If the weather was as warm where you were as it was in New York over the long weekend, you probably didn’t spend much of the past few days watching TV. But Memorial Day isn’t just the beginning of the summer season — it also marks the end of May sweeps month, the official close of the television season, when network programming packs it in until September and we’re forced to make do with generally crappy filler, reruns, and the occasional fantastic basic or premium cable series. What this means (besides that we should all step away from the screen and get some sun) is that it’s time to crown our favorite TV shows of the 2011-12 season. Our picks, featuring the astute input of Flavorwire’s editorial staff, are after the jump.
“It’s not exactly a bold, brave stance to pronounce Community one of the best shows on television, particularly with the high emotions swirling around Harmon-firing-gate,” writes film editor Jason Bailey, who joins just about every Flavorwire staffer (and, in case you haven’t noticed, the entire Internet) in supporting the series. “And the few grumblers who have loudly objected that, hey, the show was a little uneven this season are right (and that’s an if that I’m not quite ready to cede), then it should be noted that Community on an off night is better than just about any other television comedy at its best. And when Community is on… well, you end up with episodes like ‘Pillows and Blankets (Part 2)’ (aka the Ken Burns episode), ‘Regional Holiday Music’ (their killer Glee parody), or ‘Remedial Chaos Theory’ (the ‘darkest timeline’ episode). When that last show rolled its closing credits, this viewer felt something I hadn’t felt since the first time I saw the ‘Contest’ episode of Seinfeld: that I’d just seen perfect television comedy.”
Sadly, we won’t find out whether the show will become trapped in its own “darkest timeline” until September — but the news that writer Megan Ganz will be back does offer a shred of hope.