My Top 5 for 2012

By David Knox on December 11, 2012 / Filed Under News 40

This morning on ABC Radio National Breakfast with Fran Kelly I revealed my Top 5 shows for the year.

It was another tough choice and I decided to make life easier by focussing purely on content that made its debut in 2012.

Honourable mentions go to: Puberty Blues, Howzat, Call the Midwife, Jack Irish, Smash, Episodes, Hit & Miss and Game Change.

Drum roll….

5. The Newsroom
4. The Voice
3. Redfern Now
2. Mabo
1. Homeland.


  1. Alicia B December 12, 2012 at 9:20 am -

    The Newsroom, Smash, Once Upon a Time, Hart of Dixie and of course my fave – I Will Survive! I know people will hammer me for last show – but don’t bother – personal taste!

  2. Les Solomon December 12, 2012 at 8:49 am -

    Like “Homeland” but agree with whoever said its become too much like “24” . The second series is a lot less believable than the first. I also question how you could leave off season 5 of “Mad Men” and arent we allowed to say season 3 of “Downton Abbey” because it was so much better than season two, just because Seven takes too long to show it. I find almost frightening so many people list “Revenge”. !!!???
    And seriously, “Redfern Now”is very very contrived.But as you say, its personal opinion. i couldnt rate anything Australian in a top 5 I am afraid
    5 Dexter
    4 Homeland
    3.Downton Abbey
    2. Mad Men
    1. Breaking Bad.

  3. TasTVcameraman December 12, 2012 at 7:44 am -

    My top 5 would be :
    1 Homeland
    2 Revenge
    3 Suits
    4 Jack Irish
    5 Neighbours – for consistency over many years
    Honourable mentions go to Howzat, Puberty Blues, White Collar, Suits, Downton Abbey and I think the best 20 minutes of any TV show made in Australia, the last 20 minutes of Winners and Losers the final episode. Good action and suspense. The rest of the series was OK !

  4. Dayman December 12, 2012 at 4:12 am -

    Best Shows

    Game of Thrones
    The Walking Dead
    Breaking Bad

    Can’t even rate which is better than the other.

    Best new shows.
    Moone Boy

    Plenty of other good shows, but yeah.

  5. MuchoTB December 12, 2012 at 1:13 am -

    I enjoy CW series. These are my top 5 this year

    5. Homeland
    4. Revenge
    3. The Vampire Diaries
    2. Teen Wolf
    1. Dexter

    I also enjoyed Arrow, Elementary, and Supernatural. Hooray for genre shows

  6. Guy December 12, 2012 at 1:00 am -

    For me the top 5 of the year for me were

    5.The Voice
    4. Foxtel’s Olympic Coverage
    3. Sydney Swans win AFL GF
    2. Revenge
    1. Homeland

    Honourable mentions to Amazing Race Australia, The X Factor, Once Upon a Time, The Newsroom, Puberty Blues, Smash, Revolution and Redfern Now.

    Personally think Hozat and Beaconsfield were overrated dramas.

  7. aplourey December 12, 2012 at 1:00 am -

    Oh and Rake and Sam Simmon’s Problems would be two runners up.

  8. aplourey December 12, 2012 at 12:58 am -

    My top 5 in no particular order:
    – The Newsroom
    – Homeland
    – Treme
    – Revenge
    – Mrs. Brown’s Boys (surprised it’s not on more people’s lists!)

  9. qwerty December 12, 2012 at 12:19 am -

    gotta say crazycatlady is not alone. love aboriginal programming but Redfern Now was overrated, inconsistantly written, and episodes were hit and miss.

  10. David Knox December 11, 2012 at 9:20 pm -

    Yes The Hour second season screens over summer.

  11. dan December 11, 2012 at 9:05 pm -

    Channel 9 Olympic coverage
    Everybody dance now
    The shire
    Being. Lara bingle

    Just joking her are my Top 5 shows in order
    5 foxtels Olympic coverage
    4 master chef
    3 big brother
    2 the biggest loser
    1 puberty blues

  12. crazycatlady December 11, 2012 at 8:59 pm -

    Thanks for sharing your choices, David. Definitely agree with Homeland!

    Am I the only one who thinks Redfern Now is a bit over-rated? I watched it and I enjoyed it, but I found it a bit cliched. I had really high expectations for this show…I thought we were going to get an Aboriginal version of ‘The Street’, but when I watched it I didn’t feel like I was watching any ‘real’ people (in the way I did with The Street, or shows like Friday Night Lights), and the representation of Redfern didn’t really seem authentic either. But that could just be me. Good to hear they got a second season.

    Also, I agree about The Hour, what a great show! Does anyone know if series 2 will be airing on ABC in the new year? It has already started airing in the UK.

  13. tvf December 11, 2012 at 6:35 pm -

    I didn’t mind beaconsfield either. Lachy hulme was great in both beaconsfield, howzat kerry packers war and offspring.

  14. tvf December 11, 2012 at 6:31 pm -

    When sticking to debut series of 2012 I only have a top three and they were howzat kerry packers war, the voice and homeland. Would like to see the newsroom. I didn’t mind watching mabo or a moody christmas but wouldn’t say they were a fav.

  15. David Knox December 11, 2012 at 5:18 pm -

    It’s only one opinion. GoT was on my list last year, but again I have stuck to content that debuted in 2012.

