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Seventeenth Annual TV BiteMes

The 2015-2016
Seventeenth Annual TV BiteMes

by Neena Louise

Worst Actress
Stana Katic, “Kate Beckett”, Castle
Katic takes the crown back from Jennifer Coolidge for the first time in 4 seasons, primarily because I didn’t watch 2 Broke Girls at all this season. I only watched 2 episodes of Castle, but couldn’t take any more than that because of Katic’s stilted, uninspiring performance. Too bad it’s been canceled, primarily due to Katic’s departure – it would probably be better without her.

Best Actress
Jane Lynch, “Amy”, Angel from Hell
The talented Lynch was pretty much the only reason to watch the now-canceled Angel.

Most Overrated Female
Priyanka Chopra, “Alex Parrish”, Quantico
She’s not a bad actress, but her portrayal of “Parrish” in the overrated Quantico was, well, overrated.

Most Overlooked Female
Hayley Atwell, “Peggy Carter”, Agent Carter
The show stank, but Atwell’s turn as “Carter” was excellent. She really needs to get out from under the Avengers franchise. Perhaps the upcoming fall show Conviction will accomplish that. Probably not unless ABC changes that tired and clichéd title, however.

Worst Actor
Josh Dallas, “David Nolan/Prince Charming,” Once Upon a Time
Yes, he’s very cute, but as “Charming”, he was less than charming (see what I did, there?). He always sounded out of breath – even when standing still – and took himself far too seriously.

Best Actor
John Noble, “Morland Holmes”, Elementary
I stopped watching Elementary a couple of seasons ago when it started putting me to sleep. When I heard Noble would be returning to the small screen as “Sherlock”‘s father, I came back to it. Producers, take note: Noble is the only reason to watched the tired Elementary.

Most Overrated Male
Ben McKenzie, “James Gordon”, Gotham
He used his puppy-dog eyes for just two looks: pissed off and ultra mellow.

Most Overlooked Male
Iain De Caestecker, “Leo Fitz”, Agents of SHIELD
It’s easy to get lost on a large ensemble series like SHIELD, but De Caestecker’s turn as “Fitz” was nothing short of outstanding and made this show worth tuning in just to watch him.

Worst-Dressed Female
“Annalise Keating”, Viola Davis, How to Get Away with Murder
Is it just me or did “Annalise”‘s outfits all look to be about a size too small? Davis has a good body – giving Michelle Obama a run for the “best arms” award – and deserved to be dressed better.

Best-Dressed Female
“Alicia Florrick”, Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife
Whether dressed down, dressed for business, or all dolled up, “Alicia” always looked impeccable in perfectly-tailored outfits.

Worst-Dressed Male
“Brian Finch”, Jake McDorman, Limitless
I get that his wardrobe was supposed to reflect his immature stoner persona, but that didn’t mean he had to dress like a 12-year-old. Although I admit I liked some of the T-shirts, they just weren’t suitable for a grown man with a decent job – immature stoner or not.

Best-Dressed Male
“Jimmy Martino”, John Stamos, Grandfathered
The show was stupid and not Stamos’ finest hour, but “Jimmy” was always dressed to perfection.

Worst TV Mom
“Donna Rosewood”, Lorraine Toussaint, Rosewood
Overbearing and meddling, “Donna”‘s refusal to let her grown, medically-fragile son live his own life wasn’t doing him any favors. Mothers like this usually just push their adult children away – sometimes for good.

Best TV Mom
“Beverly Goldberg”, Wendi McLendon-Covey, The Goldbergs
The epitome of a “smother”, “Beverly” was both meddling and loving at the same time, managing to annoy – but not alienate – her teenage children.

Worst TV Dad
“Deacon Claybourne”,  Charles Esten, Nashville
The supposedly grown man “Deacon” constantly acted like an angry, petulant teenager – especially (although not only) with his angry, petulant teenage daughter. All he ever did was scream at her and tell her she was doing everything the wrong way. A sure-fire way to alienate your teen. Which he did.

Best TV Dad
“Jay Pritchett”, Ed O’Neill, Modern Family
Unapologetically set in his ways, he still managed to convey how much he cared for his nutty family.

Worst TV Kid
“Maddie Conrad”, Lennon Stella, Nashville
What a spoiled, obnoxious brat! Sure, her father wasn’t a good parent and was even less mature than her, but it wasn’t as though he was abusive or neglectful. Neither parent did anything so egregious that they deserved to be stabbed in the back in open court just so she could get her own way.

Best TV Kid
“Adam Goldberg”, Sean Giambrone, The Goldbergs
Even though he was socially awkward and had two older bullying siblings, “Adam” never stopped being himself, no matter what anyone else thought.

