I've been thinking about the shows I've watched over the last few years and with less than 6 months to go of the 2010s, I'm not sure I'll watch a comedy that is as good as the ones I've listed below.
All of them pre-date the more recent trend of releasing a trailer before the show has even started. You may have noticed that I link to a lot of Netflix trailers and they really do help to sell a a show but there's nothing like stumbling across something that becomes a favourite. Arrested Development is a great example of a show that I fell in love with with just a glimpse of an episode on a TV. Each of these shows falls into the same category and had me within an episode or two.
The Last Man On Earth
Almost a year after a deadly virus sweeps Earth, Phil Miller (Will Forte) is seemingly the only human survivor in late 2020. As he searches for others and paints signs stating he is alive in his hometown of Tucson, Arizona, he finds no one. Before attempting suicide, he discovers another survivor, Carol Pilbasian (Kristen Schaal). Despite being annoyed by each other, Carol insists Phil marry her so their children will not be born out of wedlock. Although Phil thinks that it is ridiculous to hang on to traditions from the "old world", they marry for re-population purposes. Over the next several months, more survivors join them. When Phil's irritating attitude leads to his banishment from Tucson, Carol leaves with him.
The Last Man On Earth is the best description of season 1, episode 1, but turns out that there's more than one person out there. It's a show I had queued up for months but never got around to watching. I hadn't even seen a trailer before I finally gave it a chance and it had me hooked instantly. Tragically, it was cancelled after 4 seasons after a major cliffhanger. I'd love for the show to be resurrected. Over the course of 4 seasons, we saw a lot of cameos and beautiful friendships and relationships between all of the characters, I'd love to see at least one more season.
Set in the fictional 99th Precinct of the New York City Police Department in Brooklyn, Brooklyn Nine-Nine follows a team of detectives headed by the overly serious, newly-appointed Captain Raymond Holt (Andre Braugher). The detectives include Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg), who frequently arrests the most people, despite his relaxed, carefree attitude; this annoys his stern and by-the-book partner, Amy Santiago (Melissa Fumero). The hard-working but timid Charles Boyle (Joe Lo Truglio) is partnered with the stoic and sometimes aggressive Rosa Diaz (Stephanie Beatriz). Detectives Michael Hitchcock (Dirk Blocker) and Norm Scully (Joel McKinnon Miller) seem incompetent, but have solved more cases than the others because they have been on the job much longer. The detectives report to Sergeant Terry Jeffords (Terry Crews), a gentle giant and devoted family man who is initially afraid to go back to active police work for fear of dying in the line of duty and leaving his children fatherless. The precinct also includes sarcastic civilian administrator Gina Linetti (Chelsea Peretti), who dislikes her job, prefers to enjoy her social life, and believes that dancing is her life goal.
Like The Last Man on Earth, B99 was cancelled too, but rescued after an outpouring of support on social media. It's a show that has also featured many cameos but unlike others on this list, it's more like the Friends format where an episode is generally it's stand alone piece. Of course, knowing the back story helps, but it's not necessary.
The Good Place
The series focuses on Eleanor Shellstrop (Kristen Bell), who wakes up in the afterlife and is introduced by Michael (Ted Danson) to "The Good Place", a highly selective Heaven-like utopia he designed, as a reward for her righteous life. However, she realizes that she was sent there by mistake and must hide her morally imperfect behavior while trying to become a better and more ethical person.
Another show I didn't hold out much hope for, I gave it a chance and was hooked after a couple of episodes. The plot above doesn't give anything away, as there's a twist towards the end of the first season, but it describes it perfectly. We already knew season 4 was on the way, but now we know that's where it will end. Really looking forward to seeing how they wrap it all up.
Friday Night Dinner
Friday Night Dinner depicts Shabbat dinner in the middle-class secular Jewish Goodman family. It is set in suburban North London, and filmed there, in Mill Hill. The family consists of mother Jacqueline "Jackie" (Tamsin Greig), father Martin (Paul Ritter), elder son and musician Adam (Simon Bird), and younger son and estate agent Jonathan "Jonny" (Tom Rosenthal). The stories follow the family as they have their dinner, which is often interrupted by Adam and Jonny pranking each other and by their strange, lonely, friendless next-door neighbour James "Jim" Bell (Mark Heap), who is attracted to Jackie and terrified of his own dog Wilson.
I cannot believe I didn't know about Friday Night Dinner until 2019. It first aired on TV in 2011 and it really stands up well even today. It's a show that reminds me of the my younger days and the religious aspect or reason for having dinner together has no bearing on how familiar the family dynamic feels sometimes.
Big Mouth is an American adult animated sitcom created by Nick Kroll, Andrew Goldberg, Mark Levin, and Jennifer Flackett featuring teens based on Kroll and Goldberg's upbringing in Westchester County, New York, with Kroll voicing his fictional younger self.
The only animated series here, Big Mouth ended up being far more than I expected, in every sense. From hormone monsters, to Coach Steve, it's all so wrong and yet so right. I find Rick & Morty hard to get into sometimes, and Family Guy/American Dad have had their time in the spotlight.
Netflix have already announced Season 3 is on the way, but here's the teaser for season 1:
Fleabag is a British comedy-drama television series set in London. Show creator Phoebe Waller-Bridge writes and stars as the protagonist, Fleabag, an angry, confused and sexually voracious young woman living in London.
The show is adapted from Waller-Bridge's 2013 Edinburgh Festival Fringe one-woman play of the same name which won the Fringe First Award. The initial idea of the character of Fleabag came from a challenge by a friend, where Waller-Bridge was given the task of creating a sketch for a 10-minute section in a stand-up storytelling night.
Odd name for a show, and in reviews/commentary, the name by which everyone references the lead character. Wrapped up in 2 seasons, the show follows a lady who has lost her best friend and broken up with her boyfriend (again) and how she self-destructs her way through life.. The way the fourth wall is broken is really good, but it's done even better in season 2.
No trailer for Season 1, but here's a short clip:
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