Top 10 Shows of 2022

The Obamas in a movie theater. Photo courtesy of Pete Souza: Flickr

The 2022 year is coming to an end, and with it another great year of television and cinema. Of the many shows released this year, some stood out above the others. Here are 10 to binge this winter break. 

10. Andor (2022)

Watch on: Hulu, Disney+

The series Andor is a part of the Star Wars franchise. It follows characters during the formation of the Rebel alliance opposing the Galactic Empire. The show is set five years before the events of Rogue One and A New Hope

The Star Wars show is being praised for taking the franchise in a new direction. It’s one of the highest grossing film collections of all time, and has had massive impacts on popular culture for decades. Each scene continues the Star Wars streak of incredible effects and settings.

9. Severance (2022)

Watch on: Apple TV

 Severance is a new science fiction-psychological thriller. An employee of Lumon Industries agrees to a program in which his memories of life and work are separated from each other. He begins to discover secrets and conspiracy from the two separate lives.

It was in the top-three most streamed during the summer. The mind-bending and intriguing plot has drawn in viewers, evident with a 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The visually stunning cinematography, and the feeling of suspense keeps viewers coming back.

8. Heartstopper (2022)

Watch on: Netflix

Heartstopper is a show about young love that stole the hearts of viewers earlier this year. It became widely popular on social media, with fans of the graphic novels excited about the live action TV adaptation. 

Nearly 24 million hours were streamed during a short period of time in the Spring and Heartstopper was constantly trending on Twitter and Instagram. It mostly follows the friendship and budding love between two British school boys, Charlie and Nick. Heartstopper is a heartwarming change of pace from the toxic and intense themes of other teenage love stories.

7. The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power (2022)

Watch on: Amazon Prime

The Rings of Power is a prequel to The Lord of the Rings franchise. The Lord of The Rings is based off of one of the best-selling books ever, and the movies have made billions of dollars in the box office. The Rings of Power is one of the most watched series that Prime Videos has ever produced. During the first few days after its release, it was watched for nearly two billion minutes. 

The events of the show take place long before Frodo and Bilbo exist. The show dives into the creation of the rings of power, alliances, the falling of kingdoms, and the rise of Sauron. As with all other Lord of the Rings movies, the characters and scenery is fantastically beautiful.

6. The Bear (2022)

Watch on: Hulu

The Bear is known as the hit of the summer, with a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. It is the most watched half-hour show that Hulu has ever had. 

The performances on the show have come across as excellent and genuine. Viewers love the fast-paced and immersive atmosphere. This critically acclaimed show follows a young, high-class chef as he moves back to Chicago to take over his family’s sandwich shop after the suicide of his brother.

5. Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story (2022)

Watch on: Netflix

The Jeffrey Dahmer Story hit record breaking streams this fall, and created a media frenzy. It has over 700 million hours viewed and is the third most popular English show on Netflix of all time. 

The show follows the real life story of a string of the murders by serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer and demonstrates how he became one of the most notorious murderers in American history.  Each episode is full of horror and suspense, paired with the curiosity of discovering the secrets behind Jeffrey Dahmer.

4. Ozark (2017-2022)

Watch on: Netflix

Ozark’s fourth and final season was released between January and April of 2022. The show racked up over 2.6 billion minutes of views, just during a one week period in the Spring. Ozark was also ranked number one in the Nielsen Top 10. 

The show has been described as incredible and as in “a class of its own, and its plot has been compared to the insanely popular Breaking Bad. The Byrde family moves to the Lake of the Ozarks region to set up a large money laundering scheme, and become involved with criminals. The intense and intriguing plot keeps viewers on the edge of their seats, ready for every next episode.

3. Wednesday (2022)

Watch on: Netflix

Wednesday is a newly released, but instantly popular, comedy-horror. Even though this show came out recently, it has shattered view records with over a billion hours viewed within the first month. The Addams Family has long been popular, around for nearly a century, and is combined with modern ideas and popular actors like Jenna Ortega. 

In this series, student Wednesday Addams is sent to Nevermore Academy to find a school more suited to her outcast nature. Upon arrival, she attempts to solve a murder mystery with her psychic powers. This well-done depiction of the classic Addams family in a new environment pushed it to status as a “top show.”

2. Euphoria (2019-2022)

Watch on: HBO, Hulu

Euphoria is another show that was insanely popular over 2022. It was HBO’s most popular show in over 18 years. The second season came out at the beginning of the year, and instantly became huge in pop culture. The popularity of the show inspired trends throughout TikTok and other media. 

Euphoria follows a group of high school students as they experience hardships from love, addiction, sex, and much more. The exceptionally emotional storyline and acting pull together the fast-paced destructive themes.

1. Stranger Things (2016-2022)

Watch on: Netflix

Stranger Things took the world by storm in 2016 and has never let up. The latest season came out in two parts throughout 2022. The creators of Stranger Things, the Duffer Brothers, are originally from Durham and attended Jordan High School. While watching, stay on the lookout for unique Durham references.

The supernatural-drama show follows a group of kids in the 1980’s as they discover government secrets and unexplainable forces. Each season follows a different horror to fight against. Widely regarded as one of the most popular current TV shows, Stranger Things was a fresh idea with 80’s nostalgia, great plot, and incredible acting for lovable characters.

Honorable mentions: Abbott Elementary, Better Call Saul, Bridgerton

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