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Cast Members Of NBC's Comedy Series "Friends." Pictured (L To R): David Schwimmer As Ross Geller, Jennifer Aniston As Rachel Cook, Courteney Cox As Monica Geller, Matthew Perry As Chandler Bing, Lisa Kudrow As Phoebe Buffay And Matt Leblanc As Joey Tribbiani.

In celebration of the sitcom in all its progressions and permutations, we’ve compiled a list of the best sitcoms of all time using IMDb data.

The sitcom—or situational comedy—has never been broader in scope than it is now. Shows like Rick and Morty and The Boondocks are technically sitcoms, in that they throw their characters into comedic, occasionally familiar situations. At the more traditional end of the spectrum are shows like The Office and The Big Bang Theory, which infuse conventional formulas with contemporary characters, styles, and motifs, consequently luring in millions of viewers.

Counting down from 57, here are the best sitcoms of all time.

  • 57. New Girl

    – IMDb user rating: 7.7
    – Years on the air: 2011–2018

    Starring Zooey Deschanel, this single-camera sitcom created by Elizabeth Meriwether follows the day-to-day life of a palpably quirky, newly single teacher named Jess after she moves into an L.A. apartment with three men she’s never met. With each new season, their friendships and relationships are a focal point of the show.

  • 56. Kenan and Kel

    -IMDb user rating: 7.8
    – Years on the air: 1996–2000

    Before he became the longest-running cast member on Saturday Night Live, Kenan Thompson was one-half of the sketch comedy duo “Kenan & Kel.” On their popular Nickelodeon series, Thompson and cohort Kel Mitchell play best friends who are always getting into trouble as they pursue get-rich-quick schemes. In the midst of the show’s success, the duo also starred in the “All That” spinoff film “Good Burger,” which retains a respectable cult following.

  • 55. Fresh Off The Boat

    – IMDb user rating: 7.8
    – Years on the air: 2015–2020

    Based on the best-selling memoir by celebrity chef Eddie Huang, this single-camera comedy from ABC follows Huang’s Chinese-American family as it chases the American dream in 1990s Orlando. For young Eddie, that means exploring the wide world of American hip-hop while his father opens a Western-themed steakhouse. During the show’s first season, Huang himself provided voiceover narration, but that gig quickly came to an end over creative differences.

  • 54. The Addams Family

    – IMDb user rating: 7.9
    – Years on the air: 1964–1966

    Released the same year as The Munsters, this similar sitcom was about a lovable, but macabre family of outsiders. Based on a cartoon series by Charles Addams, the show introduced audiences to classic characters Gomez, Morticia, Uncle Fester, and Lurch. Like The Munsters, The Addams Family only ran for two seasons, but endured well past its cancellation date. In 1991, a star-studded movie version smashed expectations at the box office, though the same couldn’t be said for the 1993 sequel.

  • 53. Rocko's Modern Life

    – IMDb user rating: 7.9
    – Years on the air: 1993–1996

    An Australian wallaby named Rocko moves to the United States in this animated comedy, which aired for four seasons on Nickelodeon. Joined by a cow, a turtle, and a dog, Rocko deals with everything from troublesome vacuum cleaners to clogged toilets, all of it going down by way of a zany, surrealist aesthetic. One of the show’s animators was Stephen Hillenburg, who went on to create “SpongeBob SquarePants.”

  • 52. Dexter's Laboratory

    – IMDb user rating: 7.9
    – Years on the air: 1996–2003

    One of Cartoon Network’s first Cartoon Cartoons, this animated series follows a boy genius named Dexter who performs experiments in his secret bedroom laboratory. Dexter’s parents may be none the wiser, but his annoying sister catches on to his antics, then tags along for a range of wacky sci-fi adventures.

  • 51. Cheers

    – IMDb user rating: 7.9
    – Years on the air: 1982–1993

    At over a decade on air, Cheers was one of the longest-running TV series. It centered on the lives and interactions of the owners and patrons of a bar called Cheers. The show’s memorable theme song called it a place “where everybody knows your name” and this concept was the heart and soul of the series. “Cheers” was instantly beloved even though the Neilsen ratings didn’t show it. It placed 77th out of 100 shows in its debut year. In that same year, it earned 13 Emmy nominations and won 28 Emmys out of 179 nominations over the course of its lifetime.