Least Likable Character on a Show
“Alice Vaughan”, Mireille Enos, The Catch
Not only is Enos not a very good actress, but “Alice” was so incredibly stupid and annoying you just wanted to shake some sense into her.

Most Likable Character on a Show
“Sue Heck”, Eden Sher, The Middle
You just couldn’t help but like “Sue” and her innocent childlike wonder at everything around her.

Worst Drama
Game of Silence
Although the writers and producers deny it, this was adapted from the 2012 Turkish series Suskunlar (Game of Silence), which was based on the 1995 novel Sleepers, which was made into the 1999 movie Sleepers. Talk about beating a dead horse! Sleepers would’ve been a better title for this reimagining, however: when not totally depressing, it was so dull and unengaging, it put one to sleep.

Best Drama
The Good Wife
Its final season was one of its best. RIP.

Worst Sitcom
2 Broke Girls
This needs to be put out of its – and our – misery.

Best Sitcom
The Big Bang Theory
This still takes the category, although I was dismayed by a couple of truly idiotic episodes this season. I hope that’s not the shape of things to come.

Worst SciFi
Heroes Reborn
One of the least-surprising cancelations of the entire season. Maybe NBC will finally realize no amount of reimagining will make viewers return to this tired franchise.

Best SciFi
Second Chance
Fox did such a piss-poor job of promoting this show that I didn’t even know it existed until the season was over – and I keep a sharp on TV networks’ offerings. I stumbled upon it by accident, then wound up binge-watching the entire season online – something I don’t often do. Considering it went through 3 names, 2 timeslots and a reduced episode order, Fox pretty much doomed it before it even began. Idjits.

Worst Animated Series
Fox is known for successful primetime animated series. They need to find a new niche if the utter crap that was Bordertown is any indication.

Best Animated Series
The Simpsons
This wins based solely on its staying power.

Most Overrated Series
It started out refreshing and original, but once its long hiatus was over, it returned as silly and agonizingly slow.

Most Overlooked Series
Second Chance
See “Best SciFi”. The premise was not new and it was, at its core, a cop show. However, the great writing, outstanding acting and fun high-tech made this completely enjoyable. Again I say: the Suits at Fox are idjits.

Worst Writing
Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders

You know the writing is bad when you start finishing sentences before they’re said. This is not a very good show to begin with and, although it’s been renewed, it at least needs better writing if it wants to see season 3.

Best Writing
The Big Bang Theory

Still has some of the best writing, despite its slippage.

Worst Host/Narrator
Christina Tosi, MasterChef, MasterChef Junior
I really enjoyed the MasterChef franchise, but I can’t stand Tosi! She’s not even a chef – master or otherwise. She just bakes. Not very well, either, if last season’s “World Famous Birthday Cake” is any indication: it was ugly, lopsided, and looked like something I might have made when I was 8 years old. Actually, the cakes I made when I was 8 looked better. Add in her seizure-inducing voice and unwarranted holier-than-thou attitude and MasterChef has, sadly, become unwatchable. She must go!

Best Host/Narrator
Phil Keoghan, The Amazing Race
Year after year, Keoghan deals with borderline-nutcase contestants without mocking them, which would be so easy. Could’ve done without the walking-in-front-of-the-clue-box nonsense to explain the task while the contestants were in the background, though.

Worst Newscaster/Reporter
Tamron Hall, Today
She’s far more interested in ensuring everyone knows just how glorious she is rather than reporting current events. Her constant interruptions with inappropriate and awkward statements just made me want to scream “shut up already!”. She can’t even read news off a monitor without stumbling all over her words. Why this excruciatingly cringeworthy joke-of-a-“reporter” is even on the airwaves is a mystery.

Best Newscaster/Reporter
Morley Safer, 60 Minutes
After more than 5 decades as a reporter – 46 years of which were with 60 Minutes – Safer announced his retirement, then passed away less than a week later. One of the greats. RIP.

Worst News Magazine
Yes, this is still on! Tells you how much faith NBC had in it, though, considering it aired in the TV wastelands that are Friday and Saturday nights. It aired on Sunday, too, but against Quantico and various superior cable offerings, it might as well have been Friday or Saturday.

Best News Magazine
60 Minutes
It needs no other reason than it’s lasted 48 seasons – so far.

Worst Reality Show Series
The Bachelor / The Bachelorette
I don’t understand the appeal of these two. They’re so fake with fake drama and fake romance, rife with unlikeable fake people. Lifetime’s scripted UnREAL is far more entertaining and, well, real.

Best Reality Show Series
Undercover Boss
Despite the companies getting more and more obscure and it appearing to be more and more staged, it was still entertaining to see head honchos get down in the trenches.

Worst Reality Game/Contest
American Ninja Warrior
Oh, where do I start? The weirdo contestants that took themselves waaaaay too seriously, the silly competitions, the terrible editing that often cut out performances. . . it all went towards my bewilderment that this piece of crap keeps coming back year after year.

