Best TV Moments of 2012

From acid-loving ad men to out-of-control spooks and the triumphant return of Bubba, the greatest couch-surfing moments of 2012.

12

The Notorious Maggie Smith

downton abbey
Nick Briggs

Downton Abbey, PBS

She's the Dowager Countess of Grantham. There is none higher. All sucker dowager countesses must call her sire. Maggie Smith's Lady Grantham was the most badass of the old-school Brit aristocrats in this Anglophilia phenomenon from creator Julian Fellowes. Smith owns every scene, staring down the modern world with her killer-queen glare. When she tries to figure out how the telephone works, she somehow made the moment both hilariously condescending and historically poignant.

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