My Favorite TV Shows of 2020 (Part 1): Comedies & Competition Shows

by Keridwyn Deller

I’m sliding into early February to share with you some TV shows (& a few Movies) I watched in 2020. This is “Part 1: Comedies and Competition Shows.” (To be clear, these are shows I personally WATCHED in 2020 that I recommend.)

Some of these titles might feel familiar and some might be new to you! Since I haven’t linked to streaming platforms, you can use justwatch.com to find where they are streaming. The majority of these shows are on Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video, and Disney+.

COMEDIES (or at least made ME laugh)

Flo and Joan. I want everyone to watch this comedy special! They’re goofy and witty and playful and sometimes acerbic. Comedy song writers. Like Garfunkle and Oats or Flight of the Concords, but different because they are different people. I’m already ready to rewatch this special. (It’s on Amazon Prime). It might be a bit over the top for some audiences (some adult content) but I’m guessing most of you will like it.

The Good Place. One of the best comedic shows ever! It took a few episodes for me to bite but this show gets better and better. Goofy, quirky, heartfelt, and a very satisfying series end. This show feels like a hug from a close friend.

Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist. Clever concept. Characters burst into (awesome) song and dance. The “tech” writing is bad but the character of Zoey’s neighbor Mo (played by Alex Newell) is SO good. Some tear-jerker moments but it still falls under comedy in my mind. I’ll likely go back and watch some of the group dance numbers again – a nice variety of cover songs and great choreography!

I’m Sorry. I share this show with a strong “not for the easily offended” disclaimer. I mean it! That said, I have rarely laughed out loud so much at a show. I had seen this show before but watched it again in 2020 (done via netflixparty/teleparty with a friend) and it was just as funny a second time. I’m wrecked that the third season was written and ready for production but was canceled due to Covid. Andrea Savage is one of the funniest people I have ever watched and the supporting cast is phenomenal. Hulu or Netflix would be smart to pick up season 3. But if you are offended by the show, you didn’t hear about it from me.

Palm Springs. A very funny and sweet movie. Rom Com with a focus on the Com.

The Great. This period piece (18th century Russia)’s tag line is “An occasionally true story.” I don’t usually like raunchy comedies but I like period pieces so I’m guessing that’s part of what swayed me on this one. Not for the easily offended.

Middleditch & Schwartz. Clever and unique long form improv show featuring two dudes. Self-referential. Wacky. Fast paced. I’m a big fan.

Some Good News. I sure was disappointed when this show was sold-and-then-pretty-much-cancelled. It’s likely the episodes don’t hold up now but they were really helpful for those of us who watched them while going through the early days of the Covid19 Pandemic. They came back for a 2020 Holiday special. I would totally forgive them for pausing for so long if they came back this year! 🙂

Dead to Me. Wow these ladies have great chemistry together. The writing, the timing, the weirdness of this show. I was sad when we ran out of episodes!

Upload. This was lighthearted, cute, and a cool concept. While I wasn’t super happy with how it ended (no spoilers, I promise), it was still a fun watch. I’d like a season 2!

Nate Bargatze, The Tennesee Kid. I remember liking this comedy special more than I expected to. I don’t remember details but I marked a star next to it in my journal which means I’m recommending it to you now. Maybe I’ll rewatch it and laugh all over again? 🙂

Douglas by Hannah Gadsby. Her work is amazing. Watch Nanette (her other special) first. It’s BEYOND comedy and she’s one of the best writer/performers of our time. I have watched Nanette twice and will likely watch both Nanette and Douglas again. WOW.

Noelle. This relatively new holiday movie was absolutely charming. I expected it to be bearable and was delighted. I am already planning on watching it again Dec 2021.

The Lovebirds. Cute and clever romcom movie. I liked it more than I thought I would. The actors were fun to watch together.

Frozen 2. Might be better than Frozen. There are two scenes in this movie I just adored and the rest of the movie was very good.

COMPETITION SHOWS

Sing On. Just pure, silly fun with pop and rock songs. If you like watching really good karaoke performers, this is a good show for you. No snarky judges, fun sportsmanship, some very talented singers. Fun escapism.

Win the Wilderness. I did not expect to get wrapped up in this show! BBC competition show with very little repetitive shots. Couples face Alaskan wilderness challenges – the prize is the deed to a beautiful house and property deep in Alaska (you FLY in to get there!). Loved the nature shots, the problem solving, and the personalities of the current owners and many of the contestants. It’s a very light watch for being a “wilderness competition show” – likely as it has UK not US origins.

Taskmaster. I rarely laugh so much at any show. Watch this on youtube (be sure to watch the UK version). I think the first few seasons are the best but I’m still making my way through the later seasons. Comedians compete in silly challenges. The co-hosts are hilarious, the challenges are goofy (and sometimes result in very clever solutions from the contestants). Super fun!

Making It! Oh boy, Nick Offerman & Amy Poehler are full of goofy dad jokes in this competition show for makers and crafters. The challenges are fun and the vibe is very Great British Bake Off but with glue guns instead of frosting. Some really awesome crafters are featured, including Jamie from Portland, OR who is part of the duo behind 20leagues.com. They make some of the cutest diorama kits for house plants EVER and I might have geeked out a bit when I met the two of them at a recent Urban Craft Uprising.

Great British Bake Off. You likely know it. You likely love it.

The Final Table. Supportive, interesting food challenge show. I would watch every season if they do more.

There you have it! I’ll be back in a future blog post with my favorite dramedies, dramas, and other categories.

I LOVE to chat and message about shared love of shows, so share what shows / movies YOU liked in 2020, which on my list resonated with you, or what you’re excited to check out. You can also connect w me at fb.com/keridwyn , twitter.com/keridwyn , or instagram.com/keridwyn.


If you’d like to check out my favorite fiction and non-fiction books (and audiobooks) from what I read in 2020, you can see my full post HERE.


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