<p>Making a Murderer</p>

Making a Murderer

Credit: Netflix

While I was out: 'Making a Murderer,' blog plans, and more

Lots of new shows coming out over the next month, but not as many to get excited about

Happy New Year, everybody! I've been on vacation since Christmas — give or take a quick pop-in to discuss the news that George R.R. Martin's next book definitely won't be out before the next "Game of Thrones" season — but spent time here and there struggling to make the ascent up Screener Mountain. Not only are there a few dozen TV shows premiering in January alone, but press tour officially starts tomorrow (I don't get there til Thursday), so between the broadcast networks, cable, and the various streaming outlets, it's been a terrifying reminder that, as John Landgraf once said, we haven't hit Peak TV in America quite yet.

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<p>Game of Thrones</p>

Game of Thrones

Credit: HBO

'Game of Thrones' season 6 will be out before George R.R. Martin's next book

The next season of "Game of Thrones" still doesn't have an official premiere date. Now it has an even bigger level of uncertainty attached, as George R.R. Martin has revealed that his next book won't be done in time to be published before "GoT" season 6 debuts — which means, for the first time, the show will be able to spoil the books, instead of the other way around.

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<p>Transparent</p>

Transparent

Credit: Amazon

Nazis, spanking, and atonement: Every episode of 'Transparent' season 2, reviewed

A look back at a tumultous year for the Pfefferman clan

We're approaching the end of 2015, which is one of the few times on the calendar, even in a year that's seen a whopping 409 original scripted series air at one point or another, where there's not a lot going on in the TV business. So I'm mostly spending these next couple of weeks watching 2016 screeners. But I did promise, when I published my interview with "Transparent" creator Jill Soloway, that I'd be back soon with brief thoughts on each episode of season 2, and it's belatedly time for that, with lots of spoilers coming up just as soon as I love the flavor of lost lesbian wedding dream cake...

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<p>The Knick</p>

The Knick

Credit: Cinemax

Review: Did Steven Soderbergh and Clive Owen just end 'The Knick'?

A botched surgery and an ambiguous statement leave the hospital drama's future a mystery

"The Knick" just ended its second season in a way suggesting it could very easily be the series finale, but maybe it won't be. Spoilers for the finale, plus Cinemax's statement on where things stand for the show's potential future, and a few thoughts on season 2 as a whole, coming up just as soon as I can't look at encased meats the same way anymore...

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<p>Star Wars: The Force Awakens</p>

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Credit: Disney

'Star Wars,' 'Creed,' and when your sequel is really a remake

HitFix
A-
Readers
B+
J.J. Abrams and company got to play mix-and-match with the best parts of the original trilogy

This morning, I went to see "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," and wound up having many of the same feelings I did when I saw "Creed" earlier this month. I'm going to get into exactly why, along with many spoilers for "Star Wars" (you're pretty much safe on "Creed" spoilers), coming up just as soon as I'm a big deal in the Resistance...

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<p>The Leftovers, You&#39;re the Worst, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt</p>

The Leftovers, You're the Worst, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Credit: HBO/FXX/Netflix

Naked lip syncs, karaoke in Hell, and more: TV's best musical moments of 2015

Great uses of songs on 'Mad Men,' 'Broad City,' 'Mr. Robot' & a lot more

'Tis the season to be list-making, and while the rest of Team HitFix was brainstorming a list of the year's best musical moments in movies, they asked me to pitch in a couple of TV scenes. Without even thinking hard, I'd given them a half-dozen, and knew there were plenty of other obvious ones. So I told them to finish up the movie list (which you can read here), and set off to think of more TV moments.

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<p>F is for Family</p>

F is for Family

Credit: Netflix

Review: Bill Burr goes back to the '70s for Netflix's 'F is for Family'

HitFix
B+
Readers
n/a
An animated throwback to the early '70s with a fantastic title sequence

It's not a knock on Netflix's "F is for Family" to say that its title sequence is far and away the best thing about it. The animated comedy, set in an unnamed Rust Belt city in 1973 where Frank Murphy (Bill Burr, who co-created the show with "Simpsons" vet Michael Price) works in the baggage handling department of a local airline, has a pretty dazzling one that tells you everything you need to know about its hero — his backstory, his frustration, and the main themes of the story — in a brisk 45 seconds.

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<p>Manhattan</p>

Manhattan

Credit: WGN

Why 'Manhattan' should continue past tonight's stunning finale

A great final image, but Sam Shaw has more story to tell

"Manhattan," WGN America's drama about the scientists, soldiers, and spouses involved in and around the Manhattan Project, is a great drama (one I happily placed on my 2015 TV honorable mentions list today) that not nearly enough people are watching. (Here's my review from the start of season 2 to give you some background on the show and broader thoughts on why it's so excellent, in case you don't want to be spoiled on what's coming.) 

Tonight's taut finale, about the famous Trinity test of the atomic bomb, ended in a way that had me wondering if perhaps the show's creator, Sam Shaw, had just chosen to wrap up the series. As it turns out, that wasn't his intention at all, though "Jupiter" — and particularly its haunting final sequence — would be one hell of a series finale. Shaw's plans for the series go well beyond that, and after hearing his pitch, I very much want to see what comes next. Spoilers and conversation coming up just as soon as I set the atmosphere on fire...

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TV Honorable Mentions of 2015: 'Broad City,' 'Mr. Robot,' 'Hannibal' & more
Credit: Netflix/NBC/AMC

TV Honorable Mentions of 2015: 'Broad City,' 'Mr. Robot,' 'Hannibal' & more

So much greatness even waaaaay outside the top 10

Last week, I published my top 10 list of shows that aired this year. It was a damn fine list. I'm happy with every single show that's on it. But I was also very frustrated at all the shows I had to leave off. In Peak TV — as with the current state of the Baseball Hall of Fame ballot — 10 just doesn't seem like enough spots to recognize all the deserved greatness.

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<p>Fargo</p>

Fargo

Credit: FX

Review: 'Fargo' sticks the season 2 landing with 'Palindrome'

Do Ed and Peggy live? Does Lou make it back to Betsy in time? And whither Hanzee?

A review of the "Fargo" season 2 finale coming up just as soon as I decree no more schnitzel or strudel...

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