This year, in America alone, there were over 400 scripted comedies and dramas across various cable, free-to-air and streaming platforms – that’s more shows than there are days in the year, and a bewildering amount of content. It’s starting to feel as though every time you turn around, there’s another must-see series competing for your limited time and attention.

That’s to say nothing of TV right here in Australia, which has had a stellar year in both scripted and non-scripted shows, and seen us glued to the every move of various bachelorettes, real housewives, hopeless renovators and would-be chefs. THERE’S JUST TOO MUCH DAMN TELEVISION TO GO AROUND.

These Are Pedestrian’s Top 10 Favourite TV Shows Of 2015

With that in mind, we’ve decided to narrow the field down to our 10 favourite television shows of the year. As with our annual favourite films poll, we’re not saying that this is the ~best~ TV on offer – instead, these are the shows that we watch compulsively, that we hassle our mates into checking out, that we discuss every day around the office and debate heatedly with strangers online. 

Ladies and gentlemen, let’s get right to it: These are Pedestrian’s Top 10 Favourite TV Shows Of 2015.

10. Game Of Thrones

With another dark, violent and broody season of Game Of Thrones behind us, the series has begun to catch up with the books, leaving us with a number of burning questions: What the hell is going to happen to Daenerys, whisked away on her dragon and now surrounded by a Dothraki army? Is Jon Snow actually dead for real, and if not, how will the show bring him back? Was Kit Harrington‘s Wimbledon hair all a big bluff? TELL US, DAMMIT. The sixth season of Thrones kicks off on HBO some time next April, which still seems like a really, really long time away …

9. Please Like Me

Josh Thomas‘s eccentric, Gen-Y coming-of-age comedy was one of our favourite shows of last year, and it remained just as funny as ever in its third season, while exploring more grown-up territory again. The new batch of episodes revolved around Josh’s awkward, burgeoning relationship with Keegan Joyce‘s Arnold, exploring his struggles with anxiety in a way that felt extremely raw and real, and not shying away from the sometimes-confronting parts of their sex life. Amidst all this, season three of Please Like Me maintained its off-beat charms, and sent Josh Thomas’s star rising ever higher.

These Are Pedestrian’s Top 10 Favourite TV Shows Of 2015


8. You’re The Worst

The FX network’s You’re The Worst is one of the more low-key shows of the last few years, but for our money, it’s also one of the smartest comedies on television. A story about two mean, narcissistic and deeply self-involved individuals circling around a vortex of couplehood, the show is as funny as it is nasty, and in the newest season, it took a surprisingly raw detour into a major character’s bout of clinical depression. The show has continued to build momentum throughout its first two seasons, and deserves to find an even bigger audience in its third.


7. Silicon Valley

The second season of Mike Judge‘s scathing tech world satire Silicon Valley expanded the show’s cast, while dropping the motley gang of programmers and would-be entrepreneurs into ever-more volatile situations. The overarching plot of season two concerned a lawsuit over the ownership of Pied Piper, but the show still found time for plenty of bickering and one-upmanship between Dinesh and Gilfoyle, and found a character even more abrasive than T.J. Miller‘s Ehrlich in Chris Diamantopoulous‘ Russ Hanneman. Overall, season two kept us hooked, and maintained the slacker Social Network vibe that made the first so damn entertaining.

6. Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Brooklyn Nine-Nine provides our semi-weekly dose of Andy Samberg, for which we are eternally grateful, and this was another solid year for the cop comedy, which is halfway though its third season. The new episodes have messed around with established order of things, shuffling Holt off to a new job away from the antics of the precinct, and while these changes keep the plot fresh, the real joy of Brooklyn Nine-Nine is in watching the hugely gifted cast, including Samberg, Chelsea Peretti, Andre BraugherTerry Crews and Melissa Fumero, play off one-other for laughs.

These Are Pedestrian’s Top 10 Favourite TV Shows Of 2015

5. Transparent

Jill Soloway‘s comedy-drama Transparent has been showered in awards glory, with multiple Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for its no-holds-barred story of a transgender woman’s late-in-life transition. Geoffrey Tambour stars as retired college professor who opens up to her family about the fact that she identifies as a woman; the show, the second season of which is streaming now, deals with the ensuing familial confusion, as her loved ones deal (or don’t deal, in some cases) with her big news. A funny and heart-warming show, Transparent is anchored by Tambour’s sensitive performance in the once-in-a-lifetime role of Maura.

4. Broad City

It feels very 2010 to be throwing around phrases like ‘spirit animal’, but having said that, there’s no other way to describe Abbi and Ilana, whose lives are basically our own, but way funnier and more eventful. If possible, the second season of Broad City may have surpassed the first, with life finding ever more creative ways to crush Abbi’s dreams, and Ilana reaching new heights of ego and self-absorption, culminating in the episode in which she literally dates her exact double, played by Arrested Development‘s Alia Shawkat. The ladies have had us on a drip feed of web episodes, like the one in which they scarf down bacon on a Jewish holiday, as the long wait for season three continues. We literally can not wait.

These Are Pedestrian’s Top 10 Favourite TV Shows Of 2015

3. Last Week Tonight With John Oliver

With no shortage of opinions and hot takes surrounding every major news event, you can always count on John Oliver to cut through the bullshit and get straight to the heart of the matter. This year, he has cast his hilarious and informed gaze on issues ranging from the fiasco surrounding Johnny Depp‘s dogs to discrimination against transgender people. Of everything he did this year, though, his foul-mouthed and highly cathartic rant in the wake of the Paris attacks said everything we wanted to say. As always, Oliver was stunningly on-point.

2. MasterChef Australia

Aussie reality TV had a rich year of heroes and villains – cc Clare Tamas from Married At First Sight – but no show held us riveted quite like MasterChef. From John’s infuriating tendency to fuck his teammates over via the medium of white chocolate, to pressure test dishes like Anna Polyviou‘s carrot cake, which made us weep with their sheer complexity, MasterChef was on fire throughout 2015. We’re still not sure if we love how much we fear Marco Pierre White, or fear how much we love him. ICMYI, we savoured every bite of the show this year in our heavily extensive recaps

1. Master Of None 

While the 2015 TV pool was so big that this list could easily have been five times as long, the Netflix original series Master Of None was our unanimous choice for our favourite TV show of the year. While the premise of the show – portrait of the artist as a young man sorting out his career and relationship angst in the big city – is something we’ve seen before many times, Aziz Ansari‘s comedic voice makes these familiar tropes seem fresh and new. 

These Are Pedestrian’s Top 10 Favourite TV Shows Of 2015

As Dev, an actor who has yet to surpass his big break acting in a yoghurt commercial, Ansari leads an eclectic cast that includes everyone from Eric Wareheim as his “token white friend” to former Saturday Night Live cast member Noël Wells, who is luminous as his perpetually out-of-reach love interest Rachel. The show’s approach to storytelling always feels fresh, as in the episode in which Dev and his Taiwanese-American friend Brian reflect on their complicated relationships with their immigrant dads. 

Above all, though, Master Of None is funny as hell, and gives Aziz Ansari, who we’ve loved since his Parks And Recreation days, a chance to shine in a leading role. It’s for all these reasons that we’re delighted to declare it our favourite show of the year. 

Honourable mentions:

The Bachelorette Australia

The Bachelor Australia

The Real Housewives Of Melbourne

Married At First Sight

If You Are The One

Inside Amy Schumer

Veep

Mad Men

Fargo

The Comeback

Key & Peele

TV statistic via Vulture

Image: Supplied