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Bullz-Eye’s 2013 TV Power Rankings

11. New Girl

new_girl

If you like Zooey Deschanel, chances are you’ll love “New Girl.” The comedy series is so perfectly suited to the adorkable actress’ eccentric personality that it’s really fun watching her let loose with some of the zany stuff she’s asked to do. No matter how you feel about the recent will-they-won’t-they plotline between Jess and Nick, it’s hard to deny the fantastic chemistry between Deschanel and standout Jake Johnson, although all five main cast members form a pretty great team. Though the show hasn’t been quite as consistent in its sophomore season, it’s still one of the funniest comedies on TV, thanks to memorable bits like “Gave me cookie, got you cookie” and the return of the hilariously indecipherable True American drinking game. The show’s success relies more on these smaller moments than the episodes as a whole, and while that’s a dangerous tightrope to walk, there’s no point in changing a winning formula. – JZ

12. Parks and Recreation

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There are a number of reasons why “Parks and Recreation” belongs on the Power Rankings, but at the top of that list is the cast, which is arguably the best comedy ensemble on TV. Amy Poehler has transformed Leslie Knope from a Michael Scott wannabe into an incredibly loveable and realistic character capable of making us laugh and breaking out hearts in the same episode, and the actress has delivered such consistently great work that it’s hard to believe she still hasn’t won an Emmy for the role. It’s also no surprise that the show started to really hit its groove once Adam Scott and Rob Lowe joined the cast, although the latter hasn’t been quite as entertaining this season. Chris Pratt and Aubrey Plaza’s quirky relationship continues to earn big laughs, and in Ron Swanson, Nick Offerman has created a truly hilarious, one-of-a-kind TV personality. Even glorified background players Retta and Jim O’Heir have been upping their game this year, and with this much talent at their disposal, the writers have been having an absolute field day. – JZ

13. Arrested Development

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Throughout its all-too-brief three-season run on FOX, “Arrested Development” received more critical acclaim than any sitcom ought to be allowed to earn, but after sadly proving the theorem that rave reviews don’t always equal huge ratings, the series was given the heave-ho into oblivion. Except it wasn’t, as it turned out, since the show’s cast and creators desperately wanted to revisit the exceptionally dysfunctional Bluth family so badly that they managed to broker a deal with Netflix to produce a fourth season. While opinions have varied wildly between “it’s even better than before” and “it should’ve stayed dead,” we’re of the mind that, just as long as you keep your expectations realistic and remember that the only way to bring back the series was to adapt the show’s structure to accommodate the lower budget and insane scheduling of the different cast members, Season Four of “Arrested Development” has proven to be well worth the wait. There are countless callbacks to past episodes, lots of well-utilized guest stars, and at least as many laughs as before. Is it the same “Arrested Development” that you remember from FOX? Not completely. But it’s still pretty darned funny, and that’s all we really wanted, anyway. – WH

14. Sons of Anarchy

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The fifth season of FX’s insanely popular motorcycle drama wasn’t the show’s best year, but it did deliver some of the most harrowing and gut-wrenching moments to date, including the fiery death of Tig’s youngest daughter, and of course, the death-by-pipe sacrifice of fan favorite Opie. We’d be lying if we said that Ryan Hurst’s absence didn’t leave a gaping hole for the remainder of the season, but that was sort of the point, as it played a pivotal role in the way that Charlie Hunnam’s Jax evolved in his new position as club president. The addition of Jimmy Smits to the cast also added a nice dynamic to the Teller-Morrow family drama, and though Damon Pope didn’t prove to be nearly as menacing as expected, it was interesting watching SAMCRO deal with a different kind of threat for once. We still can’t believe that Ron Perlman’s Clay managed to make it out of yet another season alive, but let’s be honest, “Sons of Anarchy” wouldn’t be nearly as captivating without him. – JZ

15. Dexter

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Now in its eighth and final season, this unlikely drama about a “sympathetic” serial killer has been able to maintain its status as one of the best shows on television. Dexter (Michael C. Hall) has always tried to channel his impulse to kill towards “deserving” victims, but now things are much more complicated, as people close to him learned about his secret, leading to real collateral damage. Fans will soon find out who survives the final season. This is a great example of a show that never would have seen the light of day on network television. If you haven’t given it a try yet, put it in your queue and you won’t be disappointed.

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