favorite single season of television

edited July 10 in Other TV
This is a question that I recently was asked by a friend and I had to think about it quite a bit.  Breaking Bad definitely had a few amazing seasons but my runner ups were season 2 and 3 of Game of Thrones with the winner being season 2 of The Leftovers.  

NOTE: I have yet to watch The Wire.  As soon as I finish up Black Sails my plan is to watch The Wire which is highly decorated as having been some of the best television out there.  
Travis
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Comments

  • I always thought the first season of OZ was my personal all time favorite. 

    A good runner up would be 2nd season of Sons of Anarchy or pretty much any season of Breaking bad lol. 
    TravisMattyWeaves
  • ChinaskiChinaski Santa Cruz, CA
    if I had to pick just one off the top of my head.. The Wire - S3.
    letrbuck2006TravisCretanBullA_Ron_HubbardBrett68Freddyrkcrawf
  • Justified season 2
    Doctor_NickTravisA_Ron_HubbardJovial_Falcon
  • MichelleMichelle California
    This is a tough question to answer!  I can't pick just one, so I'll just say that these all tie for first:

    Friends season 5
    Lost season 3
    Mad Men season 3
    This is Us season 1
    Penny Dreadful season 1

    TravisMattyWeavesElisanstinson
  • Trying to keep to the rules (one season only). I might have to say The Wire Season 4 Soul Crushingly good. 
    TravisA_Ron_Hubbardnstinsonrkcrawf
  • Garthgou81Garthgou81 Placerville, CA
    Its hard for me to boil it down to just one season, but True Detective Season 1 springs to mind, Breaking Bad Season 4, The Sopranos Season 5 is also way up there for me, The Wire Season 4 too. My favorite season probably changes day-to-day. 
    Travis
  • Doctor_NickDoctor_Nick Terminus
    I’d probably go with Breaking Bad Season 4. 
    gguenotTravisrkcrawf
  • Breaking Bad S4 or GoT S4
    Travis
  • Season 2 of The Leftovers edges out Season 3 of Babylon 5 for me because I didn't expect what we ended up getting after they finished following the book in Season 1. If mini series counted Band of Brothers would beat both.
    TravisA_Ron_Hubbardnstinsonrkcrawf
  • JaimieTJaimieT Atlanta, GA
    Mad Men season 4.
    TravisMichellerkcrawf
  • I have two answers, but this is for a reason. There is the best season of television that I've ever watched in the first go around, and my favorite season of television with a mind to re-watchability. I've never been as impressed by a season than I was with season 2 of the Leftovers, but I've re-watched season 3 of Parks and Recreation literally about 15 times and it never gets old, which I think is very significant. I think the answer should be split for each's different function.
    ChinaskiMattyWeaves
  • edited July 10
    Travis said:
    I have two answers, but this is for a reason. There is the best season of television that I've ever watched in the first go around, and my favorite season of television with a mind to re-watchability. I've never been as impressed by a season than I was with season 2 of the Leftovers, but I've re-watched season 3 of Parks and Recreation literally about 15 times and it never gets old, which I think is very significant. I think the answer should be split for each's different function.
    That is perfectly valid in my opinion.  I don't know that I could say I've really rewatched a season/series like that before.  I definitely rewatch some different shows before the new season airs but that's clearly different.  I do feel it is much more logical with a comedy show versus a drama/serious show.
    TravisChinaski
  • TravisTravis CA
    edited July 10
    Travis said:
    I have two answers, but this is for a reason. There is the best season of television that I've ever watched in the first go around, and my favorite season of television with a mind to re-watchability. I've never been as impressed by a season than I was with season 2 of the Leftovers, but I've re-watched season 3 of Parks and Recreation literally about 15 times and it never gets old, which I think is very significant. I think the answer should be split for each's different function.
    That is perfectly valid in my opinion.  I don't know that I could say I've really rewatched a season/series like that before.  I definitely rewatch some different shows before the new season airs but that's clearly different.  I do feel it is much more logical with a comedy show versus a drama/serious show.
    That's very true in my life at least (regarding re-watchability of comedies vs. dramas, etc). For instance, I tried re-watching Breaking Bad a little ways back and as fantastic as that show is I just couldn't get up for it. I'm wondering if enough time has gone by now to make it work, but the payoff is so much in that first run that it's just not the same. Comedies on the other hand will still make me laugh and kind of bask in the levity of it all. I think that I can recapture the "warm blanket feeling," but not so much the energy required to immerse so deeply into a drama. The different show types just ask different things from you.
  • For me Fargo Season 2.  Haven't watched a few of these shows that are making everyone's top list.  
    DeeElisaCretanBullBrett68WonderedObject
  • Travis said:
    Travis said:
    I have two answers, but this is for a reason. There is the best season of television that I've ever watched in the first go around, and my favorite season of television with a mind to re-watchability. I've never been as impressed by a season than I was with season 2 of the Leftovers, but I've re-watched season 3 of Parks and Recreation literally about 15 times and it never gets old, which I think is very significant. I think the answer should be split for each's different function.
    That is perfectly valid in my opinion.  I don't know that I could say I've really rewatched a season/series like that before.  I definitely rewatch some different shows before the new season airs but that's clearly different.  I do feel it is much more logical with a comedy show versus a drama/serious show.
    That's very true in my life at least (regarding re-watchability of comedies vs. dramas, etc). For instance, I tried re-watching Breaking Bad a little ways back and as fantastic as that show is I just couldn't get up for it. I'm wondering if enough time has gone by now to make it work, but the payoff is so much in that first run that it's just not the same. Comedies on the other hand will still make me laugh and kind of bask in the levity of it all. I think that I can recapture the "warm blanket feeling," but not so much the energy required to immerse so deeply into a drama. The different show types just ask different things from you.
    Agreed, so many dramas the big part of it is, well, drama.  And when you already know how it gets resolved that basically ruins it.  The only chance is giving it enough time where you might remember the big moments but not quite everything leading up to it.
    Travis
  • DeeDee Adelaide
    I think for sheer wow factor - True Detective S1. If you strip away all the glitz, the story is kind of meh, but the combination of that cast and Cary Fukunaga directing was enough to keep me riveted to the screen. 
  • MattyWeavesMattyWeaves Mid-State New York
    I sat here thinking of how I could narrow it down so I started reading through the comments. I'm going to be that loser and go in three different directions based on their impact.

