Best TV Shows of 2020

With 2020 coming to a close, the Chronicle Staff is looking back at the best, most binge-able television released over this past year. Without further ado, here are some staff picks for the best shows of the year.

Ratched Netflix poster

Abby Waechter | Staff Writer

Evan Romansky’s original Netflix Series Ratched imagines the complex backstory of Nurse Ratched, a character long understood only in the context of Ken Kesey’s 1962 novel (and later, the 1975 film): One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. The eight part series dives into the nurse’s ominous past by immediately flinging watchers directly into the chaotic world of the psychiatric hospital she works at, filled with gruesome institutional truths and LGBTQ-coded undertones. Ratched grabs watchers from the first episode, and guides them through the chaos while keeping the audience on their toes throughout the whole series, making them wonder what’s next at every turn.

The Queen’s Gambit Netflix poster

Shravani Page | Staff Writer

Netflix’s The Queen’s Gambit was quick to capture the attention of various audiences; it’s now the most-watched miniseries ever, a No. 1 hit for the platform in 63 countries. It’s one to remember too, telling the story of an orphan named Beth who rises to become a worldwide chess champion as she battles grief and drug addiction. What made this show really one of my favorites this year is how The Queen’s Gambit exemplifies Beth’s courage. She faced a world of criticism, whether it was for her looks, her age, the fact she was female, etc, and still pushed onwards. It showed the evolution of a powerful woman — not necessarily a role model — who loved to learn, play, and win.

The Mandalorian Official poster

Riley Johansen | Editor In Chief

The Mandalorian has quickly become a current fan favorite of the Star Wars fanbase, and it is clear to see why. Rife with lore from both past movies and another beloved Star Wars television series, The Clone Wars, The Mandalorian weaves together the history and characters that viewers know and love with new favorites all in one action-packed storyline. The show exemplifies the best of the franchise’s artful and exciting storytelling while creating entertainment for fans with all levels of Star Wars knowledge and dedication to find truly binge-worthy.

Grand Army Netflix poster

Della Johnson | Staff Writer

Netflix’s Grand Army is heartbreaking. The show focuses in on the neighborhood of Brooklyn in New York, with a group of diverse teenagers attending a private school where they face the harsh realities of an intolerant world. As the storyline plays out, it proves to be anything but cheesy, and almost teleports the watcher into the shoes of the youth on the screen. As it becomes more and more popular, more and more people become emotionally invested in the actions of characters—which is probably why there’s such a call on Twitter for a season two.