Adweek’s 25 Most Popular TV and Video Stories of 2018

As streaming competition heated up, the Roseanne roller coaster dominated headlines

ABC's marketing blitz, including a custom subway car, made Roseanne the TV hit of 2018, but only The Conners were left standing. - Credit by Jason Lynch
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In the worlds of television and streaming video, it was a year of evolution and experimentation—but not just among the old-school media companies you might expect. Streaming services faced their own challenges in an increasingly competitive landscape.

YouTube fought the uphill battle to convince viewers that it has a service worth paying for in YouTube Premium (renamed this year from YouTube Red). And content partnerships were hard fought across the board as an ever-growing lineup of services aimed at cord-cutters worked to lock in deals that would make them more attractive.

But one aspect of TV and video that continues to benefit from all this competition for eyeballs is quality programming. Viewers had no shortage of top-notch and high-quality programs to pick from, whether on broadcast, Netflix or emerging platforms.

And of course there were the unexpected real-world storylines of 2018, such as Roseanne Barr’s rapid rise back to the forefront of pop culture—and then her self-destruction.

Here’s a look back at Adweek’s 25 most-read TV and video stories of 2018:

No. 25: ABC Officially Picks Up The Conners, a Roseanne Barr-Free Spinoff of Roseanne

No. 24: Crazy Rich Asians Thrust Constance Wu Into the Spotlight, and She Knows Just What to Do With It

No. 23: Why Cobra Kai Isn’t Called The Karate Kid, and 4 More Things to Know About the New Series

No. 22: Following Anti-Gay Tweets, Kevin Hart Steps Down as Oscar Host

No. 21: 7 Ways That Paramount Network Is Launching With a Bang, Including Reduced Ad Loads

No. 20: USA Orders 4 Scripted Pilots Ahead of Upfront, Including One Related to the Bourne World

No. 19: As Nashville Winds Down, CMT Moves Its Brand Away From Scripted and Into ‘Open Country’

No. 18: YouTube Red Gets a Revamp—But It Comes at a Cost

No. 17: The Best TV Shows About Lawyers, Ranked by Real Lawyers

No. 16: The Ultimate Guide to 2018’s Broadcast TV Renewals and Cancellations

No. 15: Why ABC Put a ‘Make America Great Again’ Hat in Its Roseanne Subway Activation

No. 14: These Print And Digital Publishers Are Redefining What It Means to Be a Media Brand in 2018

No. 13: These Are the Networks Available on DirecTV Now, Sling, Hulu, YouTube TV and PlayStation Vue

No. 12: Jay Leno, Oprah and David Letterman Needed Only 20 Minutes to Make a Great Super Bowl Spot

No. 11: After Radical Revamp, MTV Enters Upfront With Its First Ratings Momentum in Years

No. 10: ABC Cancels Roseanne Following Roseanne Barr’s Racist Tweet

No. 9: The 14 New TV Shows We’re Most Excited to See in 2018

No. 8: Why Freddie Highmore Initially Turned Down The Good Doctor, And What’s Ahead for Season 2

No. 7: 4 Reasons ABC’s Roseanne Spinoff, The Conners, Doesn’t Miss a Beat Without Roseanne Barr

No. 6: Late-Night Hosts Desus and Mero Are Leaving Viceland for Showtime

No. 5: The Best TV Shows About Doctors, Ranked by Real Doctors

No. 4: ABC Turns a New York Subway Train Into Roseanne’s Iconic TV Living Room, Afghan Included

No. 3: Here’s What Happened During the Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime Show

No. 2: NBC Apologizes to Koreans for Analyst’s Comment During Opening Ceremony

No. 1: Sunday’s Family Guy Will Air Uninterrupted Thanks to PlayStation, the Show’s Sole Sponsor

@griner David Griner is creative and innovation editor at Adweek and host of Adweek's podcast, "Yeah, That's Probably an Ad."