First, let’s all take a moment and offer thanks. There was an era not too long ago where a list of 7 Great Episodes of Nerd Television would include zero superhero shows, because there were no superheroes on television.
Or if they did exist, they were mismanaged properties. Now, there is a plethora of television worth watching and worth geeking out about. Here is a quick list of episodes that are worth checking out in the last year. (And, because there is so much out there, I can’t watch everything, you all.)
[divider] 7 Great Episodes of Nerd Television in 2015 [/divider]
4722 Hours, Season 3, Episode 5 of Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD
The rest of the list from here will not be in necessarily best to worst order. But unequivocally, this episode was the best episode of nerd television in 2015. What sets it apart is how much is put on one character for most of the episode and then a seismic shift for a whole franchise in the last quarter of the episode.
And above all, it shows the world that all men should be aiming to be as good a human being as Fitz is. (We recapped and reviewed the episode here.)
All Star Team Up, Season 1, Episode 18 of The Flash
So, I am unashamedly a Marvel zombie. And after the experiment that is Gotham left me bitter on the inside, I was basically walking away from all DC properties until Zack Synder resigns or admits he is color blind and tone deaf. But I heard good things about The Flash and dove in this summer.
When I reached this point in my catch-up, I was reminded that DC does have the chance to tell some compelling, amazing stories. While Arrow has too much of a convoluted backstory for me to dig into, I knew enough to enjoy this team-up. (Writers: you want a great episode of mash-up? The big heroes get captured and the sidekicks of both series have to team-up and save the day!)
Grodd Lives, Season 1, Episode 21 of The Flash
Simply put, it is the most ridiculous idea to try and bring to the television screen: a terrifying telepathic giant ape. And they pull it off and then some. Seriously, sometimes when you swing for the fences, you clear the bases and this episode definitely did that.
JSS, Season 6, Episode 2 The Walking Dead
So, Ninja Carol. While the first half of the current season of The Walking Dead really struggled with pacing and storytelling issues, this episode was a standout and a great reminder of how great the show typically is. With Carol leading the way as a Velociraptor in Wolves’ clothing, she handles her business in ways that are remarkable. It pushes towards the Morgan-Rick-Carol conflict that looks to be an issue in the second half of the season and it reminds us of how far the groups have come. (Plus it has this weird nod to the fact that the world of X-Files and The Walking Dead may be the same! We recap and review the episode here.)
Cut Man, Season 1, Episode 2 of Daredevil
By the point this episode hits its peak, we have done all the niceties of introducing the world. The episode is a good episode but it is mainly here for one reason: the hallway fight. Watch in all its glory. Sometimes one scene is so transcendent that it deserves a place on a best-of list.
AKA Top Shelf Perverts, Season 1, Episode 7 of Jessica Jones
The show takes a slow walk from this point, but truly this episode is the show at the height of its storytelling. They manage to make Kilgrave into the most epic villain of the Marvel Universe thus far and the police station scene in this episode cements it.
The Good Man, Season 1, Episode 6 of Fear the Walking Dead
Okay, an editorial moment here. In general, we all love nerdy things and here on the site, we generally talk about the things we love. But the largest sense of relief and joy I felt all year was when the last episode of this series finished airing. I could not delete it fast enough from my DVR. And while it may not be as awful as I am making it out to be, there is no doubt that it was bad, bad television that sadly got great ratings. That is a horrible combination that we need to see end, and end quickly. For the love of all that is good about nerddom. (We review that specific episode here.)
Shows I regret not putting on here: Peggy Carter, which might have had the best short season of any nerd show. I don’t watch Game of Thrones or Doctor Who. I bailed out on Gotham. I wish I had more of Expanse under my belt because it seems promising. And I have yet to dive into the weird fantasy that is Amazon’s Man from High Castle.
That said, 2015 was an amazing year for nerd televise and I’m hopeful that 2016 will be even better!