[dropcap]A[/dropcap]s 2015 draws to a close, we put ten new shows to the vote to find the best new TV programme to come out of the past year. Four intrepid Boar TV writers go in-depth and put forward the case for their chosen show…
Not content with already ruling the box office, Marvel have continued to add to their Cinematic Universe on the small screen. This year Daredevil became the first in a line of Marvel Netflix series.
Daredevil, a fan favourite from the comics, hasn’t been on screen since Ben Affleck’s misguided take in 2003. British actor Charlie Cox takes on the role with a stellar performance, sure to delight fans and the uninitiated alike.
However, the revelation is Vincent D’Onofrio’s masterful turn as crime boss Wilson Fisk, a vicious yet sympathetic villain, given as much focus and background motivation as the heroes.
The series’ tone is darker than other Marvel media, both memorable in its own right and perfectly fitting with the gritty, more realistic source material. With a gripping, morally complex storyline in addition, there is no doubt that Daredevil is a clear contender for the best new series of 2015
As the popularity of instant streaming grows, it’s no surprise that Netflix original series are taking top place in the ‘Best of 2015’ rankings. Sense8 has been one of the best this year, with action-packed episodes perfectly designed to watch back-to-back.
Directed by the Wachowskis and J. Michael Straczynski, the show is a science fiction masterpiece following eight strangers from around the world who become psychically linked.
It’s refreshing to see a genre show that embraces such a diverse cast. In fact, its writers specifically set out to explore subjects that they felt were often side-lined in science fiction, such as race, gender, sexuality, and other questions of identity.
While there can be a danger with larger casts for some characters to be overshadowed by others, Sense8’s protagonists are so equally weighted that it’s almost impossible to pick a favourite! By exploring their individual life dramas alongside the overarching drama of becoming a ‘sensate’, the show makes sure that the audience is invested from the get-go.
Mr. Robot was perhaps the surprise hit of 2015.
The series can be described as a suspenseful and mind-boggling cyber-thriller with a dark and pessimistic attitude towards the internet and capitalism. It follows lonely and disturbed hacker Elliot Alderson (Rami Malek), who can only connect to people by hacking them.
He soon joins a team of hacktivists known as ‘fsociety’, who want to start a revolution by taking down one of the largest corporations in the world (dubbed ‘Evil Corp’).
The writing is smart, the cinematography is impressive, and the central premise of the show (which is slowly revealed as the series progresses) is full of exciting potential that will be explored in the second season. The show has also attracted praise for its realism, from its references to real life events (such as the Ashley Madison hacks and Bill Cosby revelations) to its realistic portrayal of hacking.
Master of None
Master of None may be the most confident comedy debut in years. Right off the bat, Aziz Ansari’s show appears extremely well directed, thoughtful, and most importantly, personal. Aziz plays Dev, a fictionalised version of himself, who spends a lot of the series simply living.
There’s a really authentic tone to Master of None, which is only enhanced by the fantastic inclusion of Ansari’s real life parents as Dev’s parents in the show.
Master of None’s overall charm comes from its relatability and easy-going, natural narrative. Every episode, the show deals with a different aspect of ‘being’ – whether it’s dealing with the idea of having kids; interacting with parents you don’t entirely understand; the world of dating; getting old; and, in ‘Indians on TV’, one of the season’s most biting episodes, institutional racism in Hollywood and television.
Calling a show like this realistic, hilarious and heartfelt, whilst true, feels like something of an understatement. All you have to know is that Master of None is well worth your time.
And the winner is…
Garnering 19% of the vote each, the dual winners of the prestigious title of Boar TV Best New Show of 2015 are Sense8 and Daredevil. If you haven’t seen them, get onto Netflix over Christmas and prepare to marathon; you’re in for a treat.
Bring on 2016!