  • 50. Big Mouth

    – IMDb user rating: 7.9
    – Years on the air: 2017–present

    This Netflix comedy series might host a range of young cartoon characters, but it’s most definitely not suitable for children. Specifically, Big Mouth takes an uncompromising approach toward teenage puberty, sparing no graphic detail. Comedian Nick Kroll co-created the sitcom and provides the voice for one of its most memorable characters: Hormone Monster. Fellow comedic talents John Mulaney, Maya Rudolph, Fred Armisen, and Jordan Peele also lend their voices.

  • 49. Weeds


    – IMDb user rating: 7.9
    – Years on the air: 2005–2012

    TV legend Jenji Kohan created this hit series for Showtime, in which a desperate suburban widow (Mary-Louise Parker) resorts to pot-dealing to support her family. Like a semi-comedic predecessor to “Breaking Bad,” the show finds its protagonist coming up against a range of obstacles as she gains market share. In the process, she discovers that everyone from nearby neighbors to local politicians are privy to the occasional (or frequent) toke.

  • 48. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

    – IMDb user rating: 7.9
    – Years on the air: 1990–1996

    Saddled with a massive tax bill from the IRS, hip-hop star Will Smith (aka Fresh Prince) signed on to this NBC sitcom and rose to the foremost ranks of television. Of course, that was merely the beginning of what would eventually become an A-list movie career. In the show, Smith moves from West Philadelphia to Bel-Air, where he influences all those around him by way of his infectious, street-savvy personality. To this day, it’s hard not to see the words Fresh Prince of Bel-Air without hearing the catchy theme song.

  • 47. Ugly Americans

    – IMDb user rating: 8.0
    – Years on the air: 2010–2012

    This subversive animated series from Comedy Central takes place in an alternate version of New York City where monsters and humans coexist. As social worker Mark deals with his zombie roommate, demon boss, and succubus girlfriend, he struggles to maintain an optimistic disposition. Despite receiving high marks from the viewers who actually watched it, the show was canceled after two seasons.

  • 46. F Is for Family

    – IMDb user rating: 8.0
    – Years on the air: 2015–2021

    Comedian Bill Burr harkens back to a simpler era in this semi-autobiographical cartoon. Set in the 1970s, the show finds Burr tackling the voice of a foul-mouthed Irish-American named Frank Murphy, who lives in the suburbs with his wife and three children. Also featured are the voices of Laura Dern, Justin Long, and Sam Rockwell.

  • 45. The Goldbergs

    – IMDb user rating: 8.0
    – Years on the air: 2013–present

    Based on the childhood experiences of creator Adam Goldberg, this ABC sitcom presents young Adam and his family in all their eccentric glory. Not only does the series bring the 1980s to life, it even authentically reproduces Adam’s old bedroom, complete with the original posters. Providing narration as present-day Adam is comedian Patton Oswalt.

  • 44. Boy Meets World

    – IMDb user rating: 8.0
    – Years on the air: 1993–2000

    This once-popular ABC sitcom centers on an adolescent named Cory Matthews (Ben Savage), who experiences a range of comedic misadventures while coming of age in middle school, high school, and college. In Cory’s orbit are his best friend, Shawn, his principal and neighbor, Mr. Feeny, and his love interest, Topanga. In 2014, the Disney Channel debuted “Girl Meets World,” a follow-up featuring Cory and Topanga as a married couple and chronicling the exploits of their daughter, Riley.

  • 43. Married... with Children

    – IMDb user rating: 8.0
    – Years on the air: 1987–1997

    Married…with Children set the stage for the new TV trope of the “jaded washout.” Al Bundy, played by Ed O’Neill, is the quintessential high-school-athlete-turned-middle-aged-misanthrope with, at best, an unremarkable but more often dysfunctional family. The show, which aired on Fox, never did well from a ratings perspective. At the time the show debuted, Fox was only one year old and not available to everyone in the country. Despite enduring growing pains as its host network tried to establish itself, Married…with Children developed a cult following.

