12/29/2014 06:14 EST | Updated 02/28/2015 05:59 EST

Favourite 2014 TV Moments From a Big Fan

I'm a child of television and have grown up on great television. I recognize TV is a tough business and it's hard to make television that is good. Thankfully, good television is still being made and 2014 had its share of great TV moments. Here, some of my favourites.

Images by Fabio via Getty Images

I'm a child of television and have grown up on great television. I recognize TV is a tough business and it's hard to make television that is good. Still, that doesn't excuse most reality TV. The (still expanding) genre has received its deserved share of flagellation thus no need to extrapolate. Thankfully, good television is still being made and 2014 had its share of great TV moments. Here, some of my favourites:

Indra K. Nooyi, CEO of Pepsi, on whether or not women can "have it all." This was the perfect answer to last year's Sheryl Sandberg media tour.

Billy Bob Thornton on Cooking Competitions.

Oprah's "Master Class" is by far one of my favourite hour on television. The Billy Bob episode was no exception and it delivered this little golden nugget:

Barbara Walters' Farewell On The View.

Many prominent women on television credit Walters as their mentor. And they came out for her last show on The View. History.

Chris Rock On Charlie Rose, on being famous as a Black man.

In my eyes, Charlie Rose remains one of the very best interviewers. And because he is such a good interviewer, his guests feel at ease and are able to in return, deliver great interviews.

PBS' "American Masters" - "The Boomer List".

I've often said that my yearly contribution to PBS is some of the best money I spend. The shows Frontline and American Masters could be put in "the best television in the world" vault. Here's the trailer from American Masters' "The Boomer List" series:

Portlandia - "History Of Hip Hop "

Portlandia is a gem of a TV series. This particular featurette captures the show's essence and wit.

Viola Davis, in a clip the Academy should use as her (most likely Emmy nod), from the TV show How To Get Away With Murder.

Shonda Rhimes penned yet another must-see-series. Oscar winner Viola Davis delivered a goosebumpy scene without saying a word. A bit like she did in Doubt.

J.Cole on Letterman.

This came à point nommé, in the wake of the Eric Garner grand jury travesty. "Be Free" is a manifesto.

Cindy Crowley's CNN Farewell.

CNN use to be great. And in its early days of greatness, Cindy Crowley was there. 2014 marked her last year at the network and the farewell featured a clip of her first question as a White House Correspondent. Gold.

John Oliver takes down FIFA and the World Cup.

John Oliver's weekly HBO show is what we all needed. His editorials are smart and enlightening. His FIFA and World Cup rant was exceptional considering how much of a fùtbol fan he is.

Senator Elizabeth Warren, on Letterman.

Because there is an option to Hillary Clinton in 2016 and because Letterman is not the goof he wants you to think he is. A great exchange between two raconteurs.

CBS commentator James Brown addresses domestic violence in the NFL.

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. James Brown, a Harvard alum, is definately on top of the "best sports commentator" chart. This editorial delivered in the wake of the Ray Rice debacle was powerful not only because of its content but also because of the timing of its delivery. Brown used a pre-game show on a network that recently signed a very lucrative deal with the NFL. With subtlety, he challenged not only the league but also its questionable Commissioner.

Stephen Colbert. Period.

There were many moments to choose from: his star-studded farewell, his Eric Garner Grand Jury editorial, his Mike Brown editorial. I chose this short clip from the Kennedy Center Honors Soirée. Short, sweet and testament to his politico acumen:

All things on CBS This Morning.

No need to sugarcoat it: "CBS This Morning" is an impeccable news show. Tightly produced, well-researched with great co-hosting by Charlie Rose, Nora O'Donnell and Gayle King. In addition to the co-hosting, the show boasts a series of correspondants who very often deliver must-see reportages. Anthony Mason, one of my favourites, does great music pieces. In 2014, notable ones included interviews with Arcade Fire in Montréal and one with Neil Diamond.


    DH Lawrence's book, banned until 1963, gets a big-budget reworking from the BBC as part of its 20th-century literature season. L'homme du jour James Norton is a war-wounded Sir Clifford Chatterley, unable to satisfy his luscious Lady, played by Holliday Grainger. Where does she turn instead? Step forward Mellors, played here by 'Game of Thrones' star Richard Madden. Script by 'Line of Duty' scribe Jed Mercurio.
    Based on the prizewinning novels by Hilary Mantel, this six-parter has had a reported £6million spent on it, no doubt most of the budget on costume and cast - including Mark Rylance, Damian Lewis, Claire Foy, Mark Gatiss, etc etc. The books' devoted fans will be watching every frame of Thomas Cromwell's rise and fall at the court of Henry VIII. The BBC will not want to disappoint. Starts 21 January 9pm on BBC Two.
    Back to the lapping shores and palm-fringed breezes of Saint-Marie for the fourth series of this 'Midsomer-On-Sea' ratings winner. Now Humphrey Goodman has realised his feelings for a colleague are more than professional, chaos will surely ensure. Meanwhile, there's a murder - during a seance - to be solved.
  • 'CRISIS'
    Haven't had enough of Gillian Anderson after the creepy finale of The Fall? Fear not, she's back in action in 'Crisis' on Watch Channel, where she plays a Washington CEO, whose daughter is kidnapped along with the President's. 'Crisis' has been cancelled in the US, which means, on the bright side, we'll get the cracking finale we were denied in 'Homeland Series 1'. Starts on Friday at 9pm.
    This is the highly-anticipated spin off from the phenomenon that was 'Breaking Bad'. Bob Odenkirk plays Saul Goodman in this prequel to his antics with Walter White, although those later events will also get plenty of reference. Coming to Netflix shortly after its February premiere on AMC in the US.
    A drama about gay men being, well, gay... suddenly becomes interesting with news that it's from Russell T Davies, the provocative, witty, creative force who brought us 'Queer as Folk' and the whole universe of 'Doctor Who' and 'Torchwood'. He wanted to write something real, and he has.
    Two (real-life) years after the mystery of Danny Latimer's murder was solved, we're back in the community still devastated by his death - including detectives Alec Hardy (David Tennant) and Ellie Miller (Olivia Colman), who must rally because there's another crime to solve. Writer Chris Chibnall has installed the same rules of non-disclosure as for the first time around, but can the return to the coastside town possibly have the same impact on a nation of gripped viewers?