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Stranger Things on TV and in the World

Ahhh...the beauty of being a kid on a bike unaccounted for and unsupervised for hours on end. If you grew up in the 80's, you have to check out Stranger Things on Netflix. The show is a scary good, fun watch. It feels like Steven Spielberg and Stephen King got together and made a Netflix baby. There are only eight episodes, so you won't have to reintroduce yourself to family members if you binge the entire series. Or you could watch with the whole family because it's not so scary it's overwhelming for the kiddies. After watching, Stranger Things jumped to #3 on the Best TV of 2016 on our Lists page.  Here are some other strange things going on in the world.

Stranger Things gave my wife nightmares, but so does her co-workers.

Stranger Things gave my wife nightmares, but so does her co-workers.

Cleanest Hoarders episode ever.

Cleanest Hoarders episode ever.

Black out for a while for only $28

Black out for a while for only $28

Sticking with the Moonshine theme...I'm closing out the Grind today with a new track from Brandy Clark titled "Drinkin' Smokin' Cheatin":

The 10 Best Shows on TV Right Now

In this era of "peak tv", viewers must be more selective of which shows they choose to give their time. In 2015, there were an estimated 412 scripted tv shows produced and over 1,000 reality and docuseries shown. That's over 1,400 shows to choose from in the past year alone.

The term itself "peak tv" indicates an eventual decline in the number of shows produced, however 2016 looks to continue the upward trend in production as more and more networks are hopping on the original content bandwagon.

The 10 Best Shows on TV Right Now

The 10 Best Shows on TV Right Now

I'm a snob when it comes to tv, and openly admit it to family and friends. Before I commit to a show, I usually listen to or read a review from a few critics I respect; guys like Alan Sepinwall at Hitfix TV, Chris Ryan and Andy Greenwald over at the Watch Podcast or Matt Zoller Seitz at Vulture.  I don't always agree with them, but our tastes are inline on most shows.

Here's my list of the 10 best shows airing on tv right now:

1. The Night Of (HBO)

In a day and age of shock first tv, HBO's The Night Of seems like a throwback to tv where the story is actually the star of the show. I've only seen the first episode, but I'm already hooked and haven't been this eager to see what happens next in a long time.

New episodes of The Night Of air every Sunday at 9PM, only on HBO.

2. Preacher (AMC)

Viewers never know what's going to happen next or what in the hell is going on most of the time, but the characters are so charismatic and so engaging to watch onscreen the plot becomes non-essential; which is really hard for a tv show to pull off.

New episodes air Sundays at 9/8c on AMC.

3. Full Frontal with Samantha Bee (Comedy Central)

Samantha Bee is proving on a weekly basis how stupid network executives are for not giving women an equal shot in late night time slots. She's the one filling the void Jon Stewart left and would be getting a lot more pub and kudos for it if she had a penis.

Watch Full Frontal with Samantha Bee Mondays at 10:30/ 9:30c on TBS!

4. Outcast (Cinemax)

Skip this one if you don't want to be creeped out of your mind. It's unsettling, often frustrating and sometimes 100% disgusting. But I find myself looking forward to seeing another episode from week to week. It's has the kid from Almost Famous chasing down demons in West Virginia. File under "watch" if you're a fan of the Walking Dead or were cheering for the kid from Almost Famous to get possessed instead of getting lucky.

Watch Outcast Fridays at 10PM/9C on Cinemax.

5. Ray Donovan (Showtime)

You'd think by now the Donovan family would visit a family counselor or something. To say they've had their "ups and downs" would be comparable to saying Sadaam Hussein was a "bad guy". It's obvious the writers are sitting down every offseason and saying, "Ok what are we going to put these people through this season?" I get it. That's the show. But Goddammit, Liev Schreiber is so talented and I just can't seem to ever tire of his impending spiral every season.

New episodes of Ray Donovan air Sundays at 9pm

6. Any Given Wednesday with Bill Simmons (HBO)

I've been a fan of the Bill Simmons podcasts for years. Now, he's trying to bring that same insightful and in-depth conversation to tv. It's still a work in progress, but it's interesting to watch and see if a conversation can be the star of a tv show in this day and age.

Episodes of Any Given Wednesday premiere (you guessed it) every Wednesday night on HBO

7. Roadies (Showtime)

To be honest, I don't know if this show is going to make it. It's everything you'd expect from Cameron Crowe...the good and the bad. I like the setting and the idea of a show about a group of roadies traveling along with a rock band. However, I'm already tiring of the over-glorification of all things that vagabond life entails. It's a wink and nod of a show where it's all going to be okey dokey by the end of the hour. I think I'm watching more out of a hope of a return to the glory days for Cameron Crowe and a like of the actors more than the actual product onscreen at this point.

