4. {{{LIKE}}} Masterpiece Theatre!!

      Delete
  17. I think I've only heard of or watched half of these shows.
    Never heard of: Call the Midwives, Persuasion, Jane Eyre, Cranford, The Paradise
    Never seen: Sex and the City, Breaking Bad, Weeds, Ugly Betty, So You Think You Can Dance, Project Runway, America's Next Top Model, American Idol, Housewives, Cougar Town, 30 Rock, Go On
    Used to Like: Survivor, Grey's Anatomy, Friends
    LOVE: Downton Abbey, Desperate Housewives, Lost (the ending sucked rotten eggs!), DWTS, Amazing Race, Pushing Daisies - I LOVED THAT SHOW! I get so frustrated when there are good shows that I am really getting into, and then they cancel them. Like No Ordinary Family, V, and lots of others. I Love Downton Abbey so much, I watched the entire new season on a British website this past weekend ;) Another DA addict friend sent me the link, LOL

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your "never heard of" list is all British bbc fabulousness. Mostly streaming on amazon. Cranford is a REAL gem - don't miss it!

      I also liked "lark rise" - it was my laundry folding series for a good long time!!

      Delete
    2. This might be a good time to insert one of my British finds, that I watch while folding and ironing: Rosemary & Thyme. LOVE this show about two middle age ladies having a landscaping business and in true Jessica Fletcher style, solving crimes. Folks drop dead all around them (ha!) Sister Evangeline is Laura Thyme. Love her.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous5:04 PM

      We have seen every episode of Rosemary and Thyme that Netflix has and would love to see the rest of the shows. Love those gals!! jep

      Delete
    4. jep, we are kindred spirits I feel sure of it

      Delete
    5. I should add, I have all 3 seasons - Amazon had a special and I got them for like 40% off. I love watching them again and again because of the beautiful settings and I love these characters! even their vehicle :-) xxx

      Delete
  18. I've heard so much about so many of those shows, but this season of my life apparently doesn't involve having any "shows", and I guess I'm okay with that. My precious ones are 7, 5, 3, and almost 1, so once I get everybody in bed at night, my would-be-TV-time is crafting or pinterest/ blog-reading-time. I feel like such a dork though. My 84 year old grandmother called me this morning to tell me how much she enjoyed watching Downton Abbey last night. Haha, even my grandmother watches it and I don't even have a clue what it's about. If I could pick one to watch, I'd choose Call the Midwife, although I don't even know what channel or what time or what day it comes on. I'm fascinated by midwives.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amber, the only show I watch when it airs is Downton - everything else I watch online at my convenience. I have four kids too, and having a 'show' at a specific time is nearly impossible. It's only now that we're out of diapers that I can make the Sunday night commitment. :)

      Delete
  19. I love Cougar Town...love it! I am also a big fan of Raising Hope. ER was one of my faves, though I just never could watch them all. And I recall saying, "Who would ever watch a show called Desperate Housewives?" and then loving it early on, but with a baby and husband who made me miserable when watching in his presence, alas, I gave it up! My all time best is Will and Grace, which should have been called Jack and Karen, because no one has ever been funnier, IMO! I have been watching the Young and the Restless off and on for almost 20 years, and I never talk about it to anyone! :) Love your list.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Andrea, I'm sipping coffee and reading everybody's comments this morning. I LOVE Jack and Karen! Someone loaned me the first 3 seasons of Will & Grace when I first moved to Zurich and I forgot how funny these folks are!!! It made me laugh when I was a bit glum about being far from friends and family :-)

      Also I must add that two shows that are broadcast here in original English FAITHFULLY each day are the Young and the Restless and Bold and the Beautiful. They have fans EVERYWHERE. You are in good company :-)

      Delete
  20. And also...Parks and Recreation is in my top 3 right now!

    ReplyDelete
  21. It makes me so happy that you love Breaking Bad. My husband just spent the last few months watching the whole series start to finish. At the end of every episode we'd just look at each other and ask what the heck just happened? How could they possibly follow this?
    They are spectacular stories and the writers, oh my. Whoever thought I would love meth cooks so much?! All of it was just perfection. Horrible, awful, sometimes sweet perfection.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Off the cuff favorites of my whole life: West Wing, Friday Night Lights, (both of which I binge watched on Netflix, but they are just spectacular shows..) ; Little House on the Prairie - can't pass it by if I catch it on tv; Friends, which I at first avoided while in college, but eventually fell in love with the sense of community and family.. 30 Rock, Downton, Cranford, and an old fabulous NBC crime show called 'The Profiler". I have the whole series on DVD and it is FABULOUS.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Call the Midwife is rapidly making its way onto this list, too...

      Delete
    2. I heart Call the Midwife

      Delete
  23. Watching Persuasion with Rupert right now - because I am easily persuaded ;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous11:20 AM

      (((Like)))

      Mary Z

      Delete
    2. "Nothing, you can be sure, will ever persuade me otherwise."

      I watched the last 1/2 hour last night. Thank you Jane Austen.

      Delete
    3. I had quite a few interruptions, and pauses - finally finished about 30 minutes ago. ~sigh~ love the ending ! It gets me every time.

      Delete
  24. I love this post! I would never judge television choices...I'm tempted to tell you what I just spent DAYS gorging myself on, lol. (I'm always afraid some gentle soul will watch something I talk about and be shocked). Sometimes dark is touching.

    I love Gilmore Girls; one of the best compliments my oldest daughter ever gave me was telling me that Lorelai and Rory reminded her of the two of us. <3 Justified is another one of my faves. In fact, amazon just put up season 4...so that's what I'm off to watch!

    ReplyDelete
  25. gilmore girls
    weeds
    everwood
    alias
    mad about you
    designing women
    will and grace
    big love-but i haven't watched it over and over but i own every season
    six feet under -same as big love
    i love lucy
    american dreams-i never saw the finale and the last season has never been released on dvd.
    grey's anatomy- i stuck it through the rough season

    ReplyDelete
  26. sex and the city also---especially seasons 4 and 5

    ReplyDelete

Hello. So nice to see you. Would you like to leave a comment? Be very kind.