Every Sitcom I’ve Seen Ranked


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“If there is any one storytelling medium that has consumed my life, it is undoubtedly TV shows. I truly was born in the right generation. The advent and exponential spread of streaming platforms have made it easier than ever to consume hours of entertainment in mass, and I love it.”

Fisher Meyerink, Staff Writer

If there is any one storytelling medium that has consumed my life, it is undoubtedly TV shows. I truly was born in the right generation. The advent and exponential spread of streaming platforms have made it easier than ever to consume hours of entertainment in mass, and I love it. Among Chronic TV bingers, there exists a duality of sorts, between the watchers of dramas and the watchers of sitcoms. I fall strictly in the middle of this spectrum.


12: The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt


This show has a great intro, and that’s about it. When people talk about AI eventually taking jobs from writers I usually just brush them off. This show makes me wonder if they’re right. If you boiled down millennial humor into the most basic jokes, tropes, characters and situations and made it a show, it would be the “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.” If we made contact with aliens, and were slowly trying to get them used to our humor, this show would maybe have some value, but as is I can’t find any. Sorry Kimmy, but the better Schmidt comes much further down in this list. 2/10


11: Superstore


Superstore” and Kimmy Schmidt occupy very similar spots in my mind. They both came out in 2015 at a time when network sitcoms were competing to try and occupy the void that “The Office” left behind two years prior. That being said, I kinda liked this show. The plot was fairly simple, but what else would you expect from a show about working in a superstore? This show didn’t try anything particularly risky, but it didn’t necessarily do anything egregious wrong either. This show likely could have used a bit longer in the writers’ room, but it works perfectly fine as a show that you can turn your brain off and watch, which is all it really needed to be. 


10: Friends


Another show that’s perfect for turning your brain off. It even tells you when to laugh. Although I do think the edits of this show that remove the laugh tracks achieve a greater comedic level than the show ever could naturally, overall this show gets way more hate than is warranted. This show, plain and simple, is a mess, but I can’t help but love it regardless. This likely comes from the fact that this was the first sitcom I ever watched, but it does come with a cozy feel few other shows replicate. Not a show I would necessarily recommend, but one I would gladly rewatch.


9: 30 Rock

I’m sorry, I don’t get it. I’ve heard people talk about this being maybe their favorite sitcom of all time, and I just can’t see it. This show has a great premise but failed to really connect with any of the characters or humor. I ultimately feel that this show works as a good encapsulation of an era of comedy that I never really got to experience. If there are any 40-year-olds who are asking for sitcom recommendations though, this would likely be your safest bet. 


8: Seinfeld


The main mistake people make when watching “Seinfeld” is that they keep expecting the show to get funny. The humor isn’t the appeal of “Seinfeld.” Sure it’s there, with some great jokes here and there, but the main draw is just how relatable the characters are. I will die on this hill, “Seinfeld” is the most relatable show I have ever seen. Sure, all the characters suck, but they make you feel a lot better about yourself. I also have to praise this show for how experimental it got. Having entire 20-minute episodes where the characters wait in line at a Chinese restaurant or try to find where they parked their car took guts. That being said, I really can’t stand laugh tracks. Overall, good show.


7: Schitt’s Creek


This is my family’s favorite show, and I understand the appeal. This is a great comfort show. This show’s purpose seems to be to make you feel good, which I respect. Just a nice little show with great characters, but I can’t really find much else to say about it.


6: The Office


If “The Office” ended after Micheal left, this sitcom would likely be much higher on this list. The complete character assassination of Andy in this show is truly something to behold. How the writers’ room managed to take one of the best characters in the show and turn him into the most insufferable one is truly remarkable. That being said, “The Office” truly is an undeniable show. Sure, it is one of the most popular shows of all time, but I think it in many ways earns it. Seasons two and three of this show are absolutely perfect, and the show keeps this momentum going for a while. As I said before, there is certainly a noticeable dip in quality, but it can’t be easy trying to keep a show fresh for nine seasons. This show was one of the first sitcoms I ever watched, and it marks the beginning of the truly amazing shows on this list.


