Top 10 TV Shows of 2014 From Us Weekly: The Good Wife, True Detective, and More

Julianna Margulies
Check out Us Weekly's picks for the best TV shows of 2014, including The Good Wife, True Detective, Orange Is the New Black, and more! Jeffrey Neira/CBS via Getty Images


This year’s crop of new and returning TV shows was a rich one, with big-name stars, shocking plot twists, and some of the best storytelling ever seen on the small screen. Check out Us Weekly‘s picks for the top 10 must-watch series of 2014 below!

1. The Good Wife

Her soulmate, Will (Josh Charles): dead. Her newfound ambitions to be Chicago State Attorney: complicated. Through it all, Julianna Margulies towered as defiant lawyer Alicia, a hero whose conflicted emotions made for TV’s most credible — and scathing — power drama. (CBS)

2. Mad Men

In the ’60s throwback’s penultimate round, Don Draper (Jon Hamm) recalibrated his roles as adman and husband — to heartbreaking effect. One of the most impactful events: The ever-lost Don let go of would-be savior Megan (Jessica Pare). This spring, let’s hope Don ultimately does see that the best things in life are free. (AMC)

3. True Detective

Sinking into the mud as Louisiana bayou detectives Rust and Marty, Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson helped turn this serial-killer hunt into a soulful meditation on good vs. evil. Memorable well beyond its “Time is a flat circle” soliloquy. (HBO)

True Detective
HBO/Michele K. Short

4. Orange Is the New Black

Who didn’t shed a tear as flashbacks showed how homophobia incarnate separated Poussey (Samira Wiley) and her first love? Compelling character revelations lent this addictive tale of female inmates the shadings of a profound novel. (Netflix)

5. The Americans

Is posing as an American couple while spying for the USSR easy? Nyet! Which made watching this Cold War drama’s stars Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell navigate marriage, parent two kids and snuff out threats — as their feelings of guilt snowballed — an irresistibly tense trip. (FX)

6. Veep

No one sends up and takes down the political-blowhard crowd like this D.C.-set comedy. Julia Louis-Dreyfus was more painfully awkward than ever as foot-in-mouth vice president Selina Meyer, whose run for POTUS was LOL sublime. (HBO)

Veep
Paul Schiraldi/HBO

7. The Walking Dead

This year on As The Stomach Churns, zombie fighter Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and his friends faced cannibals, too. But the apocalypse thriller’s ensemble was shown with deeper dimension — especially Melissa McBride’s shrewd Carol and Emily Kinney‘s surprising Beth — leading to some, er, raw human moments. (AMC)

8. You’re the Worst

On this bold anti-romcom, fresh faces Chris Geere and Aya Cash scored as a pair of selfish snarks shocked to fall for each other. Their deep-down vulnerability made this offbeat new series both funny and poignant. (FX)

9. How to Get Away With Murder

Oscar nominee Viola Davis killed it as Annalise, a legal guru whose husband was murdered…by her or one of her five intriguing college proteges. That’s how to make a scintillating whodunit. (ABC)

How to Get Away with Murder
ABC/Mitchell Haaseth

10. Homeland

Taut chase scenes and dusty-rubble terrorist hits aside, the true fireworks here came compliments of star Claire Danes as CIA operative Carrie. She restored this drama’s heat with her turn from renegade hero to hardened CIA field operative (and disinterested mom). (Showtime)

HONORABLE MENTIONS

Fargo (FX), The Colbert Report (Comedy Central), Game of Thrones (HBO), The Comeback (HBO), Transparent (Amazon Prime)

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