    Two of mine have been mentioned, The Leftovers season 2, and Parks & Rec season 3. Leftovers is there for the emotions and Parks & Rec is there to make me happy. 

    But I always forget about one, season 5 of Doctor Who aka the first season with Matt Smith as the 11th Doctor. I don't see it mentioned here much, but Doctor Who is the hopeful show I need. Especially since that's when he meets Vincent van Gogh.
    Travis

  • Two of mine have been mentioned, The Leftovers season 2, and Parks & Rec season 3. Leftovers is there for the emotions and Parks & Rec is there to make me happy. 

    But I always forget about one, season 5 of Doctor Who aka the first season with Matt Smith as the 11th Doctor. I don't see it mentioned here much, but Doctor Who is the hopeful show I need. Especially since that's when he meets Vincent van Gogh.
    *respect knuckles for the Parks/Leftovers combo*

    Also, one of my favorite coffee cups that we have is the Van Gogh Exploding Tardis that we ordered from (pretty sure it was) Think Geek. That was a really great season.
    MattyWeaves
  • davemcbdavemcb Melbourne
    edited July 10
    I know this defeats the purpose but the choice would be out of

    True Detective S1
    Dexter S4
    Wire S3
    Homeland S1
    Twin Peaks S1
    The Americans S4
    I cant pick a Breaking Bad season because I binged the whole series in a week to make the finale live. 

    I would probably lean towards TD S1 as its a good re watch and can be done in a done if you want. 

    Its a lot of early seasons when the idea is at its best and mid seasons when the writers, show runners etc have figured it all out
    TravisElisa
  • TravisTravis CA
    edited July 10
    Even though it hasn't been mentioned, this thread is making me want to re-watch Carnivale season 1, which I think is significant. I don't remember it at all aside from Clancy Brown being awesome. My subconscious might be trying to tell me that it is worthy of this conversation.
    MattyWeavesDeeKingKobra
  • MattyWeavesMattyWeaves Mid-State New York
    @Travis We might be television soul mates. I have the Exploding Tardis print on my wall and my wife has it on a dress.

    Aaaand Carnivale is one of the greatest canceled shows ever. I never mention it because hardly anyone knows about it, and it was killed off obviously way too early so it feels weird to name it as a top show. Clancy Brown will always be Brother Justin to me. 

