With the increasing popularity of such media streaming powerhouses as Netflix and Amazon Prime, the world of series and sitcoms has expanded far beyond the relatively short list of cable stations and major networks. Here is a list of some of the TV shows that offered the best content in 2019 and what content creators can learn from them:
A vast number of people around the world were already fans of the BBC series Fleabag long before it won “Best Comedy Series” and “Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series” awards as this year’s Primetime Emmys ceremony. When you also remember that Emmy-winning actress and Fleabag star Phoebe Waller-Bridge was also the writer of the first season of Killing Eve, it makes sense why Fleabag would be considered one of the best TV shows of 2019.
Takeaway Lesson: Phoebe’s lead character in Fleabag is known for interacting directly with the audience throughout each episode by frequently breaking the fourth wall. This allows viewers to stay engaged from start to finish to be able to catch each “break” as if it is a secret line of communication. The best content creators find clever and creative ways to interact with their own audience members through asking open-ended questions to bring them into the conversation, changing the point-of-view (i.e. 1st person, 2nd person, etc.) or even sharing content (i.e. social media posts, pictures, testimonials, etc.) from the audience within their work.
This is Us
Fans were hooked on This is Us from the very first episode when the Big Three connection of the Pearson family was first revealed. They were glued to the edge of their seats when the question, “How did Jack die?” made headlines. Even long after the answer was revealed, the This is Us writers and emotion-stirring performances continue to create new questions to keep fans and critics tuned in and coming back for more.
Takeaway Lesson: There are always more questions left on the table to answer. The concept of finding out how Jack Pearson died could have been solved within one feature film. However, Fogelman knew that the best way to keep audiences coming back for more was to create more relevant yet unanswered questions along the way. The best content creators never feel as if there is a shortage of unturned stones within their respective markets and neither should you.
There was not very much revealed about The Mandalorian before it premiered in November. One could argue that three main points stood out: (1) It was a live-action Star Wars series instead of an animated cartoon, (2) it focused on the fan favorite bounty hunters that have never really gotten the onscreen recognition that they deserved and (3) Jon Favreau played an instrumental role behind the scenes. Fortunately, those three points were more than enough to convince a massive crowd of fans to tune in along with an appearance of a now-viral baby that spoke volumes of its overall success.
Takeaway Lesson: The supporting parts of one story can become the main parts of their own story. Pay close attention to what your audience emphasizes perhaps in their comments and feedback. You may see an opportunity to shine a spotlight on an element within your content that you assumed worked best in the background.
Former Disney child star Zendaya was able to completely shed that rose-colored, G-rated image with the debut of the HBO series Euphoria. Quite a few series and movies have highlighted the coming-of-age experiences of high school students diving into friendships, trauma, love, drugs and sex. However, very few of crossed into the territory embraced by this series. Perhaps that is why it is featured on the list of the best content in 2019.
Takeaway Lesson: Some of the best content creation tips will encourage you to never be afraid to embrace the dark side of reality. An alarming number of content creators seem caught up on the rose-colored side of life and refuse to embrace the darker side – assuming their audience members do not want to see or read that. Euphoria shows that you should still shine a light on the darker side of your market to satisfy the needs of your audience.
Game of Thrones
The mixed reactions to its final season and series finale sparked a lot of conversation and online buzz. However, most fans and critics would agree that its overall track record proves that Game of Thrones earned a spot on this year’s list in addition to the listing of some of the best televised content of all time.
Takeaway Lesson: Not every post or article that you create will hit the mark with your audience. Even the best content creators will publish a “dud” occasionally that falls flat. However, the best of content in 2019 – such as the final season of Game of Thrones – proves that your overall track record is what matters most. Your objective should be to dust yourself off and keep pushing forward with quality content.