Funny HaHa or Funny Peculiar  

Fallic40 53M
3214 posts
2/3/2006 12:01 pm
Funny HaHa or Funny Peculiar

I have to admit that although I live alone and tend to be somewhat anti-social, I really do not watch that much television. I have many other things that I tend to amuse myself with such as music, collecting Warhammer figures and other toy soldiers (very geeky, I admit: but it is a lifetime obsession) and reading and writing.

That being said, I love to laugh. I laugh very easily, as most Irish do. (We also cry easily too.) I laugh very loudly and I laugh with my whole body. I do not watch that many sitcoms on television as, to be blunt, they tend to be very formulaic and not overly funny or amusing.

There are however, some sitcoms sets in my DVD collection. I can watch these endlessly and I will always laugh. My daughters love all of these and my parents watch all of these and love (most of) them also. That is one of my criterions for a good sitcom: it has to be universal. They also have to be consistently interesting with strong writing and characters that you fall in love with. And, they have to be funny: I love pratfalls and physical comedy as much as I love subtle wordplay. I also have the advantage of watching both American and British television so I felt compelled to draw from both mediums ‒ especially since most of the British comedies mentioned have played on television here.

And since I have been down with the flu this week and also down with a bad back, I have spent much more time than usual watching television. So I dug out some of my DVD sets and enjoyed watching programs that I have not watched lately.

There were several shows that only just fell out of my list. These would include Everyone Loves Raymond, Laverne & Shirley, The Young Ones, Coupling (the British version) and Last of the Summer Wine. All are brilliant shows. But now to what makes a funny guy laugh.

10 Malcolm in the Middle I watch this show both in reruns and as the new shows emerge. It is one of the most caustic and subtle shows out there. The character of Hal, the father, might be the best, most realistic, father on television. Ida, Lois’ mother, is the most evil character ever devised for any television show. Please note that this family’s front lawn has never been anything less than Saharan. I always expect to see Bedouins crossing it on camel back.

9 Mr. Bean Rowan Atkinson is a comedic genius. He makes this list twice. He did things in this show that were most reminiscent of Harold Lloyd in their brilliance. Watch him paint a room by masking every single item that does not get painted and then explode a can of paint, or get his new recliner home by tying it to the top of his mini and reworking all the controls so that he can drive car from the rooftop recliner. To this day I watch this in a sense of disbelief.

8 The Simpsons It is still great to watch after all this time. The new shows are, in many cases, even better than the old shows. And even though the characters are all animated, I love them more than many real characters on television.

7. M*A*S*H* Even though it is now mostly relegated to the Hallmark Channel, it is still one of the most thought provoking comedies. My youngest daughter has fallen in love with the show and would happily adopt Radar. Perhaps, in these current times of a falsely prosecuted war based on fear and paranoia, it is very, very relevant. The episode where Henry Blake was killed on his way home from the war is still the best sitcom:episode ever made.

6. Fawlty Towers My favorite show when I was growing up. Hotlelier extraorinaire Basil Fawlty is truly a repulsive character and was very representative of all the changes going on in the UK in the 70s. He despises anyone foreign, anyone female and, in fact, anyone who is not named Basil Fawlty. If anyone other than John Cleese had attempted to play this character, it would not have worked. Watching concussed Basil saluting German tourists and thinking the war was back on should have been repulsive ‒ it was incredibly funny.

5. I Love Lucy 50 years later and the physical comedy is still insanely funny. This show pushed the physical comedy brilliance of Laverne & Shirley off of my list. This is the show that created all the clich├ęs that other shows now contain.

4. Night Court This show was the one show that I watched in the ‘80s. It was just funny and it was original. Unfortunately I do not have any of these shows on DVD yet.

3. Blackadder If anyone in this country tried to do to American history what Rowan Atkinson did to 800 years of British history, they would be castigated, castrated and other forms of “ated” that would make the devil sit up and go “Oh fuck, that’s ‘orrible”. To see performers such as Hugh Laurie, Miranda Richardson and Rowan Atkinson create an alternate British universe for the Middle Ages, the Tudors et al is genius. The fact that it is very funny is an added bonus.