    And Management might be one of the scariest things ever. I hear that voice from time to time in trailers or voice over stuff and it creeps me out.
    TravisKingKobra
  • Garthgou81Garthgou81 Placerville, CA
    I always really hoped we would get a some sort of wrap up for Carnivale. Even if it was in comic or novel form or something. Based on interviews that I read the creator had a six-season plan, its really a crime that it got cut off just as they were finding their footing. 
    MattyWeavesTravisKingKobra
  • chriskchrisk Indianapolis
    I can’t pick one. This is my pool though:

    Stranger Things, both seasons.
    Gilmore Girls, season 2 or 3
    The Wire, Season 4
    Justified, Season 3 (the weirdest, funniest season)
    Hannibal, Season 1
    Broad City, Season 1

    The Terror might make this list. Will have to give it some time.  

    Also, Dexter Season 1 popped in my head. The problem is that the show slowly diluted and repeated itself over the following seasons so I actually have negative feelings about what made it unique and fun. But I remember being kind of viscerally thrilled and repulsed by it. I didn’t enjoy the murdering but it broke ground in terms of what kind of character you could root for, and therefore actually had something new to offer. Love the sense of place too. It mostly wasn’t filmed in Miami but it sure felt like it. 

    TravisSchlupp
  • TravisTravis CA
    edited July 10
    @Travis We might be television soul mates. I have the Exploding Tardis print on my wall and my wife has it on a dress.

    Aaaand Carnivale is one of the greatest canceled shows ever. I never mention it because hardly anyone knows about it, and it was killed off obviously way too early so it feels weird to name it as a top show. Clancy Brown will always be Brother Justin to me. 

    And Management might be one of the scariest things ever. I hear that voice from time to time in trailers or voice over stuff and it creeps me out.
    *high five* That's awesome, man! I need to go look it up. I bet that looks awesome on a dress. My wife might dig that too.

    Yeah, this seals it. I totally need to re-watch Carnivale.
  • akritenbrinkakritenbrink Lynnwood, WA (Seattle area)
    This answer clearly suffers from recency bias, but Handmaid's Tale season 1.
    Travis
  • edited July 11
    I feel the separation of Drama and Comedy is essential when ranking tv shows because the effects you feel from each genre and the impact on the culture that each has. So first up comedy:

    1. Arrested Development S1
    2. Seinfeld S7
    3. It’s Always Sunny S6
    4. The Office S4
    5. That 70s Show S1

    Honorable Mentions: Peep Show S4, Parks and Rec S4

    Now Drama: 

    1. The Leftovers S2
    2. Breaking Bad S5
    3. Dexter S4
    4. Breaking Bad S4
    5. Game of Thrones S6

    Honorable Mentions: Prison Break S1, Heroes S1

    (I feel like Dexter and That 70s Show might need explanation: I was really into Dexter until the beginning of Season 5, but each of the first four seasons just kept getting better and better culminating in the fourth with the best arc yet. Just watching Hall and Lithgow duke it out was amazing; That 70s Show was the first tv DVD I was given as a Christmas gift and in a time when I had no cable, no internet, and not many other dvds, I watched season 1 over and over. I went back and watched season 1 with my wife recently and we laughed so much but the rest of the show really goes downhill. So I know it’s not a great show but that first season is one of the best seasons of comedy I’ve ever seen.)
    MattyWeavesTravisSchlupp
  • MichelleMichelle California
    chrisk said:
    The Terror might make this list. Will have to give it some time.  
    I forgot about The Terror!  I'm adding it to my list of others that all tied for 1st place.
  • HatorianHatorian Dagobah
    Man. great question. 

    for replay ability: The Office Season 4
    for Nostalgia and comedy: The Simpsons season 3
    for superb drama: Breaking Bad season 5
    best single season show: Band of Brothers

    best season from my favorite show: Its Always Sunny three way tie 3,4,5

    runner ups
    Wire season 3
    Mr robot season 1

    rkcrawf
  • Hatorian said:
    Man. great question. 

    for replay ability: The Office Season 4
    for Nostalgia and comedy: The Simpsons season 3
    for superb drama: Breaking Bad season 5
    best single season show: Band of Brothers

    best season from my favorite show: Its Always Sunny three way tie 3,4,5

    runner ups
    Wire season 3
    Mr robot season 1

    I was trying to think what the best Simpsons season was. Definitely something in the 3-5 range but I couldn't get further than that. 
  • It's particularly hard to pinpoint a single season when the rest of the series maintains high quality.  I couldn't decide the best season of the Wire or Always Sunny.

    True Detective 1 has to be my choice just because the disparity is so much more obvious.


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