AFI Top 10 TV programs of 2016: Emmy champs ‘Game of Thrones,’ ‘Veep,’ ‘The People vs. O.J. Simpson’ win again

The three big winners at this year’s Emmys — the comedy “Veep,” drama “Game of Thrones” and limited series “The People vs. O.J. Simpson” — number among the AFI Top 10 TV programs of the year as announced Thursday (Dec. 8) .

The American Film Institute list is laden with freshman fare including the comedy “Atlanta,” the dramas “The Crown,” “Stranger Things” and “This is Us” and the limited series “The Night Of” making the cut. Of last year’s honorees, only “Game of Thrones” and two of its Emmy rivals, “The Americans” and “Better Call Saul” are back.

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Last year, the AFI honor roll was split evenly between returning series and shows that debuted in 2015. As with this year, only two comedies made the cut (“Black-ish” and “Master of None”) then and neither returns.

Despite the increasing admiration for streaming networks within the industry and by other awards groups, only one is represented here: Netflix with “The Crown” and “Stranger Things.” And “This Is Us” is the lone representative of network TV programming.

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This year, AFI’s special award for the program that contributes to America’s cultural legacy is ESPN’s “O.J.: Made in America.” The seven-hour series is also in contention at the Oscars for Best Documentary Feature.

These programs, along with the winners of the film awards, will be feted during a Jan. 6 luncheon in Los Angeles.

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