10. Orange Is the New Black, ''It Was the Change''
When a storm short-circuited Litchfield, we were reminded of what these often sympathetic inmates are capable of: murder, betrayal, getting high on nutmeg. As Red and Vee went to war, it also made us wonder: If we’re rooting for them to do evil, what does that say about us? —Melissa Maerz
9. How to Get Away With Murder, ''Let's Get to Scooping''
For a show that revels in plot twists and lascivious behavior, the most exhilarating moment so far has been a dialogue-free scene in which Viola Davis’ Annalise removed her wig and makeup to confront her philandering husband. It both elevated the series and changed the face of TV. —Tim Stack
8. The Good Wife, ''All Tapped Out''
The NSA wiretapping of the various Lockhart/Florrick/Gardner/Agos permutations finally came to light—and Alicia worked the wire to her benefit, ensnaring her would-be ensnarers. Yet, through all the high-tech high jinks, the lingering grief over Will grounded this episode in a reality few shows can tap into. —Meeta Agrawal
7. Silicon Valley, ''Optimal Tip-to-Tip Efficiency''
Forget Stephen Hawking: The Pied Piper boys figured out the theory of everything penile. The finale turned a goofy masturbation gag into the season’s dramatic climax. It’s hard to explain more here, not only because they used real math equations but also because it was just a bunch of dick jokes. So let’s just give them a hand for pulling it off. —Ray Rahman
6. Transparent, ''Best New Girl''
Creator Jill Soloway says there are no good or bad guys on Transparent. Which is what makes the series so gripping and this ep revelatory. With flashbacks to Maura’s first trans conference, Josh’s babysitter trauma, and Shelly’s bad marriage, it was a rare moment of empathy for everyone. —Melissa Maerz
5. Homeland, ''There's Something Else Going On''
New characters and locales have let Carrie get back to what she does best: hunting Big Bads. Yet it was her most human moment—trying to save her mentor—that brought this hour to its knees. It was classic Homeland—and we mean that, once again, in a good way. —Meeta Agrawal
4. Sherlock, ''The Sign of Three''
Only Sherlock could shift from detective thriller to rom-com to deliver one of its strongest outings. Sherlock giving a rambling, beautiful speech at John’s wedding encapsulated why this version of Holmes is unique—and why Benedict Cumberbatch is a star. —James Hibberd
3. Game of Thrones, ''The Lion and the Rose''
Joffrey’s demise was shocking in both setting (another wedding?) and execution (you almost felt sorry for the gagging psychopath). But it was the despot’s last moments of bullying behavior and a sequence of unexpected character pairings (Brienne and Cersei! Jaime and Loras!) that made this ep reign. —James Hibberd
2. Fargo, ''The Crocodile's Dilemma''
It didn’t take long for the FX adaptation to find its own homespun voice. Happened in the first episode—right from the man-in-underpants-pops-out-of-trunk start. And when the mysterious hitman (Billy Bob Thornton) calmly invoked dragons to scare away the cop (Colin Hanks), we were chilled and thrilled. —Dan Snierson
1. True Detective, ''The Secret Fate of All Life''
No, this isn’t the one with the tracking shot. This is the awesome one that came after, a showcase for the HBO psychodrama’s many virtues. The terrifying war-flick staging of the assault on Reggie Ledoux’s shack-of-horrors backwoods compound was masterful. The collaborative dual narration was never more intricate. And then there was quantum nihilist Rust Cohle’s signature ”Time is a flat circle” soliloquy. ”The Secret Fate of All Life” was True Detective at its most well-rounded. —Jeff Jensen