ILX's Best Television of 2020 Poll / VOTING AND CAMPAIGNING THREAD / Voting Ends After January 29, 2021

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Here is a link to the complete list of this year's nominated shows and YouTubes:
Nominate the Best TV/Web/Streaming Series of 2020 - Nominations Closing January 7
also here: https://pastebin.com/xfL6NjPk

Here's the 2019 winners:
Top 77 Television and Streaming Video Series of 2019

Fans of last year's poll will be happy to hear that Moka is back on board again to do images for the roll-out.

You can vote for as many as 25 shows but I AM ENCOURAGING YOU TO SUBMIT A BALLOT EVEN IF YOU’RE ONLY VOTING FOR THREE OR FOUR SHOWS… or even just one! We got over 50 votes for this poll in 2019 and, given our collective obsessive pandemic watch habits, I think we should be able to represent an even broader slice of the ILX audience. Can we get to 100 ballots? Lurkers are welcome!

I wanted to set this poll up so that both people who only watched a little television as well as massive media nerds like myself could have equal opportunity to play, so here is how voting will work:

If you want an unranked ballot, please note that when you submit it and I’ll give every show you nominate 8 points.

If you want a ranked ballot, please note that when you submit it and, regardless of how many shows you vote for, here’s how your ballot will be scored:

  • Your #1 show gets 15 points.
  • Your #2 show gets 15 points.
  • Your #3 show gets 10 points.
  • Your #4 show gets 10 points.
  • Your #5 show gets 10 points.
  • Your #6 to #10 shows get 5 points apiece.
  • Your #11 to #20 shows get 3 points apiece.
  • Your #21 to #25 shows get 1 point apiece.
In either case, if you list more than 25 shows on your ballot, I’ll ignore everything after 25.

And just to keep things interesting and to better measure our general enthusiasm for a show, 5 extra bonus points will be awarded for every five votes (ranked or unranked) for a nominee.

As much as humanly possible, please make your vote pertains only to seasons and episodes that were released in 2020.

OUR FIRST SIDE POLL PREMIERING THIS YEAR: It's not required to vote, but along with your poll vote, feel free to submit an unranked list of the five television or streaming series you liked best and saw for the first time this year that were NOT released in 2020 and we'll do a round-up of those as well.

Send your ballots to forksclovetofu at gmail.com

Voting ends on MIDNIGHT (US EST) on Friday, January 29 / Saturday, January 30. I'll aim to post the winners in the first week or two of February. In the meantime, please use this thread to ask questions and campaign on the shows you think deserve the win and I'll use it to drum up voters.

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Sunday, 10 January 2021 16:03 (two weeks ago) link

Guess I need to start watching some tv!

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Sunday, 10 January 2021 16:11 (two weeks ago) link

Great...my 2019 ballot of four has exploded to eight this year as I continue to catch up with the world.

clemenza, Sunday, 10 January 2021 16:16 (two weeks ago) link

Amazed I was able to stretch my ballot out to ten (I usually don't like to vote in anything polls that where I can't list at least ten things), but maybe I shouldn't be: I probably watched more new TV this year than any year in my adult life. I ranked my ballot, though in truth it was more like I had three shows I really loved, a sentimental vote, and then five more shows that I reasonably enjoyed, randomly ordered. Anyway, excited for this.

Langdon Alger Stole the Highlights (cryptosicko), Sunday, 10 January 2021 18:08 (two weeks ago) link

Yes, I know that 3 + 1 + 5 does not equal 10. I should have said six more shows that I reasonably enjoyed. Basically wanted to post to say that I voted anyway.

Langdon Alger Stole the Highlights (cryptosicko), Sunday, 10 January 2021 18:10 (two weeks ago) link

bumping for anyone who might've missed this over the weekend.

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Monday, 11 January 2021 16:03 (two weeks ago) link

Also NB as I just got a ballot in with this question: if you do not specify if you want a ranked or unranked ballot, I'll treat it as unranked.

