Surprises, twists and upsets have made 2017 an emotional year. All that joy, sorrow and angst has translated to the small screen, where this year’s TV shows have tackled serious topics and stirred up something deep inside of viewers.
Stars like Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon graced the small screen to elucidate a tense story of domestic abuse and familial drama. A superhero show wrestled smartly with mental health issues. Our anxieties about brutal authoritarianism came to life onscreen. Big families had viewers in tears, and cassette-loving teenagers stoked parents’ fears.
Of course, television can be an escape too. The incomparable Julia Louis-Dreyfus continues to provide a laugh-out-loud diversion from real politics. Drew Barrymore brought new meaning to chewing scenery. And Aziz Ansari found even more ways to make heartbreak funny.
In the run-up to TIME’s Best TV Shows of 2017 So Far, weigh in on your favorites in the poll below. Here are your options: 13 Reasons Why, American Gods, Big Little Lies, Catastrophe, Crashing, Dear White People, Feud, Girls, The Good Fight, The Handmaid’s Tale, I Love Dick, The Leftovers, Legion, Master of None, Planet Earth II, Santa Clarita Diet, Shots Fired, This Is Us, The Young Pope and Veep.
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