5: Parks and Rec

If I was judging “Parks and Rec” objectively, it would probably be lower than “The Office,” but this is my list, so I’m keeping it here. “Parks and Rec” starts out feeling like a cheap “Office” clone, but to be fair, most shows take a season or two before they really catch their stride. While I do think that the humor of “The Office” is objectively better, “Parks and Rec’s” characters just make the show something truly special. Every character in this show ends up being so well-defined. This show is what I imagine when people start to gush over “Schitt’s Creek,” a show that shines because of its simple premise, lovable characters and undeniable charm.


4: New Girl


I really didn’t want to watch “New Girl.” It sat at the top of my recommendation list on Netflix for years, and I never gave it the light of day. Everything that I saw from this show looked like the most generic sitcom imaginable, like another Kimmy Schmidt. But it’s not. “New Girl” is amazing. What I think makes this show great is its relatively small cast of characters. The chemistry that these actors have with each other is truly a treat, and each seems so perfect for each of their roles to the point where I can’t possibly imagine anyone else taking their place. Schmidt may be my favorite character in a sitcom, period. This character doesn’t have one unfunny delivery, he truly is a treat to watch


3: The Good Place


This is perhaps the first and only show with no noticeable drop in quality. I feel confident in saying that “The Good Place” is a perfect show. “The Good Place” and one other show that comes later on in this list are the only fully serialized shows, and they both benefit from this immensely. Sure, at the end of the day, this show’s primary purpose is to make you laugh, but it does so much more than that. The intricacies of this show’s world are just so well thought out. No development feels forced, no twist feels cheap. One of the things I respect most about this show is that it knew when to end. With only four seasons, this show is the shortest on this list (tied with Kimmy Schmidt, but that show doesn’t exist in my mind.) This show was commercially successful enough to run for as long as it wanted to, but the showrunners clearly had a vision of the complete story when they started, and stayed faithful to that vision. This show is a must-watch. Even if you have had the first season spoiled to you, I promise there is more to come, and seeing how the show ends up where it does is truly amazing.


2: Arrested Development


This series centers on the Bluth family, the owners of The Bluth Company, a global media and entertainment conglomerate, who are fighting for control of the company amid uncertainty about the health of the family’s patriarch. No, this isn’t “Succession,” it’s “Arrested Development.” The first three seasons of this show are the best-written seasons of a sitcom I have watched, period. What it lacks in heart, “Arrested Development” makes up for in pure efficiency. “Arrested Development” is a joke-telling machine. Its only purpose is to entertain you. The story of “Arrested Development” is a sad one. While a critic’s darling, “Arrested Development” ultimately failed to ever gain mass appeal. While other sitcoms similar to “Arrested Development” have arcs that last multiple episodes at a time, “Arrested Development” tells one unified story. This format makes it perfect for the era of streaming platforms but just wasn’t well suited for cable. Being the first three seasons of this show truly feels like watching a 19-and-a-half-hour movie. There are so many setups that take episodes to pay off, which makes the series endlessly rewatchable. I think my favorite part of the show is that none of the characters change. They’re awful human beings from start to finish but hey, they sure are funny. Sure, the last two seasons kinda suck, but hey, that can be said for pretty much every show on this list.


1: Community


If there was ever a show doomed to fail, it is “Community.” The show faced cancellation nearly every season, ran up against some of the most successful TV shows of its generation, lost cast members left and right and killed the Yahoo streaming service but miraculously, somehow came out alive The prophecy of six seasons and a movie was initially created as a joke introduced in the third season poking fun at the fact that there was no real chance for the show to last any longer. But somehow, it did and with the movie’s script finalized, and filming beginning in may, it seems that this impossible story is finally coming to an end. This truly is a special show. It is so much more than just a parody show, as many boil it down to. Sure, the show does plenty of spoofs that have defined its legacy, but each is done with such passion and obvious love for the source material that it never feels cheap. A sitcom centered around a study group in community college, “Community” starts out with a deceptively simple plot, before putting this eclectic group of characters through every situation imaginable. Through its episodes centered on a chicken finger mafia or an exploration of parallel universes, to a zombie apocalypse set to the music of Abba, the reason that community manages to blur the lines of what a sitcom can and can’t be is due to the obvious love from the actors, writers and directors of the show. This show has shaped my humor and aspirations as a writer in so many ways and I will always be grateful for that.