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A Reader of Fictions: Top Ten (Eleven) Most Awesome Half Hour Shows

A Reader of Fictions

Book Reviews for Just About Every Kind of Book

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Top Ten (Eleven) Most Awesome Half Hour Shows

I kind of got really lazy and haven't managed to do one of these in a while, but I thought it was time I get back to it. Today I share my love of television shows. They're great, because they can have so much more story and build on themselves so much more than a movie, but they do so in nice digestable little chunks.

There tends to be a pretty serious divide between the half hour long programs and the hour long ones. For one thing, half hour shows tend to be comedies, whereas hour long shows tend to be dramas. This does not always hold true, but, for this reason, I'm dividing them up into two lists. Well, that and I can honor more awesome shows this way. Also, I couldn't narrow it down any more than 11, so just deal.

Honorable Mentions (shows that are awesome for only so long): Weeds (good for only three seasons), Parks and Recreation (amazing only after two fairly boring seasons - thank you Adam Scott for making me adore this show), 3rd Rock from the Sun (haven't watched all the seasons yet, but I've heard some worrisome things about the later ones, Avatar (took me a while to get super into this and I never liked Aang)

Just fyi, order means little in this list. These shows all rock.

11. Party Down

What makes this show so awesome is the Veronica Mars love. Pretty much every Veronica Mars cast member appears in at least one episode, including the charming Kristen Bell. Plus, the show is funny in its own right, with a cast led by Adam Scott, Jane Lynch and Ken Marino.

10. It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

This is a show I expected to hate. Really, I still expect to hate it pretty much every time, because all of the people on this show are completely awful. The show works because it's pretty much pitch perfect; I think it has to be. Also, the friendships between these incredibly terrible people are so real and believable. I highly recommend this to anyone that's not easily offended.

9. Better Off Ted

Sadly, Better Off Ted got only two seasons before getting the axe. This happens to a lot of the best shows (see Party Down and Pushing Daisies) and they're the lucky ones. Better Off Ted has a great cast, including the magnificent Portia del Rossi. The humor is somewhat reminiscent of Arrested Development. This one isn't known too well, but it definitely should be.

8. Arrested Development

Without a doubt, this is one of the best and funniest shows of all time. However, I warn you that it is very different than most shows. The humor is sly, not particularly obvious, and liable to go over some people's heads (thus only three seasons). Plus, it builds on itself, meaning that the first few episodes are not as funny as the others, since you do not yet know the gags and family dynamics. Make sure you give this one a chance before giving up.

7. Community

Community captured my love from its first episode. Who doesn't love watching Joel McHale judge people? No one I want to be friends with, that's for sure. This is another show that's made by the friendship dynamics. Unfortunately, it's not perfect, what with the annoying Britta-Jeff-Annie love triangle and the fact that the writers clearly don't always know what to do with Pierce's character. However, all of that is completely worth it for the friendship between Abed and Troy, perfect moments like the oldwhitemansays Twitter, and paintball episodes.

6. Modern Family

For some reason, I rather vocally decided that I hated Modern Family. I think because I saw part of an episode in the middle of an episode and didn't like it, because I did not know the characters. Everyone's quirky and annoying, it's true. However, they grow on you. I have only watched season one and am pretty much desperate to get through season two so I can catch up. Damn Netflix for raising their prices and making me stop getting discs!

5. 30 Rock

Like with Arrested Development, this is a show that has to grow on you. When I first watched it, I only made it partway through season one before giving up on it. The second time, I forced myself through season one and then suddenly discovered that I adored the show. You're thrown into this weird environment with really strange people and odd dynamics. Only when you get used to them can you really appreciate the humor and charm of the show.

4. Cowboy Bebop

I totally love anime and I doubt whether I will ever love another more than Cowboy Bebop. Honestly, I could love this only for the soundtrack, but I also love it for its dark humor (and sometimes light humor) and its crazy ensemble. I really hope that the rumor of a movie version starring Keanu Reeves never comes to pass.

3. Coupling

When I was in high school, I completely adored Friends, which is noticeably absent from this list. Coupling is similar in some ways, but way better. The Brits are just so funny. How do they do it? My favorite moment is, without a doubt, Steve's rant about cushions. He's right; they are "chubby little bastards."

2. The IT Crowd

Nerd love! From the posters on the wall of their office to, well, pretty much everything Moss and Roy say, the sheer nerdiness of this British sitcom makes me incredibly happy. For example, there's the Dungeons and Dragons episode in the fourth season, which always makes me giggle. I totally ship Jen and Roy. Hopefully, something happens for them in season five, which is to be the last season. Since it's British, there are only six episodes a season, so there's really no excuse for not watching them.

1. M*A*S*H

This is a comedic classic. M*A*S*H perfectly balances some seriously tough messages about war and completely hilarious goofball comedy. The cast truly makes this. The beginning cast is great, but some of them get replaced as the show moves along. At first, I was skeptical of each, but, ultimately, the show actually got better with the addition of B.J. Hunnicut, Colonel Sherman Potter and Charles Winchester III. So much love.

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Blogger S.E. Andres said...

I approve of this list.

September 28, 2011 at 10:18 PM  
Blogger mimz said...

I really like this list. I was waiting patiently to see if Community will be on it and I'm so glad it is! :D Parks&Rec is pretty awesome, although I have to admit that S1 was really boring to me. I only kept watching because people claimed how great it was and S2 was definitely better! :D

March 31, 2012 at 6:05 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

I didn't like Parks & Rec until season three. I hated that one guy, whose name I have apparently blocked out of my memory, but he left and in exchange we got Chris and Ben. Actually, a lot of my love for Parks & Rec comes from my love for Ben. I want a Ben in my life. Sigh.

March 31, 2012 at 11:01 AM  
Anonymous Christina Kit. said...

Love Arrested Development!

These lists are so great:)

April 1, 2012 at 6:36 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

Glad you like them! I'm working on a new one now.

April 1, 2012 at 8:14 PM  
Blogger Owl In A Cloak said...

I love Cowboy Bebop! All of these shows on the list (except CB, 30 Rock and Modern Family) don't show in my country so my top 7 goes like-
7- Modern Family
6- 30 Rock
5- Two and a Half Men
4- Cowboy Bebop
3- How I Met Your Mother
2- Friends
1- Big Bang Theory

April 6, 2012 at 3:06 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

Awww, I like those shows too, but they just could not defeat my love for these shows. They're great, though!

April 6, 2012 at 10:35 AM  
Blogger Angela Holland said...

I have not heard of some of these shows. Thank you for posting your list

May 4, 2012 at 6:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No Seinfeld?!?

October 29, 2012 at 8:35 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

No Seinfeld, both because there are a lot of shows I love a lot, and because I haven't seen a lot of Seinfeld. I like it a lot, but I don't think it's quite to fangirl level.

October 30, 2012 at 10:37 AM  

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