4 Funny Shows to Put Back on Your Must-Watch List (Sponsored)
Early fall is like one endless Christmas morning for TV lovers, with nearly every day bringing a shiny new show to unwrap. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend? Just what I was looking for. The Grinder? Oh, TV, you shouldn’t have. Quantico? Had no idea I needed it; suddenly cannot live without it.
But with a crowded field of newcomers vying for your attention, some of those shows you’ve always been meaning to try may have dropped off your radar. Allow us to pencil back in these comedies at the top of your to-do list. (You can thank us later.)
Come for: A family comedy to finally rival Modern Family.
Stay for: black-ish’s singular ability to tackle serious topics without even a hint of self-seriousness.
The gateway episode: “The Word” (Season 2, Episode 1)
The Season 2 opener – in which young Jack (Miles Brown) faces suspension for using the n-word during a talent show performance of Kanye West’s “Gold Digger” – is a perfect illustration of black-ish’s refreshing penchant for steering into dangerous territory instead of around it.
Come for: Andy Samberg in his first post-SNL role.
Stay for: A big-hearted workplace comedy, AKA your best chance to fill that Parks and Recreation-shaped hole in your life.
The gateway episode: “The Bet” (Season 1, Episode 13)
Though Samberg’s goofball detective Peralta and his straitlaced partner Santiago (Melissa Fumero) dominate the A-plot – a callback to a wager made in the pilot – “The Bet” gives every member of Nine Nine’s deep bench of carefully drawn supporting characters a chance to make you LOL.
The Last Man on Earth
Come for: A post-apocalyptic premise that includes more margarita pools (2) than zombies (0).
Stay for: The absurdist but poignant examination of loneliness and human connection. Also, margarita pools.
The gateway episode: “Alive In Tucson” (Season 1, Episode 1)
One of the giddiest, most compulsively watchable pilots in recent memory, it’s also a feat of world-building efficiency.
Come for: The charmingly charmless take on New York City, people, and the people who live in New York City – plus a casual parade of guest stars (Amy Sedaris! Gabourey Sidibe!! Martin Short!!!) that somehow avoids the scent of gimmickry.
Stay for: An acid-tongued rebuke to aspirational, Taylor Swift-ified versions of New York in which people are nice to tourists and urine isn’t literally everywhere.
The gateway episode: “Pilot” (Season 1, Episode 1)
Difficult People is only one season and eight episodes old, so there’s no excuse, really, not to start at the beginning. If you don’t start at the beginning you’ll miss lines like “I was told I can’t have children… because I hate them.” Start at the beginning.