  • 42. Malcolm in the Middle


    – IMDb user rating: 8.0
    – Years on the air: 2000–2006

    Bryan Cranston plays the goofy patriarch of a dysfunctional family in this hit Fox series. Of course, it was star Frankie Muniz who most frequently took center stage in Malcolm in the Middle, commonly breaking the fourth wall as he dealt with his rambunctious brothers and kooky parents.

  • 41. That '70s Show

    – IMDb user rating: 8.0
    – Years on the air: 1998–2006

    “Hanging out, down the street!” So goes the opening song for this Fox sitcom, which accordingly follows a group of Wisconsin friends as they hang out in the street, in the basement, in bedrooms, and anywhere else where their parents can’t find them. It all goes down in the 1970s, hence the name, the clothes, the hairstyles, and the interior decorations. Bringing the premise even further to life are a number of future stars, including Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis, and Topher Grace. In an effort to capitalize on the show’s success, Fox released a spiritual successor, That ‘80s Show which landed with a dull thud.

  • 40. High Maintenance

    – IMDb user rating: 8.1
    – Years on the air: 2016–2020

    Though the show most people are familiar with today aired on HBO in 2016, it actually got its start on Vimeo as a web series four years earlier. The show follows a weed delivery guy known only as “The Guy” around Brooklyn. Through his interactions with a new customer every episode, viewers get an intimate glimpse of a person who is otherwise one of the millions of nameless residents of NYC. The series has been praised for its ability to authentically portray feelings of loneliness and the value of human connection—even if it is with your weed delivery guy.

  • 39. Home Movies

    – IMDb user rating: 8.1
    – Years on the air: 1999–2004

    In this animated series, an aspiring 8-year-old director casts his friends in numerous homemade films. After a brief run on the UPN Network, the show was revived by Cartoon Network, where it became part of the original Adult Swim lineup. Voice actor H. Jon Benjamin and co-creator Loren Bouchard would later reunite on Lucy: The Daughter of the Devil, and Bob’s Burgers.

  • 38. Daria


    – IMDb user rating: 8.1
    – Years on the air: 1997–2001

    In this animated series, teenager Daria Morgendorffer maintains a dry, sardonic disposition while dealing with the complexities of adolescence. The character was first introduced in Mike Judge’s Beavis and Butt-Head, and named after one of Judge’s old classmates. Nevertheless, Judge was not involved in the spin-off, as he was busy working on other projects.

  • 37. Workaholics

    – IMDb user rating: 8.1
    – Years on the air: 2011–2017

    Three inseparable slackers do everything but work in Workaholics, which aired on Comedy Central for seven seasons. Co-created by its three stars, Blake Anderson, Adam DeVine, and Anders Holm, the series follows the trio from one harebrained scheme to the next, unleashing a bevy of crude jokes and memorable characters along the way. “Gotta be fresh,” goes the theme song, and for the most part, the show abides.

  • 36. Bob's Burgers

    – IMDb user rating: 8.1
    – Years on the air: 2011–present

    This animated series centers on the oddball Belcher family and their fledgling burger joint. The sitcom goes big on personality and usually concludes with a musical number during the end credits. A running gag is Bob’s “Burger of the Day,” which offers a play on words like the “Rest in Peas Burger,” the “Olive and Let Die Burger,” and so on. It was co-created by Loren Bouchard, who was previously co-creator of Cartoon Network’s Home Movies.

  • 35. Family Guy


    – IMDb user rating: 8.1
    – Years on the air: 1999–present

    Saved from cancellation not once, ut twice, Seth MacFarlane’s animated series now endures as a mainstay on the Fox network and in popular culture alike. Despite an opening theme song that laments the decline of old-fashioned values, Family Guy delivers an endless supply of raunchy jokes and morally bankrupt characters, skewering the traditional sitcom format.

