The TV series, Epidemiya (The Outbreak) and Shtorm (Storm) emerged the leaders of a survey conducted among 18 Russian film and television critics. The survey was conducted on the movie website kino-teatr.ru. Experts were asked to name their top three picks for projects launched in 2019 and to explain their choices.
This year, among those who took part in the survey were experts from leading Russian media outlets, including GQ, Forbes, Vedomosti, Gazeta.ru, Argumenty i Fakty, Komsomolskaya Pravda, Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, Ekho Moskvy, Time Out, as well we the media focusing on the film and TV industry - Vokrug TV, KinoPoisk, KinoReporter, ProfiCinema, Teleskop, Kino-Teatr.ru, KinoPressa.ru and others.
In total, the journalists and film critics evaluated 34 TV series.
The drama thriller Epidemiya, made by PREMIER Studios, collected 11 votes (six for first place and five for second place). Pavel Kostomarov directed the series, which is based on a script by Roman Kantor. Famous Russian actors played roles in Epidemiya, including Victoria Isakova, Maryana Spivak, Kirill Kyaro, Alexander Robak, Yuri Kuznetsov, Anna Mikhalkova, Alexander Yatsenko and others. The plot centers on an unknown deadly virus, which causes a terrible epidemic. The main character Sergei tries to escape the boundaries of the quarantine area with his ex-wife and new lover. Three people who would never have come together under any other circumstances now need to unite forces in order to escape the expanding epidemic and start a new life. The series is available exclusively on the PREMIER online platform.
The crime drama Shtorm, produced by the Yellow, Black & White studios, got 12 votes (six for first place, five for second and one for third). The series is available exclusively on the START platform. Boris Khlebnikov directed the project while Natalia Meshchaninova wrote the script. Alexander Robak, Maxim Lagashkin and Anna Mikhalkova played the lead roles in the series. The plot tells the story of two friends, Yuri Osokin and Sergey Gradov. Osokin works in the police’s homicide department while Gradov is in the anti-corruption department. The latter needs to save his wife from a fatal illness and find money for an expensive surgery. As a last resort, Gradov starts doing criminal activities on the job and trying to hide the evidence.
The critics also complimented the TNT television series Triada (Triad), Polyarny (Polar Circle), Tolya Robot (Tolya is a Robot), Zhuki (Beetles) and IP Pirogova, which have aired on the Super TV channel, as well as Mylodrama (Soap Opera) from Friday! TV channel. Ten (Shadow) from NTV channel, and the PREMIER series Uchitelya (Teachers) and Mertvoe Ozero (The Dead Lake).
Gazprom-Media TV series were also among the Top 3 in 2018. At that time, the journalists recognized the projects Zvonite DiCaprio! (Call DiCaprio!), Obychnaya Zhenshina (An Ordinary Woman) and Domashny Arest (House Arrest).
Gazprom-Media is successfully developing the PREMIER video service, which offers subscribers exclusive access to original TV series and films. Since PREMIER’s launch in August 2018, its subscribers have seen 13 premieres from the best Russian film directors, which were created specifically for the online-platform.
According to the Kino-teatr.ru website, 150 TV series, which have more than four episodes each, were shown in Russia this year. The website also noted that 15.5% of all projects are currently released on online platforms.