When it comes to TV, sitcoms are something that the United States is known for. While there are definitely some great sitcoms out there from other countries, but the iconic entries tend to come from here. We’ve taken the time to put together our list of the best U.S. sitcoms ever made. While there are definitely some old favorites on this list, there might be one or two that surprise you. Keep reading to see what’s made the cut.
How could we compile any list like this and not include “Friends”? For 10 years, we spent six months of the year with our six favorite people. What’s so special and impressive about “Friends” is that it didn’t just make us laugh, but it managed to invade our culture. Who could forget Ross shouting “pivot”, Phoebe running in the park, Chandler and Monica deciding to get married at a casino, Rachel entering the show in a wedding dress, or Joey asking, “how you doin’?”. Everything about “Friends” was perfect. It came at the right time and it truly captured the imagination of a generation. While there have certainly been some great sitcoms that came after Friends, very few have managed to hit the amazing heights it did.
“Arrested Development” is perhaps one of the most under-the-radar shows in this list. However, with four out of the five seasons hitting amazing heights, it’s without a doubt one of the most sharply written sitcoms of the last 50 years. With hidden layer after hidden layer, the show truly offers its viewers something to think about while they are laughing. It may never have hit the ratings highs of shows such as “The Big Bang Theory”, but Arrested Development was actually a much smarter and wittier show.
Everything about the Bluth family was designed to be turned up to 11, with just the lone sane voices of Michael and his son in the show, it consistently drew laughs. Some might feel it was trying too hard to be smart sometimes, but there was more than enough in terms of laugh-out-loud moments to make this a show that you can easily come back to time and time again.
It was almost impossible for us to split these two up. Although they are both very different shows, each one cannot exist without the other. “Cheers” was the building blocks for Frasier. One aspect that both shows do show in large amounts is clever wordplay. Each show allowed its characters to twist and turn within the story to create some of the greatest one-line gags ever written. The fact that Frasier was nothing more “than a secondary character for much of the run of “Cheers” makes his shift to headliner all the more impressive.
Frasier managed to win award after award and it’s no surprise why this was the case. The writing was sharp, the actors were perfect for their characters and because the character of Frasier hadn’t been overused in Cheers, he still felt fresh. For anyone coming to the end of a long sitcom run, this is the ideal way to create a spin-off. We’re looking at you, Joey!
The ending to Frasier is one of the most bittersweet moments in TV history. The fact that Frasier will soon be back on our screens hopefully doesn’t take away from this aspect of the sitcom.
There’s an argument for Frasier to be the greatest sitcom of all time and while it may have had sharper writing than Friends and have arguably been more consistently funny, it didn’t quite have the cultural impact that Friends managed.
How could America’s favorite family not be on this list? Simple answer – it couldn’t. Many could point to the fact that “The Simpsons” hit somewhat of a ‘brick wall’ at one point and wasn’t quite as sharp as it once was. However, it goes without saying that it has managed to turn this around and return to form.
The last few years of “The Simpsons” has seen it gain a new lease of life and it has certainly managed to evolve to the point where it is relevant and, most importantly, funny again. Homer is perhaps the most iconic character in sitcom history and the ability of the writers to continually come up with new situations for him to find himself in is nothing short of genius.
The first eight seasons of “The Simpsons” were of such a high quality that even if every other season after that had been awful, it would have still remained as one of the best shows ever. That’s just how good those first eight seasons were. The fact that the show has managed to begin getting close to those heights again just shows how relevant and important the inhabitants of Springfield are to the world.
Our next candidate is another animated classic and an idea that shouldn’t have worked on paper. Foul-mouthed children, poor quality animation and some of the most offensive situations you could ever imagine. Over 20 years later and it’s safe to say that South Park has been a huge success. It would be very easy to just look at it and feel that it’s an offensive show laced with profanity, but that just isn’t the case. “South Park” is actually one of the sharpest shows on TV.
While the first two seasons were almost solely aimed at shocking as many people as possible, by the third season, the creators realized that they needed to step things up if the show was going to keep going. The removal of the Kenny dying trope and the move into clever social commentary helped the show to find a large audience.
It soon became apparent that it wasn’t just offensive and shocking TV, it had a message. Behind all the gratuitous jokes, it is one of the smartest shows ever made. “South Park” might not be to everyone’s tastes, but it’s been successful for a reason and that is due to the high quality of the show in all aspects.
South Park.The post The Greatest TV Sitcoms Ever appeared first on Programming Insider.
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