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10 New Best Cable Series To Watch in 2013

Updated on October 22, 2013
underthedome profile image

Denis is a freelancer addicted to football ('s not soccer!). He thinks POLITICS and REALITY TV were invited to dumb us down.

Tatiana Maslany
Tatiana Maslany | Source

Cable vs Network

Over the last couple of years, Networks (CBS, CW, NBC, FOX and ABC) have gradually been losing their credibility as a source of quality and engaging entertainment. Rarely do we get shows that leave a lasting impression; shows in the mold of previous hits like 24, Lost and The Practice. They also win very few people over when they keep ruthlessly cancelling shows; shows that fans have invested all their time watching.

The 2012-13 season was considered a complete bloodbath for TV shows as Networks ruthlessly cleared off their schedules. What was even more surprising is the ridiculous shows that were actually renewed for further seasons on TV. Shows like NBC's Revolution and CW's Beauty and the Beast are just not good enough! At the same time, Cable TV is thriving with quality content being churned out every new season. Cable is where one finds Emmy-worthy programming while Networks can only maintain comedy's and cop shows.

The Best of Cable 2012-13

This season hasn't produced shows of the same calibre as Homeland and Mad Men, but there is still enough quality to keep one interested.

1) Da Vinci's Demons

With Starz closing the chapter on its biopic hit series Spartacus, a new show was needed to fill the obvious void left. Da Vinci's Demons seems to be the answer. The show about the Florence-born multi-talented genius and his early years in Renaissance Europe. Da Vinci is caught in between two warring factions: The ruling Medici family of Florence and the Rome based papalcy. Amidst all this chaos, Da Vinci tries to search for his mother who left him as a child. This show adds a fantasy twist to the famous story about one the world's greatest minds ever.

2) Rectify

Sundance's new show is a bit slow paced but surprisingly engaging. Rectify tells the story of Daniel Holden who is set free after 19 years in prison when new contradictory evidence comes to light. His arrival back home doesn't sit well with most the town folk as most still see him as being guilty. The most interesting part of the show is how Daniel tries to adjust to a very changed world; a world that seems to have passed him by while he was in prison.

3) Orphan Black

Critics' new favorite show of the past season. Tatiana Maslany stars in this Canadian science fiction hit as one of several identical women who turn out to be clones. She impersonates one of her clone 'sisters' who is dead only to find out that she's stepped into the life of a cop. She then realizes that someone is out to eradicate her and her other 'sisters'. By playing more than 5 different personalities, Maslany shows a high level of versatility that has impressed fans and critics alike.

4) House of Cards

Kevin Spacey stars in this political drama that is an adaptation of a UK miniseries of the same name. Spacey plays a Democratic congressman who is passed over for the post of Secretary of State; a post he was expected to get. He methodically plans to get back at those he sees as having robbed him of his due. The highly acclaimed drama exposes a very dark side and vindictive side of politics.

5) Copper

The BBC America show is set in mid-19th century New York City, during the American Civil war. It follows the life Kevin 'Corky' Corcoran as he tries to keep the law in New York's Five Points neighborhood. Corky is also in search of his wife who went missing while he was at war. Copper is already in its second season.

6) Hemlock Grove

Netflick's horror thriller staring Famke Jansen (X-Men's Jean Grey/Phoenix) that has managed to elicit different views from both fans and critics. The show is about a girl who is brutally attacked and murdered in a small fictional Pennsylvanian town. The hunt for the killer begins in a town that has many secrets and anyone is considered a suspect.

Keri Russell
Keri Russell | Source

7) The Americans

FX brings back Coldwar era espionage with this hit show starring Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys as Russian spies posing as a married American couple living in the suburbs of Washington D.C. They seem like an ordinary couple with two American born children living the American dream. Their lives become more complex when an FBI agent moves his family into the house across the street. The couple also faces the problem of keeping true to their communist values in a seductively democratic environment.

8) Banshee

Cinemax's new attempt at developing original content follows an ex-con as he takes the identity of a small town sheriff. Lucas Hood comes to Banshee, after serving 15 years in prison, to find his accomplice in the diamond heist that sent him to prison. He finds her with a new family and under a new assumed identity. More complications arise when the incoming sheriff is murdered before assuming his job. Lucas takes this opportunity to hijack the dead sheriff's identity.

9) Defiance

Syfy's new show deals with immigration in galactic terms. The show shares the same universe with a new video game of the same name. Several alien species (Votans) come to earth seeking refuge after the demise of their home planet. War breaks out before their refugee status is resolved; and consequently, the planet's political, physical and biological landscape is changed forever. A drifter, Joshua Nolan, finds himself the sheriff of the border town, Defiance. Nolan finds the job challenging due to the different resident species that can barely tolerate each other.

10) Graceland

Graceland is USA's new cop drama. A group of undercover agents from different agencies (e.g. the FBI and DEA) are housed in a drug lord's confiscated beach house in southern California. Mike Warren is a rookie straight out of FBI'S Quantico who is assigned to 'Graceland' with the specific orders of investigating, Paul Briggs, the lead agent at the warehouse - who also happens to be his field-training agent.


These are just a few of latest productions but for those new fans, Cable has a quality line-up of returning shows that include:

  1. Homeland
  2. Game of Thrones
  3. The Walking Dead
  4. Mad Men
  5. Sons of Anarchy
  6. Breaking Bad
  7. Dexter
  8. The Newsroom
  9. Boardwalk Empire
  10. True Blood

With Netflix picking up cancelled Network shows, which of these would you like to see get picked up?

See results


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    • Rae Saylor profile image

      Rae Saylor 

      5 years ago from Australia

      Orphan Black is WOAH (watched the series 3x -- I still think Tatiana Maslany deserves an award) and Graceland is all sorts of AWESOME (also: Aaron Tveit!) :)

      Thanks for writing this hub. Voted up!

      P.S. No "Orange is the New Black"?

    • My SciFi Life profile image

      My SciFi Life 

      5 years ago from London, UK

      :P Had to do a search for it and it actually turns out I have written a hub on it! LOL. Its called the Emberverse series by S.M. Stirling. I've written a hub on the first book - Dies The Fire - not sure if I can post links, but it's below.

    • underthedome profile imageAUTHOR

      denis nasila 

      5 years ago from Mombasa

      I'm glad that the Syfy channel is going back to a genre that appeals to hardcore science fiction fans. With regards to Revolution, the show has failed in terms of getting strong lead characters (a fact that lead to the death of The Event) and its apocalyptic scenario becomes more unconvincing the more you compare it to shows like the Walking Dead. Finally, what book would that be - the closet storyline I can compare this show to is Goerge R. Stewart's Earth Abides.

    • My SciFi Life profile image

      My SciFi Life 

      5 years ago from London, UK

      I've definitely been enjoying Defiance and I have to admit, while Revolution started out slow (I thought it simply a rehash of a book series I read), it has surprised me. It's gotten quite interesting and engaging as it doesn't seem like the writers are hiding any secrets, but are actually telling their audience what's going on.


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