Gotham, which returns for its final season Jan. 3 on Fox, regained its narrative momentum during Gotham Season 5. Circumstances led Bruce Wayne through his evolution toward the Dark Knight he will become. His future nemesis, the Joker, was revealed to be genius Jeremiah Valeska, not his nutjob brother Jerome as anticipated. Gotham had veered back to being comic fanboy nirvana.
How to Get Away with Murder
Well, at least Connor and Oliver successfully got married. But there was little other happiness to go around on HTGAWM. Bonnie and Nate lost their chances at happiness in one gory event, Annaliese had to beg for her job back, only to find out that Gabriel was Sam's son but not hers. But this series is at its best when the shocks keep coming.
NCIS: Los Angeles
Who's not in this photo? Hetty. But then neither is Mosley, so that's a plus. After a season of body blows for who knows what reason, the OSP has gotten its groove back, its camaraderie back on full display That's despite rotating leaders of the week in Ochoa, Rogers, and Kilbride during Hetty's unexplained absence. After a recuperated Linda Hunt returns, all will be right in this world.
NCIS: New Orleans
NCIS: New Orleans Season 4 was too largely spent setting up the unexpected departure of Sonja Percy, which got in the way of the latest Dwayne Pride-getting-framed storyline. New leader Hannah Khoury, shown with Christopher LaSalle, has been the perfect antidote to that upheaval. She takes charge when necessary, but steps back when Pride chooses to intrude, which happens with regularity. She's also still an international woman of mystery. It's an intriguing combination of new and old.
When it should be circling the drain, the veteran CBS procedural has been mounting a comeback in NCIS Season 16. Gibbs needs someone to call him on his shit, and Jack Sloane has been filling that role admirably. Despite the departure of Abby and an intermittent Ducky, Jimmy and Kasie have proven an interesting new forensics generation. And what's going on between Torres and Bishop? Is it friendship or something more?
On The Resident Season 2, this medical drama is continuing to grow. There are Mina and AJ, two arrogant surgeons who don't realize they should be a couple. Dr. Bell is still bringing the sleaze as medical director. But it's the new characters that are stirring the pot: Conrad's mogul father Marshall, drug rep Julian Lynn and star orthopedic surgeon Kitt Voss. Substituting them for former characters that weren't working have helped this series to shine.