10. Lost [Created by J.J. Abrams, Jeffrey Lieber and Damon Lindelof, ABC]
For a series known for posing more questions than answers, season four was especially gratifying. Lost
introduced the freighter enemies, revealed the identities of the
Oceanic Six and reached a creative pinnacle with Locke’s ‘moving’ of
the island and the heart-wrenching Desmond/Penny-centered episode “The
9. Project Runway [Eli Holzman, Bravo]
The premise is simple: Contestants
are given fashion-design challenges and are progressively eliminated by
a panel of judges, including host Heidi Klum. But the show that
popularized the phrase “make it work” provides strangely addictive and
guilt-free reality TV for fashionistas and frumps alike.
8. Doctor Who[Sydney Newman, BBC America/Sci-Fi]
version of the long-running British series considers itself with the
minimum amount of seriousness required to make the plotlines
nail-biting—it’s much more concerned with having a rollicking good time.
7. Pushing Daisies [Bryan Fuller, ABC]
Romantic whimsy, candy-colored sets
and Tim Burton-esque characters flourish in this razor-smart dramedy
from the creator of Wonderfalls. The cutesy storyline—about a couple in
love but unable to touch—is pure sugar, while the murder mystery plots
keep the toothache at bay.
6. The Daily Show [Madeleine Smithberg and Lizz Winstead, Comedy Central]
Jon Stewart and his brilliant gang of Emmy-winning writers shine
brightest when the stakes are highest—namely, in the midst of the
rapid-fire absurdities of election-year politics. Under Stewart’s wing,
co-stars John Oliver and Rob Riggle ably carry the torches of past
correspondents like Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell, delivering big
laughs and even bigger truths with their current-events comedy.