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 12 January 2021 15:00 (one week ago) link

missed the other thread and this til now. ill submit a ballot.

a nice controlled drift (Spottie), Thursday, 14 January 2021 23:00 (one week ago) link

three submitted so far.... 97 to go? Can i get some campaigners and some more voting commitments please?

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Friday, 15 January 2021 03:33 (one week ago) link

I'll definitely be voting but expect to watch maybe one or two more shows on the list before voting

Vinnie, Friday, 15 January 2021 04:09 (one week ago) link

I'll be voting, forks, no worries.

Looks like I'm gonna be the filling in a missile sandwich! (Old Lunch), Friday, 15 January 2021 04:45 (one week ago) link

i'm gonna assume "The Kingdom (Netflix)" refers to "Kingdom" the Korean zombie drama and not some other show about a kingdom. will vote!

Roz, Friday, 15 January 2021 05:22 (one week ago) link

yeah, season 2 was 2020 for Kingdom... which i thought was THE Kingdom but i'm wrong

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Friday, 15 January 2021 05:27 (one week ago) link

I’ll be voting, but will be down to the wire! A lot of interesting shows nominated that I want to check out (going alphabetically I’m at “c”).

Also: I wish #1 was worth like 3x the points because The Boys is that good.

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Friday, 15 January 2021 05:43 (one week ago) link

Kingdom stole its The from What We Do In Shadows

shivers me timber (sic), Friday, 15 January 2021 08:49 (one week ago) link

lol

I'll 100% be voting in this

groovypanda, Friday, 15 January 2021 11:29 (one week ago) link

I will certainly vote! Still time to watch a couple more shows before then.

For anyone who hasn't watched America's only journalist yet, please check out any All Gas No Brakes video!

tangenttangent, Sunday, 17 January 2021 01:19 (one week ago) link

Shit, nobody nominated Future Man season 3!

Guayaquil (eephus!), Monday, 18 January 2021 16:49 (one week ago) link

No nominations for Love Life or Emily in Paris surprised me! I didn't love either, but might throw them on my ballot as write-ins if that's allowed because they still provided necessary escapism.

tangenttangent, Monday, 18 January 2021 18:45 (one week ago) link

anything that came out with at least three devoted 2020 episodes that didn't make last year's 77 is fair game but bear in mind that you're likely to be a minority voter.

i'd settle for ANY voters! Only 4 so far. Is the dream of 100 lost? How about 50?

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Monday, 18 January 2021 19:22 (one week ago) link

my votes are as mighty as ten mens.

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Monday, 18 January 2021 19:49 (one week ago) link

I forgot to nominate Westworld also. I mean, the show is not very good anymore but I still enjoy on an ooh shiny level

Vinnie, Monday, 18 January 2021 23:47 (one week ago) link

Because 2020 was roughly the length of seven normal years, I'd totally forgotten that Dispatches from Elsewhere was released last year (mostly pre-pandemic). They turfed out pretty hard with the ending but a lot of it was good.

Looks like I'm gonna be the filling in a missile sandwich! (Old Lunch), Tuesday, 19 January 2021 00:30 (six days ago) link

oh god i really need to do a better job of checking this website, i missed nominations entirely D:

Kompakt Total Landscaping (Will M.), Tuesday, 19 January 2021 17:36 (six days ago) link

you're fine and welcome will

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 19 January 2021 20:22 (six days ago) link

(also i voted!)

didn't really feel like shouting into the write-in void but philosophytube had another year of good videos!

Kompakt Total Landscaping (Will M.), Tuesday, 19 January 2021 21:03 (six days ago) link

Shit, nobody nominated Future Man season 3!

That was only last year!?!?

Stoop Crone (Trayce), Tuesday, 19 January 2021 21:35 (six days ago) link

My ranked ballot's ready - do you want it numbered or unnumbered forks?

groovypanda, Wednesday, 20 January 2021 08:16 (five days ago) link

Numbered is good

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 20 January 2021 13:52 (five days ago) link

Ta, voted

groovypanda, Wednesday, 20 January 2021 14:56 (five days ago) link

nine ballots! why not take this inauguration day and think about television? i know i am!

