Royals, dragons, capes, and everything in between

December 25, 2022

From the most expensive series ever made to a psychological drama like no other, 2022 gave us plenty of televisual entertainment, which is great and all, but it doesn’t detract from the fact that the year has some serious explaining to do when it comes to the continued presence of the Kardashians and the Sussexes on our screens. Like, please make it stop?!

Fantasy IP spinoffs were in vogue this year, with Amazon spending over a billion bucks on The Rings of Power; while the British royals – both real and dramatised – refused to leave us alone.
Fantasy IP spinoffs were in vogue this year, with Amazon spending over a billion bucks on The Rings of Power; while the British royals – both real and dramatised – refused to leave us alone.

– Streaming continued to reign supreme in 2022, although it wasn’t all smooth sailing for the world’s biggest streamers. Netflix lost subscribers by the million before gaining them back by the million, while HBO Max started culling its catalogue for some reason following the WarnerMedia-Discovery Inc. merger. The serial offerings by streaming platforms, on the whole, continued to be massively popular with both viewers and critics, and the digital giants often emerged victorious at award shows with series like…

Royals, dragons, capes, and everything in between

– … Ted Lasso, the cheery optimism of which continued to be contagious.

– The darkly comic twists of The White Lotus, meanwhile, had us hooked.

– The exploits of the train wreck that is the Roy family made Succession as riveting as, well, a train wreck.

Severance was so terrific that it made other television series look bad in comparison, because if it IS possible to be this brilliant, then what is your excuse, RandomTVShow #7461283?

– The stroke of genius that was the streaming serialization of the Marvel Cinematic Universe helped keep Disney+ relevant, even as the MCU continued to run out of steam.

– We were patriotically obligated to praise Ms. Marvel and ignore the show’s mediocrity.

Amazon Prime Video proved that Jeffrey Bezos really has too much money by creating The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, the most expensive series ever made. Its budget, reportedly topping a billion dollars for a five-season production commitment, guaranteed to leave even the most ardent Tolkien fan wondering if there was maybe something wrong with how the world works.

– Flying lizards were all the rage as we returned to the Game of Thrones universe in the House of the Dragon prequel.

– The Star Wars spinoff Andor was a massive hit. Yes, something Star Wars related became popular. Shocking, we know.

– DC’s Arrowverse kept losing shows. Legends of Tomorrow and Batwoman both bid farewell, with The Flash set to follow suit next year. R.I.P. also to DC’s Stargirl; we barely knew ya.

– After testing our patience for three years, Stranger Things finally blessed us with nine new episodes.

Ozark sucker-punched us with a polarizing ending that was unsatisfyingly believable.

– The ending of Better Call Saul reminded us that we are still not over the ending of Breaking Bad.

– Steve Martin and Martin Short continued to amuse with another whodunit mystery in the parodic Only Murders in the Building.

Kumail Nanjiani welcomed us to Chippendales.

– After floundering in development hell for decades, The Sandman finally came to small screen life.

The Dropout confirmed that awful people can make interesting characters…

– …as did Dahmer, although in Dahmer’s case, maybe they shouldn’t.

The Crown returned with its weakest recasting to date and gave us its dullest season to date.

Harry and Meghan continued to desperately court publicity while going on and on about how much they resent the media attention.

And Just Like That… demonstrated that yes, it is indeed possible to make a show even lamer than Sex and the City.

- This year’s ceremony of [insert name of award show here] was the least watched broadcast in the show’s history.

The Kardashians returned with a new reality show as we lost all faith in humanity. Like, who is even watching this inanity and why?

Todd and Julie Chrisley served as a reminder that you should seriously do a better job covering up all your tax evasion. Chrisley Knows Best and Growing Up Chrisley were canned as the couple headed to jail.

Stephanie McMahon became the head of WWE, taking over responsibilities from her disgraced father, Vince.

– The variety special A Very Backstreet Holiday was pulled from schedule weeks before broadcast after very serious allegations were levied against a very problematic Backstreet Boy.

– In other news: et tu, Fred Savage? :(

– The Jimmys - i.e. Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel - swapped their late night shows and hosted each other’s programs as an April Fools’ Day prank, proving that April Fools’ pranks CAN actually be funny. Who knew?!

– Pretty much everyone left the cast of Saturday Night Live.

– Also, Trevor Noah left The Daily Show, so we can finally start watching The Daily Show again.

– And James Corden announced that he is going to step down as the host of The Late Late Show, as the world heaved a collective sigh of relief.

Royals, dragons, capes, and everything in between