The Best TV Shows of 2016 (So Far)

The Best Albums of 2016 (So Far)
Bey, Rih, Drake, and much more!

2016 is halfway over, if you can believe it. How quickly time flies!

All this week, we’ll be sharing our 2016 (so far) favorites: songs, albums, movies, TV shows, and stories. Today: TV shows! I asked all of Celebuzz’s editors to send me their three favorite TV shows of 2016. Many of us enjoyed The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, Game of Thrones, Broad City, and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. But there are also shoutouts for shows like The Americans, Veep, Orange is the New Black, and much more. Read on to see what everyone chose.

Matt Russoniello

The Americans

The Americans, which aired its fourth season this year, not only continues to be the best drama on TV, it continues to accomplish the rare feat of getting better with each season. Season Four upped the stakes once again — bigger decisions, bigger deaths, bigger dread — but did so in its signature subtle ways, balancing its slow-burn plot with moments of devastating, empathetic moments of character development.

Broad City

Though Season Three was a little more hit-or-miss for me than the previous two, there is just no denying the comedic power of Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer. No show makes me laugh harder than Broad City makes me laugh, even when its ever-so-slightly off its A-Game. (That said, episodes like “Co-Op,” “B&B-NYC,” and “Getting There” were absolutely stellar.)

The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

I went in to this “miniseries” expecting a campy, frothy guilty pleasure about events that occurred when I was just old enough to know they were a thing but not old enough to really understand what was happening. In some ways, I got just that. But O.J. proved to be much more than mindless entertainment. The stellar cast — enough cannot be said about Sarah Paulson as Marcia Clark especially — and willingness to address complicated issues of race, sex, gender, and power helped turned what could have been an exploitative ratings-grab into a thoughtful, compelling drama.

Kaitlyn Laurie

UnReal

Having just got back into The Bachelorette this season with Jojo and, above all, Chad, I was super excited to start season 1 of UnReal and wow, did it exceed my expectations. The producers working behind the scenes on reality shows are, in fact, as effed up and ruthless and fascinating as you might think. And if you’ve never thought about the producers behind reality TV shows at all, well, then it will blow your mind. The show is super smart, riveting, female-driven and rather unlike anything else I’ve watched before.

Veep

Veep is one of those shows that I can watch over and over, and still laugh out loud as if I were hearing the jokes with fresh ears. This most recent season was just as cringeworthy, with Selena hoping to make history by becoming the first (elected) female President. And you really want her to succeed, despite how much of an egomaniac she is.

The Girlfriend Experience

First off, is Riley Keough the most beautiful person on the planet? Yes. In The Girlfriend Experience, she plays an incredibly smart law student who’s also incredibly detached and mysterious (of course, given her secret life as a high-end call girl). It’s crazy-disturbing at points, and for a show about sex and power, it treats sex very frankly. TGE is one of the best shows I’ve ever watched, at once a legal drama and in many ways a psychological thriller.

Mia Lardiere

Broad City

I caught up on all previous seasons of Broad City over the span of three weekends. At the end of this binge-watching session, I wanted to 1) Learn how to twerk like Ilana, 2) Bask in an Arm-Waving Tube Man with Hillary Clinton, and 3) Convert to Judaism with Seth Green as my rabbi.

Inside Amy Schumer

Amy Schumer continues to prove her deservedness of a Peabody Award. Her sketches enforce urgency for discussion on issues including gun violence and the carrying of a tampon in the workplace without sacrificing the universal language of humor.

Chelsea

Chelsea Handler caught me in her Netflix web with her docuseries, Chelsea Does, as I enjoyed watching her push the boundaries of her perceived persona as a loud-mouthed woman with a talk show who likes to be naked often. Chelsea does the same, except it rethinks the capabilities of talk TV on modern streaming platforms. It’s still getting its bearings, but this model certainly has huge potential for Neflix across the many genres that daytime and late-night encompasses.

Jelani Addams Rosa

Orange Is the New Black

The fourth season of OITNB is by far the most polarizing season to date. While some fans are praising Jenji Kohan and company for including storylines similar to real life tragedies the likes of Eric Garner, Sandra Bland and Michael Brown, others are fed up with yet another show that seems to want the viewers to sympathize with white men in power. But regardless of how you feel about the show, the performances by Samira Wiley, Daniella Brooks and Uzo Aduba are not to be missed.

Pretty Little Liars

After every single Pretty Little Liars season finale, I say I’m never going to watch the show again and yet every season premiere, there I am trying to figure out who the hell A is. As the series embarks on its rumored last season, I’m looking forward to finally getting the answers we’ve deserved since the season Mona was A.

The Mindy Project

The Mindy Project is my go to feel good show and after the devastation of OITNB Season Four, it was absolutely necessary. I love how Mindy can somehow have it all and simultaneously be completely falling apart. The show has only gotten better since it made the transition from FOX to Hulu, but please, please, please Mindy, drop Danny for good; you’re better than that.

Gabi Chung

Game of Thrones

Now that the TV show has surpassed the events covered in the books, watching Game of Thrones feels like a whole new ball game. It’s enthralling to see fan theories (finally!) confirmed and watch those character arcs. Besides, the HBO series is more thrilling than ever now that none of your smarmy book-reading friends can say, “Oh, I knew that was going to happen because it was in the novel,” and ruin it for you.

Last Week Tonight With John Oliver

John Oliver is absolutely killing it this season. Between his “Make Donald Drumpf Again” campaign and forgiving nearly $15 million in medical debt, the comedian flawlessly uses humor to bring real issues in the world to light and, in turn, help create change. It’s news that you can easily digest and do something about. Your move, millennials.

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Like 30 Rock, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt gets better with every season. The latest season is wittier, snappier, much quicker, and quirkier with its jokes and one-liners. Besides, Tina Fey as a drunk therapist? Yes please!

Scott Baumgartner

Game of Thrones

Every season, it seems as though the stakes are raised on this HBO show and every season they impress and amaze. The numerous characters are gearing up for the final conclusion of this epic story and just the thought of it ending is tough to consider.

The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

Ryan Murphy is known for his rapid-fire scripts and his over-the-top delivery, but somehow it works with this historic trial. But to be fair, this is a murder case with so many twists and turns, the story was just begging for a show.

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

You’d think Tina Fey would have exhausted every New York joke in 30 Rock, but her Netflix show is packed with brilliant observations and biting humor about gentrification, relationships and self-discovery. It’s silly and ridiculous and made for binging.

Michael Prieve

American Crime

I didn’t think that American Crime could improve on season one, but it did. This season delved deeply into sexual assault, race issues, gun violence and class issues. With standout performances from Felicty Huffman, Regina King, Lily Taylor and Connor Jessup giving in an Emmy-winning turn, you’ll want to watch this show OnDemand for its near-impeccable storytelling and direction.

The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

This season depicted the murder trial of O. J. Simpson. We already knew the verdict, but that did not prevent this from being a fascinating series. The writers, cast and directors dug into the characters and circumstances in ways that made the narrative come alive in powerful ways. Plus, there were some amazing performances from Sarah Paulson, Sterling K. Brown and Courtney B. Vance. If Paulson doesn’t win an Emmy for her portrayal of Marcia Clark, I will be shocked.

O.J. Simpson: Made in America

While I thought I may have gotten burned out on O.J. Simpson television, O.J. Simpson: Made in America proved that to be wrong. The fascinating 5 part documentary revisits the rise and fall of Simpson, from his days growing up in Los Angeles to his murder trial that polarized the country. There are some fascinating interviews shown in the documentary, and it also depicts O.J.’s late wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, in probably the most human and thoughtful way, which is something that we really have never seen before.