On June 7, 2019, TV Guide published their 2019 Superlatives, a list of different categories from the 2018-2019 television season that aimed to capture “TV Season’s Best Moments." Even though I have not watched every show, I am familiar with all of them, and will be comparing the opinions of the TV Guide writers to my own.
The first of TV Guide’s Superlatives was Best Binge, which was awarded to Lifetime series YOU , which gained popularity after it was put on Netflix. The show was watched enough for Netflix to pick it up for a second season. We all know Netflix lends itself to binging, so judging purely by the massive amount of viewership, this thriller about a stalker deserves the award for Best Binge.
Most Underestimated Show went to Fox’s Masked Singer . This one spoke for itself in my opinion. According to the TV Guide Superlative article , the show had “the highest rated unscripted debut in more than seven years." What makes it underestimated is probably the fact that the first time many of us saw the first advertisement for the show, our immediate and often audible reaction was, “That looks stupid." Celebrities, most of them removed from the spotlight, wearing extravagant costumes with giant heads, seemed beneath us. Apparently, we all tuned in anyways.
Best Reunion went to The CW’s Supernatural and, right off the bat, I am going to disagree with this one for a couple reasons. The reunion TV Guide refers to was in the show’s 300th episode, when the Winchesters reunite with their father. I never got to this episode and this is one reason I have to disagree. The show dragged on for so long that viewers making it that far is a pure testament to their iron will. This award was also given to the show over some wonderful reunions in the otherwise abysmal final season of Game of Thrones . If I am to pick my favorite, it would be Bran and Jaime.
The next award was to Netflix’s The Haunting of Hill House for Most Haunting Shot. The show, which even has “Haunting" in its name, was released to much positive acclaim. If I were to pick another option, it would be from Episode Three, “Replay," of CBS’s new Twilight Zone . Despite the show’s faults, which I believe directly relates to a lack of the haunting finishes that the original series captured so well, “Replay" tackles the issue of racially-driven police brutality. The entire episode felt very Jordan Peele-esque, as a mother constantly has to replay trying to bring her son to college while combating the insanely intense efforts of a racist police officer. The repetition and frustration are perfectly captured in a shot of the mother and son leaving a diner and being confronted in the parking lot.
The next superlative was for Biggest Twist, and it was a twist in and of itself. The award went to NBC’s The Good Place’s Hot Chidi. Though TV Guide addressed some of the obvious twists that happened in television this year, they took the award in good fun and included the statement, “Chidi being hot is not the surprise. Hot Chidi is the surprise, and Hot Chidi is really more of a state of mind." It is hard to argue with that logic. In similar nature, another possible twist could be the lesson about martial arts Saitama learns in the conclusion of the martial arts tournament in One Punch Man’s second season which debuted this spring. The show is made by Madhouse and releases new episodes on Hulu.
The Cutest Couple That Never Was, the next award, was given to Hope and Josie from The CW’s Legacies . The Cutest Couple award went to Syd and Elena from Netflix’s One day at a Time . TV Guide championed two LGBTQ couples for these awards. I’m going to agree with Syd and Elena, but I think the Cutest Couple That Never Was might have been Maeve and Otis from Sex Education .
Overall, I think the list did a decent job of picking out superlatives for the 2019 season of TV. I believe some good shows were underrepresented on the list, but there are only so many awards one can give.