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The fruits of all that binge-watching

The Handmaid's Tale

“The show – like Atwood’s book – is a fictional representation of a future that has existed in the past, or exists in parts today, if you know where to look. It argues for us to be eternally vigilant, and by way of Offred’s tale, it shows us why that’s so important.”

Rick and BoJack

“Both like to deal with our place in the universe, and their shared love of subversive and upending tropes tends to leave the characters in psychological distress (rather than moments of shared joy) more often than not.”

Twin Peaks: The Return

“Yet for all its flaws, it’s great that Lynch isn’t simply interested in revisiting the glory days of Twin Peaks. A lesser showrunner would have given us more of what audiences loved from the show’s first season, the perfect nostalgia throwback to the past. Instead, Lynch is serving a continuation of the story 25 years later, while still being its own wacky thing.”

Black Mirror: Season 4

“The fourth season of Brooker’s show – which adds six more stories to the existing canon of thirteen – revisits some familiar themes in a new approach, while expanding the topics it tackles in frightening new ways. And when everything clicks in place, Black Mirror is still one of the smartest shows around, giving us a prescient look at our inevitable future if we act before we think.”

Star Trek: Discovery

“Essentially, Discovery has used war and violence the way HBO shows use nudity, to draw audiences in, and will then pivot into the kind of show it wants to be. It’s why Game of Thrones cares a lot less about asking its actors to undress now, because it already has our attention.”

Stranger Things: Season 2

“By allowing the kids gang to branch into their own sub-plots and inter-linking that to explore their evolving friendship, creating a bigger universe of monsters that provides action-packed thrills, and honing the art of the unexpected while knowing when to upend existing tropes, Stranger Things season 2 is a more refined version of itself in the new season.”

Marvel's The Punisher

The Punisher is far from a publicity grab on the growing popularity of Marvel superheroes, and pushes the notion of what we’ve come to expect from the Netflix vigilante dramas. Thanks to Castle’s propensity for gunfire and Micro’s use of technology, the new series can deliver action sequences that will feel fresh to Marvel fans, and contributes into making a show that truly understands the character, warts and all.”

Marvel's The Defenders

The Defenders tries so hard to drive up the stakes, but since ultimately everyone who has their own solo series must come out of it unscathed, there are no real stakes. Despite the ubiquity of superheroes today, there are not enough stories that are willing to send their heroes to the darkest of ends, after they’ve been put through the wringer.”

Marvel's Runaways

Runaways doesn’t just follow the kids’ adventures, but also places a heavy focus on the adults, making for a total cast of 16. The show is centred on both generations – a staple of Schwartz and Savage’s, who are masters of weaving older characters into teen shows – giving them equal screen time in early episodes. And oh, did we tell you there’s a dinosaur in the mix?”

Blue Planet II

“Sixteen years later, and four years in the making, Blue Planet II – the sequel with a wiser and older Sir David Attenborough in the same role – has arrived, promising us a better view thanks to improvements to technology.”

The Tick

“For some audiences, that might feel a tad too heavy, especially in what originated as a superhero parody. This Amazon version of The Tick does feel it’s like attempting a balancing act, of playing out as an action-packed superhero comedy, as well as create a more sombre tone by exploring the emotions under the surface.”

Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Return

“Funnily enough, thanks to Netflix, MST3K does live right on my phone now. And just like that, the show’s return – after an incredible gap of 18 years – is proof that even the wildest dreams can come true for fans thanks to our new golden age of television. Finally, we’ve got movie sign again.”

The Grand Tour

“It’s their genuine passion for motoring, mocking known and oft-repeated idiosyncrasies, revelling in their own stereotypes, and engaging in silly banter amongst themselves that made a car show involving three old blokes such fun to watch for over a decade. And so when The Grand Tour gets down to business, it feels a lot like the old Top Gear. “


Marvel's Luke Cage

“With Luke Cage at its centre – a man with unbreakable skin and near invincibility in combat – Coker gets time to explore the other variables that affect him and the community at large: a potent mix of prejudice, societal conditions, hierarchy, and police neglect. While Cage grapples with his new-found hero status post an event or two, the consequences of his personal agenda against Cottonmouth sends ripples for everyone living in Harlem.”

Game of Thrones: Season 7

“[The] books are called A Song of Ice and Fire for a reason. Jon is the son of Lyanna Stark (Ice) and Rhaegar Targaryen (Fire), which literally makes him the title of the series; the show’s name – Game of Thrones – comes from the title of the first book. He can bring Westeros together in a way no ruler can.”

Silicon Valley: Season 4

“Of course, it helps that the people out in the real world contribute so easily to satire – so much of what happens in the Bay Area seems stranger than fiction – and the show’s writers extensively research what goes into the episodes, including sitting down with the heads of the tech giants.”

American Gods

“Those moments and asides have given us the season’s best moments – an empowering gay scene involving an Omani native, and commentary on vigilante gun violence and Mexican immigrants among others – which have hopefully shone through despite American Gods’ emphasis on experience over narrative. Now, we pray and wait for season two.”

The Expanse: Season 2

“The show’s events, based on a series of books written by James S A Corey – a joint pen name for writers Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck – take place over two hundred years from our time, mostly across three different societies living millions of miles away from each other. But the show is still strikingly relevant, and even prescient in other matters.”

Amazon India: Stand-up comedy specials

“If Amazon is truly interested in being more inclusive, it may well need to look beyond its current partnership. […] “If their logic is ‘there isn’t anybody good enough’, then you know there’s a problem,” says Mittal. Vaz thinks the men in the industry need to be much more vocal about the issues, and even more conscious when they’re setting up a show.”

Netflix behind-the-scenes

“When it comes to content recommendation, Netflix looks at your likes from the time you signed up, the titles you bother to rate, and much more importantly – what you watch, and how much you watch it. Shifting from a five-star rating system to a binary option – thumbs up or thumbs down – is again part of that, as Yellin believes what you say with thumbs is a lot more relevant than what you say with stars.”

Best TV shows of 2016

“2016 was another brilliant year for television series, and with the end of the year upon us, we’ve decided to put together a list of the best shows that aired in the past 12 months. At Gadgets 360, our entertainment focus is around things that inspire intense fan conversation, and drive conversation in pop culture – stuff that wouldn’t be out of place at Comic Con.”