  • 34. Big Bang Theory


    – IMDb user rating: 8.1
    – Years on the air: 2007–2019

    The Big Bang Theory expertly blends old-school formulas with modern themes. Co-created by sitcom wizard Chuck Lorre, the show follows a group of self-professed geeks and their respective girlfriends as they bicker about everything big and small, and occasionally solve the universe’s greatest riddles.

  • 33. The Amazing World of Gumball

    – IMDb user rating: 8.2
    – Years on the air: 2011–2019

    Still going strong is this award-winning series on Cartoon Network, which takes place in the fictional town of Elmore, California, and chronicles the adventures of a blue cat named Gumball. Over the course of six seasons, the show has undergone a number of stylistic changes in terms of aesthetics and tone alike. Additionally, it employs a range of visual styles within a given episode, including CGI, live-action, stop-motion, puppetry, and traditional animation.

  • 32. Grace and Frankie

    – IMDb user rating: 8.2
    – Years on the air: 2015–present

    This well-received dramedy series from Netflix stars Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin as Grace and Frankie, two long-standing rivals who must seek common ground when it turns out their husbands are in love with one another. The show came to viewers from co-creator Marta Kauffman, previous co-creator of a little show called Friends.

  • 31. Eastbound & Down

    **NSFW: Language Warning**

    – IMDb user rating: 8.2
    – Years on the air: 2009–2013

    Former baseball legend Kenny Powers (Danny McBride) returns to his hometown and lands a job as a gym teacher in this outrageous HBO comedy series. Co-created by McBride, Eastbound & Down is essentially a showcase for his character’s singular brand of misguided machismo. Despite wrapping up years ago, the series continues to earn new fans.

  • 30. SpongeBob SquarePants

    – IMDb user rating: 8.2
    – Years on the air: 1999–present

    Combining impressive animation skills with a background in marine biology, Stephen Hillenburg created SpongeBob SquarePants and subsequently fried children’s brains, according to one study. Alarmist studies notwithstanding, the show about a talking sea sponge and his wacky friends remains a bonafide smash hit, complete with widespread merchandising, a range of video games, and two feature film adaptations.

  • 29. 30 Rock

    – IMDb user rating: 8.2
    – Years on the air: 2006–2013

    Winner of numerous Emmy Awards, this celebrated sitcom from Tina Fey takes place behind the scenes at a sketch comedy show in the mold of Saturday Night Live. Thanks to brilliant writing and a talented cast, the show slings jokes at the speed of sound. Starring alongside Fey is Tracy Morgan, Alec Baldwin, and Jane Krakowski, each of whom brings a distinct personality to the table.

  • 28. The Good Place

    – IMDb user rating: 8.2
    – Years on the air: 2016–2020

    Set in the afterlife, The Good Place follows its four main characters as they desperately try to avoid eternal damnation, resorting to every possible trick in the book. There to pull the occasional string is a demon named Michael, played by Ted Danson.

  • 27. Veep

    – IMDb user rating: 8.3
    – Years on the air: 2012–2019

    Bolstered by laser-sharp dialogue, HBO’s Veep takes viewers inside the White House, where even the slightest faux pas can prompt a domestic or international crisis. Playing Vice President (turned President, turned former President) Selina Meyer to perfection is actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who continues to dispel the myth of a Seinfeld curse.

  • Master of None

    – IMDb user rating: 8.3
    – Years on the air: 2015–present

    Comedian Aziz Ansari explores everything from modern romance to cultural divides in this popular Netflix series. Not only does Ansari play a fictionalized version of himself in the show, he even cast his real-life mom and dad as the parents of his character.

  • 25. Scrubs

    – IMDb user rating: 8.3
    – Years on the air: 2001–2010

    This popular comedy goes down in Sacred Heart Hospital, where Dr. John “J.D.” Dorian (Zach Braff) deals with crazy patients and co-workers alike. Distinguished by its hyperkinetic style, each episode weaves multiple storylines together at breakneck speed, even taking the occasional dive into Dorian’s subconscious. The series aired on NBC for its first eight seasons, and ABC for its last two.