Best Reality Game/Contest
The Amazing Race
Although it started to wobble a little (enough with the focus on social media already!), this still wins.

Worst Reality Villain
Chad Johnson, The Bachelorette
This muscle-bound meathead that was always spoiling for a fight was so obviously putting on a persona for the cameras, he was impossible to take seriously. Good for ratings, though, which I suppose is the whole point.

Best Reality Villain
There weren’t any. All of the so-called “villains” on reality TV this season were so obviously just playing the role that none were delightfully evil. They were just bad actors.

Worst Game Show
Hollywood Game Night
I’m mystified by the ratings this show gets. What is so all-fired entertaining about a bunch of B- and C- (sometimes D-) listers that play parlor games and babble incessantly? Nothing, if you ask me.

Best Game Show
Still a great show, but is it my imagination or is host Alex Trebek getting even more obnoxious? Hard to believe, I know. Time for him to retire and let someone more gracious step in.

Worst Score

It’s not that the music was bad, it was that it was constantly played overly-loud in inappropriate places. You really didn’t need dramatic music blaring when the characters were discussing something as banal as where they were going.

Best Score
The Goldbergs
Rife with 1980s tunes that everyone – young and old – know and, for the most part, love.

Worst Theme Music
The Voice
The only good thing I can say about this theme is that it’s mercifully short on the air. Try listening to the extended version and you’ll be begging for the cacophony to stop.

Best Theme Music
Hawaii 5-0
Written for the original 1960s 5-0, this theme has incredible appeal and staying power. I could listen to it over and over – both the original and new versions.

Original (1968-1980):

New (2010-present):

Worst Newcomer (that hasn’t been canceled)
Shades of Blue
I generally give new series two full episodes before I decide whether I’ll watch it for the long haul. I didn’t make it past one for Blue. Unlikeable characters, off-putting premise, Jennifer Lopez’ terrible acting,  her character’s incessant sobbing. . . it all went towards making this abomination unbearable. I’m shocked that it was renewed.

Best Newcomer (that hasn’t been canceled)
Life in Pieces
Although hardly an original format, with an incredible cast, good writing and funny storylines, this was one of the better sitcoms to grace the airwaves this season, and it only improved week after week. I keep hearing it referred to as a pale Modern Family ripoff, but I don’t see the comparison. Other than being about a family, it’s nothing likeModern Family. There’s no mockumentary aspect and it was more witty, sarcastic and intelligent with fewer annoying characters.

Biggest Decline in Quality
How to Get Away with Murder
Hard to believe this was last year’s Best Drama and Best Newcomer. Although a very tough category this year, given the number of shows whose quality tanked, Murder takes it for becoming so muddled, boring and, at times, just plain stupid.

Most Improved in Quality
Last Man on Earth
I was dismayed last year when Last Man rapidly deteriorated, going from original and fun to tired and boring before its premiere season was even over. It came back this season and was worth watching again.

Worst Network
ABC, which not only lost 18% of its viewership this season, but also canceled the majority of its new series.

Best Network
CBS for being the most-watched network for the second season in a row.

Worst Commercial
Mountain Dew Kickstart, “Puppymonkeybaby”
Could this ad that premiered during the Superbowl be any more annoying and creepy? So off-putting, it invoked immediate channel-changing.

Best Commercial
Honda Ridgeline “Somebody to Love”
I’m not usually a fan of lip-syncing animals, but this one was done so well I couldn’t help but like it. Didn’t hurt that the tune is a fave.

Biggest Stinkers of the Season (Tie)

Of Kings and Prophets and Wicked City
Wicked City
lasted 3 episodes; Of Kings and Prophets, just 2. Neither of these should have ever seen the light of day.

Trend of the Year
For the first time, more than half of the TV-watching public turned away from broadcast TV and towards streaming sites like Netflix and Hulu. Not surprising given that, for a small monthly fee, you can watch all kinds of commercial-free TV whenever you want. This does not mean broadcast TV is dead, but they must get with the times to survive – better on-air programming and online content would be good starts. In particular, both Fox and ABC need to stop making people wait a week and a day to watch a missed episode. If one can’t watch a missed episode before the new one airs, it’s more likely than not they’ll stop watching the series altogether – something I did more than once this season.

Least Magical Moment
“Elizabeth Keen” [Megan Boone] revealed to be alive on The Blacklist
Oh, didn’t see that one coming a bazillion gazillion miles away [roll eyes here].

Most Magical Moment
12-year-old hopeful dancer Tahani Anderson puking on Paula Abdul, So You Think You Can Dance
I couldn’t help thinking: poetic justice. Abdul is so saccharine it’s enough to make anyone puke, after all.

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