1. The Good Wife
Don’t you love it when the writers of a great television show have a long-term plan? For most of 2013, The Good Wife began introducing characters (Robyn Burdine, Clarke Hayden) and storylines (Diane’s judgeship, David Lee’s emergence) that didn’t seem to be tied together. It was as if they were casting off in many different directions and then suddenly, every little domino aligned and fell into place in a hyper-emotional, multi-episode run that saw Alicia, Cary, Robyn and Clarke branch off to form one firm and Diane return to Lockhart/ Gardner to right the ship alongside the seriously pissed off and betrayed Will, David and Kalinda. It was an absolute masterstroke from the best show on television.

There are few things worse than when a procedural decides to focus too much attention on personal life storylines. Too much character development can be the death of shows like this, but The Good Wife has always found ways to move both the characters themselves and the weekly cases forward, intersecting the two at the most convenient and inconvenient moments to prevent the show from ever getting stagnant or boring. This past year took that process to an entirely new level of greatness and offered up a few brilliant, ripped from the headlines cases involving Internet freedom, collective responses to terrorism and more.

If you’re not watching The Good Wife right now, you’re quietly missing one of the greatest network television drama runs in the history of the entire medium. Start catching up, it’s not too late.

Here are a list of shows that just missed the cut: Parenthood, Spartacus: War Of The Damned, Game Of Thrones, The Americans and Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

You can check out some of this year’s other picks by TV Blend’s fine staff of writers, here.

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