Last week, I told you about Hits TV, a new channel available where I’m from. It’s a channel that’s devoted to retro television programs. I also told you about the sitcoms I didn’t like and I couldn’t understand why they were so popular before. Well, this week, let’s go look at the comedy programs that I actually enjoyed watching on Hits TV. These are the sitcoms that actually do stand the test of time and deserve to have a strong following!
First up is Taxi. Now, Taxi isn’t a rip-roaring success. In fact, I have to say I find some of the episodes kind of uneventful and boring. However, when the show is good, the show is great! I like that every person on the show has his/her moments to shine. They all have their own little idiosyncrasies that makes them fun to watch. Well, most of them anyway. I don’t really like the “main guy” or the girl. While they do have their moments, they are few and far between. Give me more scenes with Anydy Kaufman, Danny DeVito and Christopher Llyod!
Next, we have Mork & Mindy. The premise of having an alien reporting on the customs of Earth may not be entirely new these days but I think it was pretty unique then. So far, Hits TV has shown only the first 2 or 3 seasons of the show. Truth be told, I only enjoyed the first season of the show.
The first season was, should I say, very loose. I don’t think there was much of a script for Robin Williams (Mork). I think the show’s producers just gave the famed actor an outline of what’s going to happen and he would just ad libbed everything! A few of his improvised jokes didn’t work for me but only a few. Most of them hit their mark! But for some reason, the entire tone of the series changed in Season 2 and, while Robin Williams was still brilliant for the most part, it just didn’t click for me. Still, I say it’s worth seeing just for the first season. It’s not for everyone, I know that.
I also liked Married… with Children. The show is pretty funny! It’s actually nice to see a “family” show (a show that features a family) that aren’t nice to each other. The jokes are so lowbrow, it’s wonderful. It’s weird but that’s what made the show… I don’t know if this is the right word but I’m going to use it anyway… I think that’s why the show is so… charming. Honestly, I can see why this show became a huge hit.
I also like the show because the entire Bundy family are smart aleck, know-it-alls! It’s great to see them get insulted and yet manage to find a way to reply with a really witty comeback! Especially Al Bundy. I think they gave him the best comebacks/insults! It’s is kind of strange to think that the crass and boorish father from Married… with Children is the same guy who plays the rather lovable patriarch of the Prichett clan. Then again, Jay Prichett can be rather lowbrow at times.
Now we’re getting to the really, really good shows! And the first one I have to mention is The Golden Girls. Okay, I had my doubts about the show when my parents told me the premise behind the show. The Golden Girls is about four senior ladies living under one roof. I was expecting to see a lot of “oh, I’m so old” jokes and that would be it. Okay, there are some old jokes, usually at Sophia’s expense, but I’m glad the show never really focused on their age that much. I would say it was a bit like Friends if all of the characters were old ladies.
One of the things the show has for it is that everyone is funny. None of the main cast appear to be funnier than the other. Not only that, the four aforementioned ladies (the incredibly sarcastic Dorothy, her incredibly blunt mother Sophia, the oversexed southern belle Blanche and the dim-witted Rose) work off of each other in a really natural way. They manage to play off each other really well. Really good show.
Finally, we get to the best sitcom of yesteryear. In fact, I would say it’s one of the best shows ever! And that show is Seinfeld. Even after a decade or so, Seinfeld is still really, really, really funny! I kind of like that a lot of the humor remains timeless since they don’t try to make fun of “current day” situations. Rather, they took it upon themselves to actually invent a lot of the humor themselves! I’ve been watching this non-stop ever since they started with Season 1. They’re on Season 5 and it’s still really good!
The cast is pretty much perfect. While they are definitely a wacky group of people, they just take a short step over the line of reality so that they’re still believable and relatable. I know a lot of people see Kramer as their favorite character on the show (and the zaniest person usually is) but I think my favorite is George. He’s funny because, even though he’s extremely paranoid and a loser, he still gets too overconfident whenever things go his way… which usually leads to his downfall. But that doesn’t mean that Elaine and Seinfeld himself aren’t slouches in the laughs department! Everyone pulls their own weight on this show!
Oh, and Newman! God, I love Newman!
So, I have to say there are some sitcoms that I really like. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same thing about the drama and action programs of the 80’s and 90’s. I’ll delve into more detail regarding this next week!
What are your favorite retro sitcoms? Do they still hold up? Let me know what they are in the comments section below!