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BEST 10. Nashville
The best new show of the fall season, boldly soapy, seamlessly musical.
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BEST 9. The Good Wife
Even with the frustrating Kalinda's-husband subplot (we're irritated because we care!), this is network drama's best show, with the best use of guest stars.
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BEST 8. Justified
The most hardboiled season yet, with an out-of-town hit-man giving Raylan his most formidable villain.
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BEST 7. Parks and Recreation
Beautifully unironic, carefully avoiding undue meanness, yet still gut-punchingly funny.
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BEST 6. The Colbert Report
The funniest and most devastating political humor in an election year.
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BEST 5. Mad Men
Unbuttoning in the 1960s, with characters taking trips both geographical and chemical, making risky business and personal decisions.
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BEST 4. Girls
The year's most impressive debut, and one of its most original sitcoms.
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BEST 3. Louie
Expanding sitcom conventions with storylines that allowed for dramatic moments, quiet moments, crazy moments, sometimes all in one episode (see: Parker Posey).
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BEST 2. Breaking Bad
The half-season that paid off on Vince Gilligan's original conceit: ''Mr. Chips will turn into Scarface.''
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BEST 1. Homeland
Super-tense, conventional-narrative-shattering, great acting from both Claire Danes and Damian Lewis.
NEXT: Ken picks the worst TV of 2012...
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WORST 5. Phillip Phillips wins American Idol
A fitting end to a lousy season; tedious judging, little suspense, a fine-grade sandpaper-voiced but unfortunately bland winner.
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WORST 4. House of Lies
How could a show with such a talented cast be so boring?
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WORST 3. Anger Management
Charlie Sheen makes a triumphant return to TV! Well, no, let's just make that a ''return to TV.''
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WORST 2. Animal Practice
Justin Kirk and Joanna Garcia-Swisher didn't deserve to be stuck in these tedious monkeyshines.
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WORST 1. Work It
Bosom Buddies without the fun — the year's most pointless new show.