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 20 January 2021 16:04 (five days ago) link

Just caught up on S3 of Corporate (the first episode of which was so, so good). Any other recommendations? There's a ton on this list I haven't heard of and I'm keen to fit a couple more things on my ballot. Dark comedies or chilling dramas especially welcome.

For my part, I'd suggest Dead to Me to anyone who didn't watch, or hasn't at all. Just a two-season investment and it's a great blend of introspective dialogue and kind of hysterical plot devices. Plus, Linda Cardellini is just the best.

tangenttangent, Wednesday, 20 January 2021 20:34 (five days ago) link

Love her in Freaks and Geeks and Mad Men, will have to look into that.

clemenza, Wednesday, 20 January 2021 20:41 (five days ago) link

tangent, you need to watch the dress up gang
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IuePaFHcVFc

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 20 January 2021 20:42 (five days ago) link

oh wow totally forgot about dead to me s2

boz conspiracy by toby hus (voodoo chili), Wednesday, 20 January 2021 22:11 (five days ago) link

Ranking is tricky this year. Some great shows had really off seasons (looking at you Noah Hawley grrr). Some shows I bet I'm the only person who votes for like Picard lol.

Stoop Crone (Trayce), Thursday, 21 January 2021 03:34 (four days ago) link

that's ten ballots. why not put yours in the post this morning!

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 21 January 2021 06:15 (four days ago) link

Putting together my ballot now (but probably not sending for another week). I like fork's ranking system because I thought two shows last year were excellent, three shows very good, and then a bunch of other stuff ok

surprisingly, the side poll is quite difficult to narrow down to 5!

Vinnie, Thursday, 21 January 2021 06:21 (four days ago) link

fyi the predominant feeling I get when I vote in these polls is that I watch too much fucking TV

Vinnie, Thursday, 21 January 2021 06:22 (four days ago) link

dude, it was a pandemic year

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 21 January 2021 06:28 (four days ago) link

tangent, you need to watch the dress up gang

Already on it from one of your former recommendations! Need more dark comedy recommendations - I'm currently watching nothing!

tangenttangent, Thursday, 21 January 2021 21:09 (four days ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gA0Td89Xf7E

Lavator Shemmelpennick, Thursday, 21 January 2021 21:16 (four days ago) link

dress up gang gonna be top 3-5 range for me for sure.

a nice controlled drift (Spottie), Thursday, 21 January 2021 21:41 (four days ago) link

i forget if you saw Brockmire? That's as dark as it gets. No baseball knowledge necessary.

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 21 January 2021 22:21 (four days ago) link

Guess I know what I’m watching tonight

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Thursday, 21 January 2021 22:22 (four days ago) link

"comedy" shows that I watched from 2020 that I will rep for: All Gas No Brakes, Aunty Donna, Brockmire, Close Enough, Corporate, Desus and Mero, Dream Corp LLC, Dress Up Gang, Forky Asks a Question, Ghosts, High Maintenance, How To with John Wilson, Kim's Convenience, Last Week Tonight, Looney Tunes Cartoons, Mandy, Mythic Quest: Raven's Banquet, PEN15, Ramy, Rick and Morty, Search Party, Staged, Ted Lasso, Three Busy Debras, What We Do in Shadows, Wonderful World of Mickey Mouse, Work in Progress

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 21 January 2021 22:40 (four days ago) link

the cream of those would be AGNB, Brockmire, Corporate, D&M, Dress Up Gang, High Maintenance, How To, Looney Tunes, PEN15, Ramy, Staged, Ted Lasso, What We Do in Shadows, Wonderful World of Mickey Mouse, Work in Progress.

Brockmire, Corporate, Ramy and Work in Progress are all incredible and have dark, dark hearts.

