7. The Good Doctor
The Good Doctor is the latest show to join the 'white male savant' genre, with Freddie Highmore starring as Dr. Shaun Murphy, a brilliant autistic surgeon. Highmore himself is recognized as the high point of The Good Doctor, and is compelling as the lead, but the concept as a whole has been heavily criticized. In many ways, The Good Doctor is a re-boot of House, with a brilliant medical professional who struggles to connect with his patients on an emotional level, and whose personal issues often cause conflict. The Good Doctor has also created a lot of buzz around the ways that it deals with autism, with some applauding the writers for the way that they are handling the lead character's condition (especially showing him in a professional setting), and others angry at the way that Dr Murphy seems to confirm many less-than-positive stereotypes about those on the autism spectrum. Highmore himself has also created videos to talk about autism, and to attempt to raise awareness of the condition, but it's a sensitive subject that is bound to spark some controversy no matter what. Netflix's Atypical, while not on the top trending list, dealt with similar responses for the same reasons.
6. Bachelor In Paradise
The only reality TV series to make this list, Bachelor In Paradise undoubtedly got some searches from fans wanting to learn a little more about the various contestants of this 'competitive romance'. Pitting past contestants from The Bachelor and The Bachelorette against each other, Bachelor In Paradise has all the usual reality show drama to enjoy... but the big reason that it has become one of the top trending shows of the year is the sexual assault scandal that rocked the production before it even aired. During filming, two of the contestants got very drunk, and were filmed throughout as they got very sexually explicit in the pool. During the incident, one of the producers claimed to feel deeply uncomfortable, and wanted to stop filming, but had her request denied. She then allegedly threatened to sue the production over what happened, leading to filming being stopped altogether while an investigation took place. The female contestant involved, Corinne Olympios, stated later that she had blacked out before the sexual relations happened, meaning that she was unable to give consent to it. In a year where sexual assault allegations have continued to rock Hollywood, this scandal was one that threatened to shut down Bachelor In Paradise for good. Eventually, however, the season did air; only a little later than originally planned.
Riverdale has had a fantastic year in 2017, with the entire first season and half of the second season released on the CW and on Netflix, and it has built up a huge fanbase in this short span of time. An adaptation of the Archie and Jughead comics, Riverdale is a gloriously trashy murder-mystery series set in a small town populated by only gorgeous people, and it takes some real liberties with the comics to create something new and completely addictive. It's not just the wonderfully more-ish nature of Riverdale that has had it trending this year, though, as the production and its stars have been caught up in multiple controversies over the past twelve months. Lili Reinhart drew the ire of some fans after posting a photo of a woman dressed up as a demon in black body paint, saying that it would be her Halloween costume; which led many to accuse the young star of promoting blackface. Cole Sprouse's character, Jughead, also sparked controversy when he got into a relationship, frustrating asexual fans who felt that his presumed asexuality in the comics should have been honored in the series. One of the other stars of Riverdale, KJ Apa, was in a car accident after working a 14 hour day, leading to accusations that the production was working cast and crew too hard on set in Vancouver, BC.