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The Priestess's top ten eleven TV shows for 2001

1. Absolutely Fabulous
  When I heard Patsy and Edina were making a comeback, I was worried that new episodes would pale in comparison to classic Ab Fab. ("The Last Shout" certainly did.) However, I couldn't have been more pleasantly surprised. The divas of debauchery are better than ever, and all of the characters are being more fully developed. (Though I'd like to vote Katy Grin off the island!) The show has some heart now, but at the same time, it's become so depraved that even I don't get some of the sex and drug references! French and Saunders have turned everything up a notch. "This is the future, babe."  
2. The Simpsons
  The writing is back on track this season (for the most part). Thank goodness! What the hell were they smoking last year? Remember folks, take the plastic wrapper off your Philly's blunt before firing it up!  
3. Late Night With David Letterman
  Anybody who antagonizes Oprah Winfrey is a hero of mine. It is one of my life goals to see the show live. In the meantime, I settle for staying up late once in a while just to catch in on the tube  
4. Malcolm in the Middle
  This is dysfunctional family programming, brutally honest and not for the little ones. Jane Kaczmarek's character, Lois, may be utterly loathsome, but she reminds me of Mom -- and I mean that as a compliment.  
5. Will & Grace
  This is the closest America has ever come to the decadence and flamboyance of Ab Fab - thankfully, before Roseanne took a stab at it!  
6. ER
  I don't know how much longer I can hang on now that Anthony Edwards (Dr. Greene) and Eric LaSalle (Dr. Benton) are leaving. Noah Wylie (Dr. Carter) and Laura Innes (Dr. Weaver) can't carry the show alone. And why don't the producers ever flesh out Paul McCrane's character (Dr. Romano)?  
7. Animal Precinct
  "A small group of agents dedicated to protect New York City's 5 million animals." This is my favorite show on Animal Planet! It's about ASPCA agents who answer reports of animal abuse and neglect in the "nation's capital." (In other words, it's my dream job.) Some of the stories have happy endings, and some don't. THIS is reality TV!  
8. Who's Line Is It Anyway?
  When they imported this show from the U.K., I expected them to ruin it. Instead, it's just as funny and almost (not quite) as bawdy as the British version, owing in large part to U.K. players like Colin Mochrie and Ryan Stiles. Of course, Wayne Brady often steals the show, and rightly so. He's hysterically funny and beyond hot (i.e., probably gay). Oh, and you know it's hosted by Drew Carey, right?  
9. The Ellen Show
  Another recent comeback was that of Ellen Degeneres. CBS boldly scheduled the show at 8 p.m. on Fridays - prime family time - which is admirable, but I hope her audience will stay home to see it. It's good to see Ellen back in the spotlight, and long overdue  
10. Emergency Vets
  My second favorite show on Animal Planet, this show is rumored to be on the chopping block. It's another real reality TV show, which focuses on emergency veterinary situations. It's educational and sometimes icky, but you still might like it.  
11. The Bernie Mac Show
  A recent discovery of mine, this show is definitely worth mentioning. The title character is a successful (whatever that means) comedian. In the show, his sister is on a "state-sponsored vacation," and he and his wife gain custody of her three children. The show is peppered with Mr. Mac's reflective, yet naive monologues on parenting and other funny little subtexts. The Bernie Mac Show is geared toward black America but is entertaining for everyone. It's not The Cosby Show… thank goodness.  
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