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 21 January 2021 22:42 (four days ago) link

Thank you for the fine-tuned list! Lots of those on mine already but I'll see what I can get through before then. I watched the first season of Brockmire on your mentioning it, but didn't return for whatever reason, though I liked it enough (and baseball is the best). I will get around to it, though probably not before voting.

tangenttangent, Thursday, 21 January 2021 23:59 (four days ago) link

I probably don't need to do this here, but I just want to take a moment to rep for Action Button. Tim Rogers has been grinding his idiosyncratic critical lens for 20 years, and if you look through that lens, you will see an Aleph-like kaleidoscopic view of the history of video games. If you're put off by the length of his videos, a stranger on Youtube has kindly excerpted 8 minutes of him talking about Dark Souls, which I think is a useful microcosm of His Whole Deal:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e1cLzU2U5Nk

american primitive stylophone (zchyrs), Friday, 22 January 2021 01:15 (three days ago) link

Which is to say nothing of his poignant-yet-ironic personal digressions, his being born stupid and never dying hungry, and so forth

american primitive stylophone (zchyrs), Friday, 22 January 2021 01:20 (three days ago) link

his entire project is fascinating to me

karl...arlk...rlka...lkar..., Friday, 22 January 2021 03:38 (three days ago) link

15 votes now! It's a very mannered collection thus far and could definitely use your voice to even out some of the current peaks and valleys... so vote why dontcha? That way when we run the poll winners you'll have a right to complain when a youtube you've never heard of wins.

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Friday, 22 January 2021 16:34 (three days ago) link

Submitted! Having now actually pored over the list, I realize I haven't seen hardly any 2020 shows (which is in keeping with my general tendency of experiencing media a minimum of 3-5 years after everyone else). At the very least, I need to get on Work in Progress after realizing that I know someone in the cast.

Vladislav Bibidonurtmi (Old Lunch), Friday, 22 January 2021 16:52 (three days ago) link

it's among my fave things from last year for sure so yeah, watch it! and thanks for putting in a ballot!

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Friday, 22 January 2021 17:16 (three days ago) link

even out some of the current peaks and valleys

Only part I disagree with. Everyone should vote but also they should vote for the very unexpected current #1* that me and at least one other voter put high on the list because that would rule

*I don't KNOW know it's #1, but in my heart, I believe

Kompakt Total Landscaping (Will M.), Friday, 22 January 2021 18:18 (three days ago) link

heh, i appreciate your passion but my enjoyment in this poll comes from a clearer awareness of what the board as a whole has been watching and enjoying this year, which is why I would like EVERYONE to vote. We all had a shitty covid year to lesser or greater extent and at least 95% of us spent it watching television. So let's talk about it!

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Friday, 22 January 2021 19:02 (three days ago) link

gonna vote next week after finishing the new pope (which is so so good)

voodoo chili, Friday, 22 January 2021 19:03 (three days ago) link

i've avoided New Pope till now; i was literally just reading a description of the first season that caught my eye. Two of the only things i genuinely don't care about are the hierarchies of the catholic church and the british aristocracy. We have similar tastes VC; do you think i'd dig it?

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Friday, 22 January 2021 19:08 (three days ago) link

oh don't get me wrong -- i want everyone to vote too! i just want them all to agree with me

Kompakt Total Landscaping (Will M.), Friday, 22 January 2021 19:27 (three days ago) link

xp

trust me, i have no particular affinity for papal palace intrigue haha, but the show makes you care, mostly because the character of voiello is so enmeshed in vatican politics and he's such a fascinating and watchable figure. the show also portrays the vatican as a arcane enclave of weirdos, whose backward prejudices and petty grievances have a massive affect on the beliefs and happiness of millions worldwide.

the young/new pope is gloriously unsubtle, hammering home the conflict between the sacred and profane with hilarious absurdity. beautifully shot in ways that intentionally evokes the renaissance-era artwork that adorns the vatican walls. one of the unique elements is how it undercuts moments of true beauty with broad humor, and it exists in a heightened magical realism plane with lots of symbolism and some truly bizarre left-field elements. (there are also subtle hints in the new pope that the show might take place in the future)

forks, i think it might be a bit on the all-over-the-place side for your tastes. if you don't like the first few episodes of young pope (at least watch until THAT needle drop before his first homily to the cardinals, which i think is in episode 5, though you'll probably be able to figure out if the show is for you before then), then it's just not for you.

i think it is certainly a show for bradnelson lol

voodoo chili, Friday, 22 January 2021 19:41 (three days ago) link

okay, will dip my beak in at some point. thanks for taking the time to game out your thoughts!