  • 25. How I Met Your Mother

    – IMDb user rating: 8.3
    – Years on the air: 2005–2014

    The story of how a man named Ted met the mother of his two kids provides the basis for this highly-rated CBS sitcom. That said, the show primarily chronicles the comedic exploits of five best friends, while throwing in a clever mystery for good measure. Meanwhile, some fans wondered if Ted was in fact an unreliable narrator, implying that the events and characters weren’t being depicted accurately. According to Neil Patrick Harris‚ who played a womanizer named Barney in the series—it’s a totally plausible theory.

  • 24. I Love Lucy

    – IMDb user rating: 8.4
    – Years on the air: 1951–1957

    Easily one of the most influential and enduring sitcoms of all time, I Love Lucy stars Lucille Ball as the title character, a scheming housewife with big dreams of stardom. With help from friends, Lucy engages in a countless number of ill-fated shenanigans, to the chagrin of her bandleader husband, Ricky Ricardo (played by real-life husband Desi Arnaz). It wouldn’t be hyperbolic to suggest that I Love Lucy both pioneered and perfected the sitcom format, or that Desi Arnaz invented the rerun. More than 60 years later, the show remains an absolute masterclass in comedy.

  • 23. The Boondocks

    – IMDb user rating: 8.4
    – Years on the air: 2005–2014

    Based on a controversial comic strip of the same name, this equally controversial Adult Swim cartoon centers on the Freemans, a Black family that moves into an all-white neighborhood. Rife with social commentary, the show pulls no punches in its depiction of various cultures, classes, stereotypes, and viewpoints. The show’s four seasons were spread out over nine years. Creator Aaron McGruder’s presence was missed in the final season. A revival series is slated for release in 2022.

  • 22. Broad City

    – IMDb user rating: 8.4
    – Years on the air: 2014–2019

    In 2014, Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson adapted their popular web series for Comedy Central, and this thoroughly modern TV show was born. Starring Glazer and Jacobson as their barely tweaked alter-egos, the show follows its wild leads on a range of unpredictable adventures throughout their beloved New York City. Comedian Hannibal Buress guest stars.

  • 21. Entourage

    – IMDb user rating: 8.4
    – Years on the air: 2004–2011

    Like a male-centric answer to “Sex and the City,” HBO’s Entourage follows movie star Vincent Chase and his crew as they pursue the Hollywood dream, one conquest at a time. Lurking just beyond the million-dollar movie deals, fancy cars, and gorgeous women, however, is an unforgiving industry that seems ready to chew Vinnie up and spit him out at the drop of his next clunker. There to make sure it doesn’t happen is super-agent Ari Gold, played by Jeremy Piven.

  • 20. Futurama

    – IMDb user rating: 8.4
    – Years on the air: 1999–2013

    From Matt Groening of The Simpsons fame comes this animated comedy series, in which a pizza boy named Fry is accidentally frozen and wakes up 1,000 years into the future. After the culture shock wears off, Fry befriends a group of misfits, including an alcoholic robot named Bender, and a one-eyed spaceship captain named Turanga Leela. After an initial run on Fox from 1999–2003, the show was resurrected by Comedy Central from 2008 to 2013.

  • 19. Brooklyn Nine-Nine

    – IMDb user rating: 8.4
    – Years on the air: 2013–2021

    “Law. Without the order.” So goes the tagline for this idiosyncratic comedy, which stars Andy Samberg as immature but skilled NYPD detective Jake Peralta. When not butting heads with his superior, or hitting on his co-worker, Peralta is known to be quite the crime-solver. Despite a loyal fanbase, Brooklyn Nine-Nine was canceled by Fox and subsequently picked up by NBC.

  • 18. Modern Family

    – IMDb user rating: 8.4
    – Years on the air: 2009–2020

    Utilizing a mockumentary style format, this ABC sitcom explores family dynamics in the modern age, hence the name. An instant success when it debuted in 2009, the series managed to balance heavy themes with lighthearted comedy.