Roadies, airing Sundays at 10PM ET/PT on SHOWTIME

8. The Tunnel (PBS)

I like a good, adult mystery show. This is the 2nd show of that type on this list, and would probably be higher if I didn't feel like I'd already seen it as The Bridge on FX or as the Danish/Swedish series Broen. It has good performances by Elise Wasserman and Karl Roebuck (AKA Stannis from that little show with dragons on HBO).

New episodes of The Tunnel premiere on Sundays on PBS

9. Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

I think it's already easy for people to take John Oliver for granted. From the first episode of Last Week Tonight, he's been excellent and consistent. Honestly, he should even be higher on this list. There's no let down from week to week and there's really no one else on tv who is doing what he's doing.

Last Week Tonight - every Sunday night on HBO

10. Hell on Wheels (AMC)

It's quite fitting that a show about the making of the railroad, Hell on Wheels, just keeps chugging along without hardly any fanfare or recognition. AMC hasn't done the show any favors by under promoting it, burying it on Saturday nights (where it's actually performed pretty nicely) or by stretching out this final season over two years.  It's been a quality, entertaining show since the first track was laid, and I've never understood why it never got more recognition.

Hell on Wheels, Saturday Nights on AMC

June TV Premiere Dates

I've noticed a weird transition in my life over the past few years when it comes to tv viewing. I watch way less tv now than I did five years ago.  The gluttony of content has only made me more picky when it comes to what I choose to invest my time in, and oftentimes that selectiveness has led me to turning off the tv completely.  I also find myself checking out of tv shows more quickly.  I tell myself I'll catch up on a show via streaming down the line.  But in the back of my mind, I know I never will.  There are too many good shows to waste my time wading through a show I'm not 100% invested in.  With that in mind, I've highlighted the premieres I will be watching in bold and italicized the shows I think I will check out at a future show.  Wink.  Nod. Suuure.

June TV Premiere Dates

Friday. June 3
10 p.m.: Outcast (Cinemax) - This show sits atop many critics list for best of summer tv fare.

Sunday, June 5
10 p.m.: Feed the Beast (AMC)

Monday, June 6
9 p.m.: Rizzoli & Isles (TNT), Devious Maids (Lifetime)
10 p.m.: UnREAL (Lifetime)

Tuesday, June 7
Casual (Hulu)
10 p.m.: Feed the Beast (AMC, timeslot premiere)

Thursday, June 9
10 p.m.: Ladylike (MTV)

Saturday, June 11
6 p.m.: O.J.: Made in America (ABC)
9 p.m.: Hell on Wheels (AMC)

10 p.m.: The American West (AMC)

Sunday, June 12
8 p.m.: Tony Awards (CBS)
9 p.m.: The Last Ship (TNT)
10 p.m.: Ride With Norman Reedus (AMC)

Monday, June 13
9 p.m.: Guilt (Freeform)
10 p.m.: BrainDead (CBS), Major Crimes (TNT), Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge (NBC)

Tuesday, June 14
6 p.m.: O.J.: Made in America (ESPN premiere)
9 p.m.: Animal Kingdom (TNT)
10 p.m.: Wrecked (TBS)

Thursday, June 16
9 p.m.: Aquarius (NBC)

Friday, June 17 
Orange Is the New Black (Netflix)

Sunday, June 19
10 p.m.: Murder in the First (TNT), The Jim Gaffigan Show (TV Land)

Monday, June 20
8 p.m.: The Fosters (Freeform)

Tuesday, June 21
8 p.m.: Pretty Little Liars (Freeform)
10 p.m. Person of Interest (CBS, series finale), Greenleaf (OWN), Queen of the South (USA)

Wednesday, June 22
8 p.m.: Big Brother (CBS)
10 p.m.: American Gothic (CBS)

Thursday, June 23
9 p.m.: Big Brother (CBS)
10 p.m. Rush Hour (CBS, season finale)

Sunday, June 26
8 p.m.: Big Brother (CBS), Ray Donovan (Showtime), Celebrity Family Feud (ABC)
9 p.m.: The 100,000 Pyramid (ABC)
10 p.m.: Roadies (Showtime), Match Game (ABC)
10:30 p.m.: Impastor (TV Land)

Tuesday, June 28
9 p.m.: Zoo (CBS), Dead of Summer (Freeform)

Wednesday, June 29
8 p.m.: Big Brother (CBS)

Thursday, June 30
10 p.m.: Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll (FX)