Thursday, May 01, 2008

Best Sitcoms Ever?

The fine folks at AOL have tried to come up a list of The 50 Best Sitcoms Ever. Your thoughts?

MY thoughts:

• My #1 would simply have to be "Frasier." There's never been a smarter, funnier show on TV.

• Though it aired for only something like what, 9 episodes, it's a crime to list the best sitcoms of all time and NOT include "Fawlty Towers." The John Cleese masterpiece, while definitely a BBC sitcom not intended for the funny bones of us Yanks, was almost the perfect blueprint for all sitcoms to follow.

• The AOL list doesn't shy away from the cheezier sitcoms -- "Gilligan's Island" made the list, for !*&#'s sake -- yet we don't get "Three's Company" on the list anywhere. I'm not saying that it's cinematic genius by any stretch, but "Three's Company" was the catalyst and greatest purveyor of one of the easiest ways to get a laugh: Put 4 characters in a room, have 1 of the characters overhear a conversation but misunderstand what they overheard, and let the antics begin. Totally puerile stuff... but if you think about it, it's the same plot device used almost every week on "Frasier."

• No "Mork & Mindy"? You've gotta admit, it was a wildly inventive show for its day, though most of the laughs were merely the world being introduced to Robin Williams, a guy who we'd sort of like to forget nowadays.

• Other shows I'd consider: Reno 911, Futurama (a show I find infinitely funnier than "The Simpsons" on average,) The Young Ones, Home Movies, and the criminally short-lived Undeclared.

And their 1-50 order is totally wrong.

That's MY take, at least. You?


Jolene said...

They totally forgot to list "That 70's Show"!!!!

Socialist Christian Hippie said...

Fawlty Towers would start my list, but "Father Ted" would be close behind. Then "Absolutely Fabulous", "The Office", "Vicar of Dibley", "Are You Being Served", "The Young Ones" Geez, let's see we haven't even reached American Shores yet.

The best American sitcom...

Hmmmm...well, if you include cartoons, there's "Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law", Futurama, Beavis and Butthead, South Park, Family Guy.

Live Action: "Taxi", WKRP, Threes Company (which is definitely the most British style comedy we imported) All in the Family, Sanford and Son...

The Live Action are pretty far down there though. I'll have to breeze on by the top fifty.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, "Frasier," definitely. It's entirely too easy to get caught up in massive marathons of it.

And seconding the recommendation of "The Vicar of Dibley," for obvious reasons. Seriously - fat, funny, younger female clergyperson. What is not to absolutely love about that? And a Brit, to boot! Dawn French is my shera.

B in StL