  • 17. Regular Show

    – IMDb user rating: 8.5
    – Years on the air: 2009–2017

    Created by J.G. Quintel, this animated series commonly uses mundane scenarios as a gateway to a slew of surrealist adventures. At the heart of the action are a blue jay named Mordecai and a squirrel named Rigby, who tend the grounds at a local park. When establishing the world of Regular Show, Quintel reimagined characters he’d originally created for a now-famous short film, “2 in the AM PM.”

  • 16. Flight of the Conchords

    – IMDb user rating: 8.5
    – Years on the air: 2007–2009

    This acclaimed HBO series follows New Zealand’s “fourth most popular guitar-based digi-bongo acapella-rap-fun-comedy folk duo” as it tries to break through in America. The show was co-created by Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement, who play fictional versions of themselves and improvise many of the best lines. After getting off to a slow start, Flight of the Conchords had become a veritable cult sensation by the time it wrapped.

  • 15. Schitt's Creek

    – IMDb user rating: 8.5
    – Years on the air: 2015–2020

    In this tale of riches to rags, video store magnate Johnny Rose (Eugene Levy) goes bust and moves his family to Schitt’s Creek, a town he and his wife once purchased as a joke. Forced to rebuild their lives from the ground up, the spoiled Rose family must finally learn the true meaning of survival. The show originally aired on Canada’s CBC Network then got picked up by the Pop Network. Starring alongside Levy is his real-life son and daughter, Dan and Sarah.

  • 14. Adventure Time

    – IMDb user rating: 8.6
    – Years on the air: 2010–2018

    For the legions of loyal fans, it was hard to say goodbye to Adventure Time, which delivered its final episode in 2018. Set in the Land of Ooo, the animated series pits a boy named Finn and his shape-shifting dog, Jake, against a range of sympathetic villains. It all comes to life by way of stunning animation and surprisingly complex character development. An average episode clocks in at 11 minutes, and doesn’t waste a single second.

  • 13. Archer

    – IMDb user rating: 8.6
    – Years on the air: 2009–present

    When the characters in this animated comedy aren’t squabbling over petty issues, they’re out uncovering conspiracies and catching bad guys. For the most part, however, they’re squabbling over petty issues. As for Archer himself, he would make for quite the talented spy, were he not so frequently distracted by alcohol, women, his mother, interoffice politics, or some combination of the above. Needless to say, it all makes for essential viewing.

  • 12. Parks and Recreation

    – IMDb user rating: 8.6
    – Years on the air: 2009–2015

    Set in the fictional town of Pawnee, Indiana, this mockumentary-style sitcom chronicles the humorous exploits of various public officials. To give the show an authentic vibe, creators Greg Daniels and Michael Schur had assistants perform extensive amounts of research at local municipalities. In the wake of a poorly received first season, Parks and Recreation was restructured for season two, which helped win over scores of critics, even if it never amounted to big ratings.

  • 11. The Simpsons

    – IMDb user rating: 8.6
    – Years on the air: 1989–present

    Here’s a show so influential and comprehensive that “The Simpsons did it” endures as a popular meme—thanks to South Park, that is. Indeed, for its first nine seasons, in particular, this animated Fox comedy skewered society, pushed boundaries, and basically reinvented television for the modern era. Meanwhile, the love and devotion between each member of Springfield’s Simpson family remains palpable, giving the show an earnest core. That this wildly inventive sitcom became the longest-running scripted series on primetime TV in 2018 feels secondary to its previous cultural accomplishments.

  • 10. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

    – IMDb user rating: 8.7
    – Years on the air: 2017–present

    Gilmore Girls creator Amy Sherman-Palladino is the brains behind this series on Amazon Prime, in which a 1950s housewife named Midge (Rachel Brosnahan) pursues a career in stand-up comedy. The show has won around a dozen awards and appears to only get better with age.

  • 9. Curb Your Enthusiasm

    **NSFW Warning: Strong Language**

    – IMDb user rating: 8.7
    – Years on the air: 2000–present

    Seinfeld co-creator Larry David brings his particular brand of comedy to this uproarious HBO series, which finds him playing a slightly fictionalized version of himself. Impervious to the norms of society, David manages to turn even the most mundane situation into a showdown of epic proportion. Behind the scenes, a talented cast of comedians uses improvisational skills to make the magic happen.

