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Willi Nilli: TV killed the radio star

As I alluded to in my last column, my perfect day would be in the middle of the winter, snow falling outside and my favorite TV show or movie playing on a big screen TV.

It was pointed out to me a few days ago that with my confirmation as a TV and movie junkie (as well as a lover of a good book) I might have left a few people wondering what movies and TV shows I spend so much time watching. To answer that question, it would probably take a week or more for me to put into writing all the TV shows that I love and why I love them so much. And ditto for the movies I love to watch and the books I love to read. So, for this edition of my Willi Nilli column, I will stick with a much simpler task of giving you a few highlights of the shows I can’t miss each week as well as a short list of the shows that really shaped who I am today as well as my taste in television in general.

Currently, I am a huge fan of three shows on the CW network, which used to be the WB just a few years ago. One of my all-time favorite shows is Supernatural, a show about two brothers and their run-ins with the many, many monsters that live in our nightmares and the minds of the insane people who script horror movies. The show is just wrapping up its 10th season, which I find to be hugely impressive in a time when very few shows that aren’t CSI or Law & Order, or at the very least not police or law procedurals, last more than a few years.

The other two shows I really love on the CW are the Arrow, based on the DC Comic character the Green Arrow, and the the Arrow spinoff show the Flash, which is also based on the DC comic hero the Flash. Both of these shows have been favorites of mine since the Arrow premiered three years ago and the Flash got his own show at the start of last fall’s TV cycle. They both follow the lives of the titular characters as they adjust to being heros in their own city while also trying to keep their secret identities secret to ensure the safety of the ones they love the most.

Aside from the shows I watch every week on the CW, I am also a big fan of Castle, Once Upon a Time and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on ABC. Those shows are always interesting every week they are on and even though some of them (mostly Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) have had their slow moments I can’t get myself to stop watching them. Of the three, I think I like Castle the most since it stars one of my favorite actors Nathan Fillion, who was the star of possibly my favorite TV show of all time Firefly. But more on that later.

I am also a really big fan of pretty much everything BBC America puts on its channel, including, but not limited to Orphan Black (which you should be watching if you aren’t already), Ripper Street and, of course, Doctor Who.

For the sake of keeping this column short, or at least shorter, I will just take the time to tell you that, like I said before, you need to be watching Orphan Black if you aren’t already. That show is leaps and bounds above any other show on TV right now for the way it deals with everyday problems, as well as some really crazy sci-fi situations, as lead actress Tatiana Maslany plays 10-plus clones of herself. Maslany plays each of her clones so real that you can barely tell that it is the same actress playing more than four clones of herself in the same scene. That, if nothing else, is reason enough to watch it, but the show also continues to build on itself and create more and more crazy twists that you will never see coming.

I haven’t been a Doctor Who fan for a very long time, but I really got into the show during a rough patch in college when it became my escape from my life and my problems and worries at the time. Doctor Who has since become one of my all time favorite shows alongside the aforementioned Firefly and Orphan Black.

In an second attempt, since the first obviously failed, to keep this column short I will just give you a list of the other shows that have long since been canceled that I really wish were still on TV today since they are way better than almost everything that is called “TV” that you see today.

First off, I am going to say what every fan of Firefly will tell you when you ask them about the show: it was canceled way, way too soon by the jerks over at FOX (this is a sentiment that actually brought my fiance and myself together when we first met). Firefly had the potential to be one of the best shows of all time and is still considered among the best even though it didn’t make it through a full season.

And now that I’ve vented about Firefly, a list of my favorite shows couldn’t be complete without including the Muppet Show, Leverage, Eureka, Hogan’s Heroes, Get Smart, Bob’s Burgers, Dirty Jobs, Top Gear and Frasier. I might be missing a few others that I will feel stupid for not mentioning later, but those are the ones that jump out at me and I will always want to go back and watch on a snowy winter day with my fiance on the couch.

I hope that this column was educational for you and gave you a little more insight into what makes me tick, and tock for that matter. For my next column, I might go through my favorite movies or my favorite books, but it would be hard to narrow either of those down enough to give even a top 10 of my favorites. But I will give it a try if I’m feeling like sharing more when my next column comes around. 

Jordan Willi
Jordan Willi is a reporter for the New Richmond News. Previously, he worked as a sports reporter at the Worthington Daily Globe in Worthington, Minnesota. He also interned at the Hudson Star Observer for two summers and contributed to the Bison Illustrated sports magazine at North Dakota State University.
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