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Friday, 22 January 2021 19:42 (three days ago) link

ha no prob. weird that there's no thread for it, gonna fix that now.

voodoo chili, Friday, 22 January 2021 19:45 (three days ago) link

i loved season 1 still need to watch season 2

a nice controlled drift (Spottie), Friday, 22 January 2021 19:47 (three days ago) link

If it were possible to send in a bottom three that would lose those shows five points each and FP those that nominated them then Id do that and it would be dracula, three times

Qanondorf (darraghmac), Friday, 22 January 2021 23:15 (three days ago) link

lol, i'll note that if it places

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Saturday, 23 January 2021 00:06 (two days ago) link

but vote anyway!

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Saturday, 23 January 2021 00:08 (two days ago) link

I have that as my #1

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Saturday, 23 January 2021 00:09 (two days ago) link

Second ep of Dracula was great, third would have been good if they’d done a fourth that went into a sexy sci-fi future without making any other changes

shivers me timber (sic), Saturday, 23 January 2021 00:15 (two days ago) link

Second ep of Dracula was great, third would have been good if they’d done a fourth that went into a sexy sci-fi future without making any other changes

shivers me timber (sic), Saturday, 23 January 2021 00:21 (two days ago) link

thanks, PHONE

shivers me timber (sic), Saturday, 23 January 2021 00:22 (two days ago) link

great post vc! I really liked both The Young Pope and The New Pope

Dan S, Saturday, 23 January 2021 00:24 (two days ago) link

I've actually watched enough telly this year to submit something approaching a worthwhile ballot. Will get on it.

Hard agree with how bad Dracula was. Dreadful bollocks.

Vanishing Point (Chinaski), Saturday, 23 January 2021 11:58 (two days ago) link

tick.jpg

Qanondorf (darraghmac), Saturday, 23 January 2021 12:33 (two days ago) link

Voted, thanks forks. I started a thread about my number 1 show, I May Destroy You, and I wrote about it there.

I liked xyzzzz__’s conclusion on it, bolded part is it in a nutshell.

I think I liked that it resisted any kind of takeaway. There was some painful processing of experience, but ultimately stuff got done -- that she needed her rapist to take away her writing block I realise quite a brutal expression of what it is to do stuff, sometimes -- life goes on and we keep muddling through the disaster.

scampish inquisition (gyac), Saturday, 23 January 2021 12:36 (two days ago) link

A reminder that the second season of The Umbrella Academy came out last year and you should all vote for it, or watch it then vote for it.

Andrew Farrell, Saturday, 23 January 2021 13:11 (two days ago) link

ballot sent

that's not my post, Saturday, 23 January 2021 15:50 (two days ago) link

I voted. 19 shows on my list.

mike t-diva, Saturday, 23 January 2021 16:40 (two days ago) link

21 ballots! Why not get yours done over this weekend? Anywhere from three to twenty-five shows is valid!

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Saturday, 23 January 2021 18:38 (two days ago) link

Just watched the first episode of Work in Progress - aaaahh it's so good! Exactly what I was looking for. Thanks for flagging that up, forks.

tangenttangent, Sunday, 24 January 2021 01:34 (yesterday) link

I'm glad to hear that! FWIW it holds up well for the whole season and is likely in my top 15.

the serious avant-garde universalist right now (forksclovetofu), Sunday, 24 January 2021 03:26 (yesterday) link

k sent my ballot. we just started the Crown and it's unlikely I'm gonna get to any other shows from last year. excited to see the results!

Vinnie, Sunday, 24 January 2021 04:09 (yesterday) link


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