  16. dshan December 11, 2012 at 5:12 pm -

    Absolutely no ‘reality’ or ‘talent’ show deserves a spot in the top 25 let alone the top 5.

    1. Game of Thrones
    2. Mad Men/Boardwalk Empire
    3. Rake
    4. Hit & Miss
    5. A Moody Christmas

  17. David Knox December 11, 2012 at 5:11 pm -

    Homeland debuted in Australia in 2012. I’m an Aussie blog.

    This rule also precluded a lot of other content.

  18. The Other Adam December 11, 2012 at 3:43 pm -

    My personal top 5 are:

    Moody Christmas
    Breaking Bad
    Puberty Blues
    Big Brother

    Was a good year for TV this year, especially for Australian produced shows. I found my list really easy to make based on the shows we watched religiously

  19. Dodge December 11, 2012 at 3:40 pm -

    Mabo and Redfern Now PC? I’m pretty sure the only reason David chose them is because they’re good.

  20. jonasboi December 11, 2012 at 2:56 pm -

    Mine would have to be

    5 – teen wolf
    4 – revolution
    4 – grimm
    3 – the walking dead
    2 – the newsroom
    1 – falling skies

    besides, neighbours and spicks and specks I only watch foxtel.

  21. Karlos December 11, 2012 at 2:50 pm -

    David – Didn’t Homeland make it’s debut in 2011?

  22. Andy G December 11, 2012 at 2:42 pm -

    Breaking Bad
    Mad Men
    Game of Thrones
    The Hour (a better version of the Newsroom without the Preachyness)

    Homeland for the first 9 eps of the season before it turned into 24 (The CIA all of a sudden stopped bugging Brody’s phone the moment he starts talking to Abu Nazir… Really??)

    Parks and Rec
    30 Rock (sad to see you go)
    House of Lies (Entourage with an IQ)


    New Girl
    Happy Endings
    Modern Family

  23. jimbo k December 11, 2012 at 2:12 pm -

    you missed out on the great series of The Bridge. Although it wasn’t mainstream enough, you did make great reviews of it. Nice show tucked away on sbs2.

    Also, i wish Rake was there. It was in it’s second season though

  24. par3182 December 11, 2012 at 2:02 pm -

    I’m assuming you missed season 5 of Mad Men since no-one in their right mind would have it on a list lower than The Newsroom, The Voice, Episodes or the execrable Smash.

  25. vitieddie December 11, 2012 at 1:57 pm -

    Snog Marry Avoid?

  26. bettestreep2008 December 11, 2012 at 1:32 pm -

    Ugh – The Voice?

    How about shows that have been consistently excellent this year?

    The Good Wife
    Modern Family

    and out of left field – Into the Abyss and the Death Row documentaries by Werner Herzog.

  27. fairdinkum December 11, 2012 at 1:23 pm -

    Mabo and Redfern Now, very PC.
    Did not debut this year, but Downton Abbey the best of 2012.

  28. J Bar December 11, 2012 at 1:12 pm -

    Can’t see how The Voice can be mentioned in that company but anyway it’s your choice.

  29. mellie0105 December 11, 2012 at 12:49 pm -

    You left Smash off the top 5? But you love Smash, David! Definitely all for Homeland and as a huge West Wing fan, love The Newsroom too. I would round it out with Scandal, OUAT and Howzat.

  30. David Knox December 11, 2012 at 12:25 pm -

    Steviep: Well I used to swing on them in the kitchen as a kid if that’s what you mean…

  31. ryaneco December 11, 2012 at 12:20 pm -

    Oh tough one my top 5 of the year in no particular order.

    – Newsroom
    – Girls
    – Puberty Blues
    – Offspring
    – Dexter
    – Homeland

    Ok….I can’t choose 5 because I loved all 6 of the above that I couldn’t possibly cut one.

  32. steviep December 11, 2012 at 12:15 pm -

    You have always been a sucker for rotating chairs

  33. Maev....Sydney December 11, 2012 at 12:06 pm -

    For me…Redfern Now and Call the Midwife…both excellent!

  34. Chris N. December 11, 2012 at 11:46 am -

    Woo! Homeland is my favourite show as well. It’s so good and it doesn’t get enough love.

  35. Mark W December 11, 2012 at 11:35 am -

    Love Homeland..but I also love Dexter , Modern Family and Smash.

  36. Mac December 11, 2012 at 11:18 am -

    The Newsroom was my #1, but I loathed The Voice. Respect for some diverse taste there, Mr. K!

  37. Dodge December 11, 2012 at 11:03 am -

    Good choices David. Can’t fault any of them.

  38. sjp December 11, 2012 at 10:45 am -

    Are you talking about Australian 2012 debuts? Because Homeland started in 2011 in the US.

  39. jezza December 11, 2012 at 10:43 am -

    Nwesroom > the voice

  40. Graham December 11, 2012 at 10:39 am -

    Interesting list David – plenty of food for thought there.
    I strongly agree with both ‘Homeland’ (as top choice) and ‘The Newsroom’ – despite some reservations I have, there’s nothing else like it on TV, and it boasts incredibly strong performances from all the main cast members. ‘Howzat’ would definitely be in my own top five, along with ‘The Hour’ (technically it might have been made in 2011 but I think it premiered in Australia this year) and, perhaps, ‘Media Watch’ for being so consistently informative And entertaining.

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