  • 8. BoJack Horseman

    **NSFW Warning: Strong Language**

    – IMDb user rating: 8.7
    – Years on the air: 2014–2020

    BoJack Horseman tells the story of a washed-up TV actor of the equine variety who is eager to reclaim his former glory. As he flounders around Hollywood, BoJack complains about everything under the sun, and battles all sorts of personal demons. In the process, the show itself holds up a harsh, albeit humorous, mirror to the entertainment industry.

  • 7. Freaks and Geeks

    – IMDb user rating: 8.7
    – Years on the air: 1999–2000

    The quintessential cult comedy, Freaks and Geeks aired for just one season before being canceled, subsequently earning itself an incredibly loyal fanbase. In the show, an intelligent girl and her younger brother navigate the complex world of high school with help from a group of outsiders. Even though a disproportionate number of cast members went on to enjoy wildly successful careers, at least a few of them wish the series would have lasted longer. In fact, Seth Rogen claims he once cornered a former NBC executive and took him to task over the premature cancellation.

  • 6. Arrested Development

    – IMDb user rating: 8.7
    – Years on the air: 2003–2019

    In the wake of his father’s arrest, Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman) finds himself tethered to his aloof, wealthy family in this wild comedy, which was canceled by Fox after three seasons, and then picked up by Netflix. In order to distinguish itself from standard sitcom fare, Arrested Development relies on a slew of stylistic devices, including voice-over narration by co-creator Ron Howard, time jumps, flashbacks, self-referential jokes, cutaways, and much more. Liza Minnelli delivers a reliably funny guest performance as family matriarch Lucille Bluth’s arch-rival (also named Lucille).

  • 5. It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

    – IMDb user rating: 8.8
    – Years on the air: 2005–present

    What began as an $85-spec pilot is now a bona fide comedy sensation. The show is about a group of sociopathic friends who try to run an Irish pub, but mostly just engage in a bunch of completely harebrained schemes. It first aired on FX, then moved to FXX in 2013.

  • 4. Seinfeld

    – IMDb user rating: 8.8
    – Years on the air: 1989–1998

    Created by Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld, this iconic series upended the sitcom format at every turn, in part thanks to a strict “no hugging, no learning” policy. Chronicling the misadventures of four selfish New York friends, the show got off to a slow start, then launched into the ratings stratosphere during its fourth season. In the time since, the series hasn’t lost an ounce of its comedic luster, which helps explain why Hulu dropped more than $100 million for streaming rights. Along with The Simpsons, Seinfeld is arguably the most influential TV comedy of the modern era.

  • 3. Friends


    – IMDb user rating: 8.8
    – Years on the air: 1994–2004

    NBC’s Friends—about the exploits of six BFFs living in New York City—is about as close to perfect as a modern traditionally formulated sitcom can get. Carried by impeccable writing and an infectious cast, the series invokes extreme levels of viewer engagement. One might even suggest that the undivided loyalty between Rachel, Ross, Monica, Joey, Chandler, and Phoebe solidifies the bond between the show and its audience. Sealing the deal is an endless supply of brilliant gags.

  • 2. The Office

    – IMDb user rating: 8.9
    – Years on the air: 2005–2013

    The gold standard among mockumentary-style sitcoms, this NBC series adapted a Ricky Gervais comedy for American audiences and struck a major chord in the process. While the everyday exploits of a paper company may not sound like the stuff of timeless comedy, a group of memorable characters and an endless stream of guest actors made it work for nine seasons.

  • 1. Rick and Morty

    – IMDb user rating: 9.2
    – Years on the air: 2013–present

    The intergalactic misadventures of a boy named Morty and his alcoholic grandpa Rick continue to take the world by storm. Like its two intrepid explorers—or at least one of them—the show remains committed to pushing the boundaries of its own potential. As a result, viewers simply never know what they’re going to get with any given episode. They just know it’ll be wildly inventive and laugh-out-loud funny.

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