Get to know me… with TV series!

If you haven’t read my previous post about my favorite movies, then go check that out before continuing. There are different ways to get to know somebody, but I think that his favorite movies and tv series can already tell you quite a lot about a person. Let’s talk about some of my most beloved tv series.

My favorite action tv series

24 by Joel Surnow and Robert Cochran (2001 – 2010)

With more than 200 episodes in 9 seasons including a television movie, this tv series has accompanied me for quite a stretch of my life. Looking back at the storyline, the idea of having a season happen all in one day, hour by hour, was an awesome and novel feature.
While the story of 24 was never high-level cinema, there was always tension and excitement about what happens next. 24 is about Jack Bauer working at the Counter Terrorist Unit in the USA.
During the span of 9 seasons, Jack Bauer has to endure and survive a lot of terrorist attacks. Kiefer Sutherland was and is the main part of this series, which is why the new spin-off (Legacy) didn’t work out. His performance as Jack Bauer improved from season to season until it peaked in seasons 8 and 9. He was the reason I started watching Designated Survivor.
An honorable mention goes out to Happy!

My favorite crime tv series

Sopranos by David Chase (1999 – 2007)

For those of you, who have read the movies post know, that I love crime and mafia movies, so it’s probably no surprise to see The Sopranos on my list of favorite tv series.
With 6 seasons and over 80 episodes, this series will keep you hooked. The depth in the story and the characters, as well as the combination of family drama and mafia drama, make this show one of the most memorable. There are times when you are rooting for some of the characters while feeling burning hate towards another, only to have everything switched around and becoming more and more grey.
An honorable mention goes out to House of Cards (technically more politics, but you can make a point that there is a lot of crime in there, too.)

My favorite horror-comedy tv series

Ash vs Evil Dead by Sam Raimi (2015 – 2018)

I have already mentioned the Evil Dead movie franchise in my movies post. Ash vs Evil dead takes the main character, played by the awesome Bruce Campbell and continues the story of Ashy Slashy. Revisiting the world of Evil Dead, including the same humor, gory kills, and crazy one-liners, is one of the best experiences I’ve seen in the last few years. When the series was announced I actually expected it to be muddled down and mutilated into some Hollywood show, that is either too serious or too dumb to be a true successor.
Knowing that Sam Raimi, the man behind the original movies, came back to do the series, all my doubts were gone and as soon as the first episode was done I was left sitting in my chair with an open mouth and nothing to say. The only negative, but probably also positive that is worth mentioning is, that the series ends after 3 seasons and 30 episodes with no chance of it ever being continued, since Bruce Campbell himself said, he was done with the franchise.
An honorable mention goes out to Preacher.

The one tv series that (kinda) fits my profession

Mr Robot by Sam Esmail (2015 – Present)

This tv show has one of the best representations of hacking I have ever seen. Programming and hacking isn’t some magic that is done on some special made up operating system, but it’s rather the art of finding solutions to problems or holes in a security.
We follow the life of Elliot Alderson, a white hat hacker by day and a grey hat hacker by night. There is a lot more to the series than hacking. The real stars of the show are the character cast and the story, that use hacking as a tool instead of a gimmick. At the moment there are 32 episodes in 3 seasons and there is one last season on the way.
I honestly can’t think of an honorable mention, that is similar enough to fit the title.

The tv series, that had a lasting impact

Band of Brothers/The Pacific by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks

I don’t think there has ever been a movie or a tv series that hit me as hard as these two. Both seasons (with different names) follow a group of soldiers during World War 2 and focusses on their experiences rather than pure facts. What makes this series especially interesting is, that these exact soldiers have been interviewed by the producers of the show to get a unique angle on the whole story.
Please don’t think you could watch this series with a bucket of popcorn and have a great time. It is not fun to watch 10 one hour long episodes of war, but it certainly is engaging and absolutely worth it, but be sure to be in a good mood before watching.
There is no way to find a similarly hard-hitting tv series for me and if there is, then I certainly haven’t watched it yet.

My favorite performance of an actor inside a tv series

Hannibal by Bryan Fuller (2013 – 2015)

Have you ever watched a tv series or movie, where you were kind of rooting for the bad guy or just wanted to see more of him? Hannibal, played by the awesome Mads Mikkelson, has been that “bad guy”, even though it sometimes feels wrong to call him that. There are a lot of layers to most of the main characters in the show, but Hannibal has to be most interesting. It is fascinating to see this serial killer being the most intelligent and in many ways most civilized character in the whole tv series. The only downside to the series is the abrupt end after 3 seasons and 39 episodes.
An honorable mention goes out to Ash vs Evil Dead.

My favorite cartoon series

Rick and Morty by Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon (2013 – Present)

I have watched countless hours of cartoons during my childhood, but during my teenager time it completely died down. The first series, that revived this interest in cartoon content was the beloved Rick and Morty. Most of you have heard about this series and some of you are probably fed up hearing about it, but despite that, the show has its qualities and deserves its praise. With 31 episodes in 3 seasons and many more episodes coming, this series keeps you entertained and craving for more.
An honorable mention goes out to Bojack Horseman.

The biggest plot twists and mind-bender tv series

Westworld by Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy (2016 – Present)

I usually don’t like movies and tv series, that go for a very complicated plot or put in twists just to surprise the viewer. Westworld was one of these shows, that actually scratched the line between being enjoyable and being way too complicated to still understand since it twists and changes so much. In the end, the plot is just clear enough to keep you hooked but complex enough to allow for reveals and crazy mind bends. If you decide to watch this show, prepare yourself for 2 seasons of old school western, brutality, sci-fi and non-erotic nudity (which is rare these days).
An honorable mention goes out to Mr. Robot.

The tv series that won me over, even though I didn’t like the genre

Game of Thrones by David Benioff und D. B. Weiss (2011 – 2019)

So many people love Game of Thrones, but I wasn’t one of them for most of the time. While I watched the first few seasons, it was more of side-content to me, since medieval times and fantasy stories do not catch my interest in the slightest.
With the announcement of the very controversial season 8, I started watching the rest of the remaining seasons to catch up and that’s when it grabbed me. It was the writing and the characters that kept me going through all 8 seasons and 73 episodes and while many people rightly criticize the last season for many faults, I can’t say that I haven’t enjoyed every moment of it, including season 8.
An honorable mention goes out to Sherlock.

My favorite historical (but not historical) tv series

Spartacus by Steven S. DeKnight (2010 – 2013)

If you want a tv show that just drenches itself in blood, gore, and testosterone, then Spartacus might be the right thing. While that alone doesn’t result in a compelling show, the characters and plot also fit right into the whole concept.
While the story itself isn’t historically correct, the world they are building in the series feels extremely real and believable – less clean and washed than most of the other tv shows portraying Rome.
Be aware though that the main actor of the show switches between season 1 and 2 since the original actor suffered from cancer and eventually died in 2011.
The series is spanning 4 seasons (including a prequel season) and includes 39 episodes.
An honorable mention goes out to Rome.