BY OLIVER LYTTELTON
We have, as you’ve probably noticed, not least from the Emmy Awards this week and Andy Samberg’s opening number, reached Peak TV. Even professionals whose job is to devour small-screen comedy and drama series can’t keep up with all the output, what with not just traditional cable outlets like HBO and FX, but also scripted serial newcomers like WGN America and Lifetime and streaming services like Netflix and Amazon getting in on the action.
It also means that, while TV remains a writer’s medium, that directors have been getting more attention. With shows like “Game Of Thrones” proving to be able to pull off big-screen-quality production value, the likes of “Hannibal,” “Mr. Robot” or “The Knick” are formally experimental in a way that shows could never been a decade or two ago. Since an episode of “The Walking Dead” can attract as many eyes as most summer blockbusters, it’s unsurprising that discerning viewers are starting to zero in on the directing credits a little more than previously.
So we wanted to shine a light a little more on the best directors working the small-screen beat. Not the A-list filmmakers who drop in for a quick pilot or run like David Fincher or Martin Scorsese, or those who’ve mostly abandoned the TV world for features (like Alan Taylor of "Thor: The Dark World" and "Terminator: Genisys" fame), but the relatively unsung heroes working regularly in television who elevate and improve your favorite shows. Take a look at those we consider the 25 best working today, and let us know your own picks in the comments.
Unrelated to the Christian rock star of the same name, Tricia Brock kicked off her TV career in one of the more impressive ways possible —by writing two episodes (albeit in the less-loved second season) of David Lynch’s “Twin Peaks.” Her 2004 feature “Killer Diller” moved her into directing, with her first TV helming job, on a 2006 episode of “Grey’s Anatomy,” following swiftly. Since then, she’s handled almost every kind of show imaginable, from frothy teen shows like ‘Gossip Girl” or “Ugly Betty,” to comedies like “30 Rock” and “Community,” to musical “Smash,” to dark, acclaimed fare like “Breaking Bad” (she helmed the fifth episode of the last season), and “The Killing.” The last couple of seasons have seen her outrageously in demand: she’s worked on “Silicon Valley,” “Mozart In The Jungle,” two episodes of “Girls” (including this year’s excellent Mimi-Rose centric “Ask Me My Name”) and most notably, a killer episode of “Mr. Robot” (“Tricia Brock CRUSHED this episode of MR. ROBOT,” Steven Soderbergh tweeted). Next up, Jason Reitman's “Casual” and some s4 of “Orange Is The New Black.”