OK folks, let's get back to blogging and listing. You know you enjoy these lists.
(Photo caption: I'm number 1, I'm number 1.)
For background, over the weekend, Trey and I watched a few episodes of The Simpsons. We watched the episode in which the plot follows The Departed and also the episode where Homer is elected union chief. What do these two episodes have in common? Well, they're both hilarious. How do they differ? Well, the "Departed" episode is from season 19, which in and of itself is impressive. And, the union chief episode is from season 4.
Now, I don't go around memorizing which episode came from which season. Not that there's anything wrong with that. And you know who you are. But, it's remarkable that these two episodes, aired 15 years apart are both so funny.
I'll make my point and then get to the list. The old Simpsons episodes were consistently hilarious. I mean, side busting and always great. Now, not so much. There are a few good shows per season, but not many. It's more newsworthy when an episode is funny these days. Nonetheless, The Simpsons is the BEST sitcom of all time. Animated or not, this is classic TV. OK, here's the list.
1. The Simpsons. I've been through some of this already, but this is just the best show of all time. For about 15 years, this show was classically funny. It's still funny to watch old episodes. Even when I know the jokes before they happen, I still laugh. This is #1, and it's not really close after that.
2. Seinfeld. Hey, don't get me wrong, this is also an incredible show. But, maybe because it was ALWAYS broadcast in syndication, it seems overplayed. It's strange. I know when these jokes are coming too, and I can usually figure out which episode is airing within a few seconds, but it's just not the same. The social interactions are still good, but it seemed like the show became formulaic towards the end. I will grant you The Simpsons has been in this mode for a few years now, but it's my list. Feel free to disagree.
3. The Cosby Show. Come on, this show was incredible. It's a bit dated, but Cosby acting like Cosby is gold. Pure comedy gold. Maybe adding the two kids after Rudy was a bit much, but Olivia and Pam weren't terrible and really were small characters. Also, if you see some of the bit actors who appeared in the show over time, it's nuts. Adam Sandler, BB King, Dizzy Gillespie, Ray Charles, Tito Puente, John Amos, and on and on.
4. Frasier. I know some people aren't on my side here, but this is classic TV. I think this would have made a great play. All of the episodes could take place in one room. It's really all about the characters. This has to go down as the best spin-off of all time. Although I hear that The Cleveland Show is great. Also, that was the sarcasm font.
5. Cheers. It's hard to believe, but the spin-off is better than the original, but it is. Cheers was great, even if Diane was a terrible character.
6. All in the Family. I'll grant you, this isn't the most politically correct show ever, but it is truly hilarious. Also, The Jefferson's was a spin off from this show. It's worth watching just to see Sally Struthers not eating children in third world countries.
7. Family Guy. In recent years, this show has gone the way of South Park, in that it is profane and offensive simply for the sake of profanity and offensiveness. Also, every episode has two to three random flashbacks that have nothing to do with the plot and are just there for the sake of filling time. Or at least, that's how it seems to me. These things are not funny. But, don't get me wrong, the first few seasons were great. Before the plot revolved around Stewie being gay, or potentially gay, or whatever and was about Stewie being evil, or potentially evil, this show was better. It could have been higher on this list.
8. Arrested Development. This is another show that could have been higher on the list, but not because it quit being funny. It should have been higher but it ended. And season three, the final season, just ended. I'm not sure why it ended, but it could have continued.
9. King of the Hill. Is it just me, or is this show a lot funnier if you're from Texas? Come on, Hank's niece is named Luanne Platter. What do you order at Luby's? Come on, it's gold. Considering this was supposed to be filler between The Simpsons and X-Files, King of the Hill was pretty damn funny.
10. Scrubs. I'll admit, I thought this show was great. But then I realized I didn't like the main character. At all. Then I stopped liking Elliot and Carla. Then Dr. Cox got really old. The Janitor and Ted remained funny, as did Dr. Kelso. But I just quit watching.
Honorable mention. Friends. I never really liked this show, but I know a lot of people did. I'll put it on the list so that people won't complain. Not that this will stop the best complainers amongst you.
I'll also include Sanford and Son, and I'm sure some of you really like The Office. There's it, there's the list. Have at it.