“Separation Part II” | Madam Secretary
With the perfectly heartfelt premiere of Brooklyn Nine-Nine and The Good Place’s incredible return episode, TV’s a delightful place again that has me grinning from ear to ear. Last week’s show of choice, Outlander showed us the ramifications of Jamie’s actions and Brianna’s frustrations leaving us with another intriguing episode. But it was Sunday’s return episode of Madam Secretary that I can’t stop thinking about.
Madam Secretary is a special show, it’s the only drama that’s allowed to be 22 episodes long because it’s the one platform that highlights politics in the eyes of a character driven cast. And both “Separation” episodes did what TV at its best does — evokes something powerful by mirroring the world we live in today. Sometimes we need to escape the treacheries of the world with fiction and sometimes, we need fiction to scream about what’s happening because it’s crucial to bettering our lives. We can try to escape and disregard politics all we want, and I’m all for people stepping back if it’s too much to bear at times, but when children are separated from their families, our voices need to be heard. And the two-part story on Madam Secretary refused to stay silent.
For the past few years, this category’s been the most difficult — trying to pick through my favorites without too much repetition from past years and the desire to give other characters the opportunity to be on here as well. But my inability to choose could’ve been due to the fact that there just weren’t that many options in the first place. And this year’s special — in both the TV verse and cinematic. And these ten characters are ones I’m certain I could not love more even if I tried. Some old with exceptional growth and some new pushing me into a state of gratitude for just how great TV’s been this year.
For more end of the year reviews, check out our Top 10 Performers, 10 Relationships and 10 Episodes.
- Lucy Preston
I don’t think there’s ever been a character as adored as quickly as Timeless’ Lucy Preston. And season two pulled the darling historian through the darkest of revelations only to have her come out of it even more generous than before. Lucy’s heart is inexpressible –there hasn’t been a character like her in a while, and it’s been a stunning ride watching her continuously open her heart despite the fact that the one person she trusted most in her life turned out to be the villain in her story. Whether it was fighting alongside the women who were to be executed during the Salem Witch Trials, standing with Suffragette Alice Paul, or welcoming Jessica to the team despite her feelings for Wyatt — Lucy’s benevolence is selflessness in its most evident form. She is nobility personified, for even when she could be choosing for herself, fighting for her own future, the other person’s effect is always taken into deep consideration, too. But the thing I appreciate most about Lucy is that even with all the compassion running in her veins, she’s not one to allow anyone to take advantage of her — she understands that goodness and naiveté aren’t the same thing. She’s fought back when she needs to. She’s cried when she’s been in pain. She’s doubted. She’s believed. She’s gotten excited. She’s shown viewers a wide range of emotions authenticating the fact that women are beautifully complex. She’s many things, but above all, she’s a woman who’s walked through fire and instead of letting it burn her, she’s used it to fuel the good fight instead. She’s walked out with the flames as phoenix feathers — stronger, wiser, and even more compassionate than before.
“Global Relief” | Madam Secretary
It’s been another great week of television as Once Upon A Time kicked off with a phenomenal, character driven episode. When Calls the Heart wrapped up its fourth season with a sweet ending. The Americans messed with our emotions. Prison Break reunited the brothers in a tear-jerker scene. Brooklyn Nine Nine gave us the status of the precinct in what should have been a longer episode. Chicago P.D. featured great moments with Voight’s character. Black-ish gave us two back to back incredibly fun episodes. And Superstore made our shipper hearts soar in an unparalleled moment of sincerity between Amy and Jonah. (This was my second choice, by the way.) But once again, Madam Secretary is the show that has delivered a truly exquisite moment.
“Good Bones” | Madam Secretary
TV took a mini hiatus this week (or so it seems), but what we did see surprised us with a lot of fantastic moments. Once Upon A Time gave us a glimpse into Gideon’s past. When Calls the Heart delivered a letter we were impatiently waiting for. The Americans broke us with Gabriel’s character. Brooklyn Nine Nine delivered a hysterically fun spring premiere episode. And Prison Break kicked things into motion. But it was Madam Secretary that’s left me in complete and utter awe.
| April 24 – May 15 |
We’ll be diverting a bit from our usual finale roundup structure to dedicate the entire compilation of categories to CBS’ Madam Secretary — the season finale that has so far been my favorite. “Vartius” dealt with three significantly intricate matters with a kind of grace very few shows have mastered. Often times where there are too many stories told in one episode, it tends to get overwhelming, and that’s especially the case with finales wanting to wrap things up, but “Vartius” reached resolutions that’ll effortlessly and brilliantly bleed into season three.