So remember how Fienberg and I spent much of 2013 talking about the very high-class problem of Too Much Good TV? Remember how each of us wound up having to do top 25 lists (mine & his), and at least one Best of the Rest list, in an attempt to recognize even a decent portion of all that quality?
Well, it looks like 2014 has the potential to be even stronger than this year was.
In a little over a week, the winter Television Critics Association press tour is starting, which means we've been deluged with screeners for many the notable network and cable shows debuting over the next month or two. It's an intimidating pile in terms of both quantity and quality. HBO's "True Detective" already feels like it has a very high position secured for next year's top 10 list, for instance. Had it debuted in the fall as planned, FOX's "Enlisted" would have put nearly all of the other first-year comedies to shame. "Community" is coming back with Dan Harmon at the helm again, and early returns are promising. "Justified" and "Shameless" and "Archer" are coming back in the next couple of months. Sundance is debuting another original series in "The Red Road." Netflix will give us new seasons of "Orange Is the New Black" and "House of Cards." "Sherlock" finally gives us its third season. "Hannibal" is back at the end of February, earlier than expected. The new seasons of "Game of Thrones" and "Mad Men" will presumably be on in their usual spring windows.
So even without "Breaking Bad," "Enlightened," or a few other shows that made one or both of our best-of lists for 2013, 2014 does not appear to be lacking for impressive stuff.
Dan, Liane Bonin Starr and I picked out some of the premieres — for both new and returning shows — we're most excited about, along with other notable premiere dates that we know about. We're not even really getting into shows for summer, or for next fall ("Boardwalk Empire" should be back then, for instance), but just covering the winter and what little we know about early spring. But buckle up and start carving out some time and some DVR space, kiddies. Looks to be a fun ride.