The best TV shows of 2022

Our personal picks for the best programs of the year

Photo+Courtesy+of+the+Abbott+Elementary+official+Facebook+page.+

Photo Courtesy of the “Abbott Elementary” official Facebook page.

By Ashviny Kaur and Shannon Moore

“Better Call Saul”

I’ve already written an entire article praising the “Breaking Bad” sequel, but I’ll gush over “Better Call Saul” any chance I get. Taking place six years before the events involving Walter White and his meth empire, “Better Call Saul” follows the life of Saul Goodman before he’s even Saul. In the beginning of the show, he’s Jimmy McGill, a freshly licensed lawyer ready to take on the world. The last season of the show aired this past summer, and it was the best yet.

Despite being told mostly in black and white, the last season of “Better Call Saul” has the heart and emotion that I felt “Breaking Bad” lacked. Both Goodman/McGill, played by Bob Odenkrik, and his partner in life and in crime Kim Welxer, played by Rhea Seehorn, deliver compelling performances that deserve all the praise. The finale was a heart-wrenching conclusion to the Saul saga, and still has me thinking about it to this day. “Better Call Saul” is definitely one of the best shows of the decade. Seasons 1-5 are streaming on Netflix, and Season 6 is available on AMC plus.

“Abbott Elementary”

Fans of classic workplace comedies like “The Office” and “Parks and Rec,” listen up. I was late to the “Abbott Elementary” train, and that may be my biggest regret of the year. Quinta Brunson, head writer and lead actor, reinvigorated the sitcom for our generation.

Following a group of about seven employees at Abbott Elementary school in Philadelphia, the show highlights the enormous problems of the public school system, along with the amazing teachers that keep it running. This year, “Abbott Elementary” took home Emmys for Outstanding Comedy Series and Best Writing, both well deserved. Brunson reworked the sitcom formula for the current day and age, with topical pop culture references and social media incorporation that doesn’t feel forced or out of place.

The show is sweet in nature, often highlighting healthy intergenerational relationships and friendships between women. This show also has the classic sitcom couple slow burn goodness between Quinta’s character Janine and “Everybody Hates Chris” star Tyler James Williams. Jim and Pam, you’ve got competition. Watch “Abbott Elementary” on ABC or Hulu and witness sitcom history in the making.

“Andor”

“Andor” is not only the best Star Wars show, it is one of the best pieces of content the Star Wars franchise has ever produced. Andor is a sequel to “Rogue one: A Star Wars Story” that follows Cassian Andor, played by Diego Luna, and his journey to join the Rebellion against the Empire. With a star-studded supporting cast of Stellan Skarsgård, Genevieve O’Reilly, Fiona Shaw and Andy Serkis, “Andor” delivers one of the best television shows ever.

This isn’t necessarily a typical Star Wars story, it’s a story of rebellion, oppression and power that takes place within the Star Wars world. The characters are extremely developed and unique, each one with their own motivations and morals. One can’t help but feel for them and their cause, which makes the power of the Empire that much more terrifying. “Andor” has some of the best action sequences of the year, incredible visuals and high stakes. I truly can’t praise this show enough. Season 1 finished airing and all episodes are now available on Disney Plus. Season 2 is currently in production.

“House of the Dragon”

Announced in March 2022, “House of the Dragon” is a prequel spin-off to HBO’s award-winning series “Game of Thrones.” Set 200 years prior to the events of the original show, the series follows the rise of the Targaryen family and their centuries-long dynasty. While some believed the series would be too similar to “Game of Thrones,” “House of the Dragon” is familiar, but also a breath of fresh air.

With a more than talented cast including Matt Smith (“Doctor Who”), Paddy Considine (“Hot Fuzz”) and Olivia Cooke (“Thoroughbreds”), the series was praised for its character development, soundtrack and score. I’ve loved “Game of Thrones” since I was in high school, and this series reignited that passion.

I cannot praise this show enough, and even though some people criticized the numerous time jumps, I believe that showrunners Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik executed them very well. The story flowed smoothly, and even though the series pulled a lot of details from George R.R. Martin’s “Fire and Blood,” it was never bogged down by this and deserves every bit of praise it is receiving.

“Wednesday”

Over the years, there’s been a number of adaptations of “The Addams Family,” and while I do love the original film with Anjelica Huston and Christina Ricci, it might be dethroned by Netflix’s “Wednesday.”

The show is a slight departure from other adaptations which focus on the Addams family as a whole, instead centering on their daughter Wednesday. Portrayed magnificently by Jenna Ortega, the character is a treat to watch throughout the entire series. She is quick-witted and cold, exactly how Wednesday Addams should be. The series as a whole is comforting, as it toes the line between being too serious and too funny. This is one of the better productions Netflix released in the past few years, and I highly recommend it to everyone, whether they’ve watched “The Addams Family” or not.

Shannon Moore can be reached at [email protected], and Ashviny Kaur can be reached at [email protected]