Clockwise from Top Left: What We Do in the Shadows, Never Have I Ever, Better Call Saul, How To with John Wilson (CREDIT: YouTube Screenshots)

Last year, I decided to rank as many TV shows as I felt like recognizing in my year-end list, and that worked out so well that I decided to do it again for 2020. So welcome to my ranking of the 67 Best TV Shows of 2020! Not every show is accompanied by a blurb, just the ones that I felt like I really needed to say something about.

I worked with a self-imposed rule that I had to have watched at least 50% of a show’s 2020 output for it to be eligible, but there were some shows that I’ve only just begun to watch that I wanted to recognize as well, so they’ve got their own Honorable Mention section. And there were also some shows that aired relatively few episodes in 2020 to the point that I didn’t think they should be eligible either, so they’ve also got an Honorable Mention section. And then there’s one more show that’s managed to establish its very own Honorable Mention section, and that’s where we start.

Honorable Mention: Schitt’s Creek Edition
I started watching the Emmy-sweeping Schitt’s Creek back in the spring, and I’ve made it up to Season 4 (out of 6), so I’ve yet to see any of its 2020 episodes, but I imagine that if I had, it would’ve made it somewhere on the rankings.

I Watched Less Than 50% of These Shows
The Great (Hulu)
Marvel’s 616 (Disney+)
I May Destroy You (HBO)
Medical Police (Netflix)
The Queen’s Gambit (Netflix)
Ted Lasso (Apple TV)
Utopia (Amazon Prime)
Woke (Hulu)

Achievement in Only Airing a Small Portion of Their Episodes in 2020
Evil (CBS)
Fresh Off the Boat (ABC)
The Good Place (NBC)

The Top 67
67. grown-ish (Freefrom)
66. Nancy Drew (The CW)
65. Riverdale (The CW)
64. His Dark Materials (HBO)
63. Fargo (FX)
62. The Last O.G. (TBS)
61. The Twilight Zone (CBS All Access)
60. The New Pope (HBO)
59. Match Game (ABC)
58. Solar Opposites (Hulu): A goofy lark from Rick and Morty co-creator Justin Roiland about an extraterrestrial “family” bumbling around on Earth, sitcom-style.
57. Normal People (Hulu)
56. Mike Tyson Mysteries (Adult Swim)
55. Three Busy Debras (Adult Swim): Sandy Honig, Mitra Jouhari, and Alyssa Stonoha serve out suburban satire on Adult Swim.
54. Whose Line is it Anyway? (The CW): Wayne, Colin, Ryan, and company are still delivering inspired improv madness after all these years.
53. American Housewife (ABC)
52. The Goldbergs (ABC)
51. Muppets Now (Disney+): Finally we’ve figured out how to adapt Jim Henson’s creations to a new digital home base.
51. The Unicorn (CBS)
50. RuPaul’s Drag Race (VH1)
49. Full Frontal with Samantha Bee (TBS)
48. The Conners (ABC)
47. black-ish (ABC)
46. Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC)
45. Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (ABC)
44. Aunty Donna’s Big Ol’ House of Fun (Netflix): A trio of Australian dudes burst on the scene with their high-energy sitcom/sketch hybrid.
43. B Positive (CBS): The Annaleigh Ashford star-defining role we’ve all been waiting for.
42. Young Sheldon (CBS)
41. Stargirl (The CW)
40. Devs (FX on Hulu): Mostly for the Nick Offerman beard.
39. McMillion$ (HBO): I prefer my crime documentaries to be a hoot.
38. Better Things (FX)
37. The Eric Andre Show (Adult Swim)
36. Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist (NBC): Wonderfully well-grounded for a show whose hook is people spontaneously bursting into song.
35. Superstore (NBC)
34. Wilmore (Peacock): The first great talk show explicitly designed for the pandemic era.
33. Sex Education (Netflix)
32. Jeopardy! (Syndicated)
31. Dicktown (FXX): John Hodgman and David Rees drive around and solve mysteries (part of the anthology series Cake).
30. The Good Fight (CBS All Access)
29. Bob’s Burgers (FOX)
28. The Mandalorian (Disney+)
27. mixed-ish (ABC)
26. BoJack Horseman (Netflix)
25. Big Mouth (Netflix)
24. PEN15 (Hulu)
23. Rick and Morty (Adult Swim)
22. The Good Lord Bird (Showtime): If the real John Brown weren’t really as out-of-his-mind as Ethan Hawke plays him, television would have had to invent him.
21. The Masked Singer (FOX)
20. A.P. Bio (Peacock)
19. Earth to Ned (Disney+): Featuring puppetry from the Jim Henson Company, an alien sets out to conquer Earth, but instead decides that he likes celebrities too much and would rather host a talk show. Major Jiminy Glick vibes, minus the cluelessness.
18. American Dad! (TBS)
17. Unorthodox (Netflix)
16. Search Party (HBO Max): A generational satire for the ages heads to court.
15. Dispatches From Elsewhere (AMC): Jason Segel and his team concoct a game that reaches out of the TV and into our hearts and minds.
14. Mrs. America (FX on Hulu)
13. Last Week Tonight (HBO)
12. Saved by the Bell (Peacock): The only show in 2020 that dared to have a character named “Joyce Whitelady.”
11. The Baby-Sitters Club (Netflix): You can learn a lot about people by watching how they look after their charges. It can also warm your heart to no end.
10. Joe Pera Talks with You (Adult Swim): Still the gentlest, most lovely oddity on TV.
9. The Plot Against America (HBO): Demagoguery takes its toll on the homefront.
8. Beef House (Adult Swim): Tim and Eric and friends finally deliver the beef house-set sitcom we’ve all been waiting for.
7. Animaniacs (Hulu): Those Warners have still got it!
6. The Last Dance (ESPN): I grew up in the 90s. I didn’t realize until after the fact how lucky I was to be living in the midst of a dynasty as singularly compelling as MJ and the Bulls.
5. Never Have I Ever (Netflix): The latest entrant in the All-Time Coming-of-Age Pantheon.
4. How To with John Wilson (HBO): New York guy with camera offers advice via comedic documentary; his visual wit is preternaturally on point.
3. Holey Moley (ABC): If we could have just a fraction of the fun that Rob Riggle and Joe Tessitore have commentating on mini-golf, we would be so blessed.
T1. Better Call Saul (AMC)
T1. What We Do in the Shadows (FX): There were two shows in 2020 that satisfied me to no end as I watched them and as I continued to think about them afterward, so ultimately I had to declare a tie! Saul Goodman’s story is indeed all good, man – so thoroughly compelling and multi-layered! And boy oh boy, those vampire roommates in Staten Island … they were mighty fine company like nobody’s business. Here’s to all the TV friends we’ve made along the way!