This holiday season I am thankful for many things in my life- my family, my friends, my cats, and most importantly, TV shows. Currently, I am obsessing over shows that are on air as well as some shows that are sadly no longer being broadcasted. If you are looking for something to binge watch over the Thanksgiving break, here are some of my (highly) recommended options

It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia
This show has been on for an outstanding 13 years and counting, beginning in 2005 and set to have a new season sometime in 2018. The show comes with the local appeal of taking place in Philadelphia, something that isn’t common among current network TV. The plot follows a group of insensitive, selfish friends as they run their Philadelphia bar, Paddy’s Pub, “run” being used loosely as they never do their job. Ever. The ‘gang’ as the show calls it features Charlie Day as the illiterate Charlie Kelly, Glenn Howerton as the self proclaimed ‘Golden God,’ Dennis Reynolds, Rob McElhenney as the self proclaimed ‘Sherriff of Paddy’s Pub,’ Mac McDonald, and Kaitlin Olson as the heavily narcissistic twin sister of Dennis, Dee Reynolds. The show also stars Danny DeVito as the disgusting (morally and physically) father of the Reynolds twins. McElhenney, Day, and Howerton also work as the writers and producers of the show.

Hannibal
This show aired on NBC from 2013-2015 before being cancelled due to low ratings. Created by Bryan Fuller and based on the famous book trilogy by Thomas Harris. The main focus of the show is Hannibal Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen) who is a cannibalistic serial killer. The show takes place before and during the events of the book The Red Dragon, meaning the audience gets to see Hannibal before being caught by police as he works as a physiatrist. Another character borrowed from the book is the teacher and FBI profiler Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) who has a special talent for emphasizing with the killers the FBI hunts. What makes this show so interesting is how it diverges from the plot of the books/movies and instead digs deeper into the characterization of Will and Hannibal, as well as offering a lot more insight into their relationship, which is basically non-existent in the books and movies. One of the most compelling aspects of the whole series though is the absolutely breathtaking, and sometimes disturbing, visuals. The show has a very artistic feel and incorporates a large among of symbolism and metaphors, the camera work and plot lines often serving as a device to compare light and dark. Despite being cancelled, Bryan Fuller has recently been fueling and nearly confirming rumors that a 4th season is “on the docket” as he tweeted a few weeks ago.

Shameless
This show may be one of Showtime’s biggest hits yet, with a very large following which continues to grow each year. The basis of the show is a highly dysfunctional family in the South Side of Chicago being (terribly) raised by a neglectful, alcoholic father played by William H. Macy. The Gallagher family has been gracing television screens since 2011 and has continued to do so for 8 seasons, even recently being confirmed for a 9th season. The show has a character for every fan to love and/or relate to. There is the oldest sister, Fiona (Emmy Rossum) then Lip (Jeremy Allen White), Ian (Cameron Monoghan), Carl (Ethan Cutofsky), Debbie (Emma Kenney), and Liam (Johnny Bennett). Another family featured on the show that stole many fans hearts, including my own, is the Milkovich family focusing mainly on Mickey Milkovich (Noel Fisher) and Mandy Milkovich (Emma Greenwell). The Milkovich family, like the Gallagher family, is stuck with an alcoholic and severely abusive father. Despite all of these very dark themes the show still manages to be labeled not only as a drama, but also as a dark comedy with a gritty and realistic feel to it.

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