This year set a record for the number of scripted series on TV, but as Part 1 of our Top 10 New Shows of 2016 list makes HD-clear to both supporters and skeptics of this small-screen surge, the true name of the game in this Peak TV era is quality, not quantity. Deadline’s annual list reveals freshmen series from a variety of platforms that were nothing if not of the highest of the former.
Of course, for all the great new shows, there were a cavalry of veterans across broadcast, cable and the streaming services that saw some of their strongest seasons yet. FX’s extraordinary The Americans is just getting better as the Cold War heats up on the Emmy-nominated spy drama. Refreshingly, Amazon’s Transparent, Starz’s Power, CBS’ Blue Bloods, Netflix’s House Of Cards and the CW’s grittier-than-ever Arrow were also in top form in 2016. So to were Audience’s Kingdom, harder hitting, figuratively and literally, than ever; AMC’s Halt And Catch Fire; NBC’s The Carmichael Show; and Season 3 of Black Mirror on Netflix, which expanded its own reflective horizons into the torn attractions of a technology-obsessed society.
As for our newbies list, check out above as we reveal No. 10 through No. 6 in the rankings, then come back Thursday for Part 2 to find out who claims the top spot. We’d love to know who you think will be and who should be in the upper echelon in Part 2.