2. Absolutely Fabulous Has a more loathsome character than Patsy ever been created? This show uses excessive drinking, recreational drugs, every neurosis under the sun and very bad fashion in every episode. Patsy and Edina are complete slags and very proud of it. When you throw in the very conservative, prude, and uptight daughter, there was a complete character switch that was the heart of the story. Jennifer Saunders’ genius as a writer is that she knew when to stop writing. Because there are so few episodes, every one is a gem. My personal favorite is when Patsy sold the daughter to a Bedouin chief in Morocco

1. Frasier This show should have run a season or two and died through lack of ideas and direction. Instead, the shows got better and better each year and the characters were funnier and funnier. The writing is incredible and the character of Dr. Niles Crane is my favorite sitcom:character of all time. This show makes me laugh out loud all of the time. I especially like some of the last episodes when Daphne’s brother Simon is around. This is a show that was revered in the UK for its brilliance. If that is not an endorsement then I do not know what is.

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I also have to admit that I find Will and Grace to be the most annoying show I have ever seen. I find most of the characters grating and would rather listen to fingernails on a chalkboard than listen to Karen whine about booze and valium. It is even more annoying than Mork and Mindy.


papyrina 51F
21133 posts
2/3/2006 2:09 pm

i enjoy Mash,Friends,Last of the Summer Wine. The Two Ronnies and what was it called the series with del boyfawlty towers and mr bean hubby loves


I'm a

and
i'm here to stay


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/3/2006 2:36 pm

Hi papy, things are good in Greece I trust. You know, I could not decide what to do about Friends. In some ways I really liked it and in many ways I did not. I just couldn't justify moving one of these programmes out to make room for it. It would make a top 20 though.

I think the show with Del boy was "Only Fools and Horses" which is one I haven't seen; although I have heard it is really funny. I also loved the recently deceased Ronnie Barker of "The Two Ronnies" in "Porridge" but that show did not age well.


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/3/2006 8:32 pm

Lips, could you imagine what would have happened if Ab Fab had been written by a man? He would have beem labelled as the ultimate misogynist and burned in effigy by every feminist group in existence.


impish_pixie 54F
6867 posts
2/3/2006 10:53 pm

Have you not seen "Scrubs"? I love it...

I make mistakes, I am out of control & at times hard to handle. But if you can't handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don't deserve me at my best. ~Marilyn


Sister_Act_4_You 37F/37F

2/4/2006 1:11 pm

have you ever seen an older show called "doctor in the house" - i believe it is from about 30 yrs ago and did not run terribly long; a friend had it on tapes and it was hilarious (in the same mode as that of "fawlty towers") however, i've never heard of it, nor seen it again!


rm_jayR63 59F
1884 posts
2/4/2006 8:23 pm

You certainly have been a sick boy lately. The Simpsons is the best show wver. Night court is currently shown on TV Land which is, by the way, where I live.


Fox4aKnight1 43F

2/5/2006 4:21 am

Mr. Bean and night court ......two of my Faves ....I use to watch MP the flying circus .......but I quit watching ....and actually went to the muppet how ....as they we aa tad bit sillier and had some better quips from time to time. I am talking bout the old muppet show not the new one. LOL. That is all I can think of opsssssss wait the Carol bunett Show I did get a kick out of too. *G*


PailsDiverHonks 55F

2/5/2006 7:12 pm

Awe man...I like Will and Grace


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/5/2006 7:44 pm

hi Jay, how are you doing?. I will have to go looking for the Night Court reruns on TV land.


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/5/2006 7:47 pm

hi Fox, I think my favourite Muppet Show was the show with Elton John doing Crocodile Rock. I didn't include The Carol Burnett Show as I didn't see it as a sit-com. However, there are moments of complete and total brilliance in the Carol Burnett Show. She is a genius and the rest of the ensemble were equally brilliant.


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/5/2006 7:51 pm

imp, I haven't watched scrubs. My oldest daughter watches it though and raves about it.


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/5/2006 7:53 pm

lips, I hadn't considered the queen angle. And I know a couple of queens who worship Patsy and Edina.


rm_titsandtires 51M/41F
3656 posts
2/7/2006 10:00 pm

Malcolm in the Middle - one of my favorites. So now I have some trivia for you about it... What's the tie between "Little House on the Prairie" and "Malcolm in the Middle"? Any guesses?

tires


Fox4aKnight1 43F

2/8/2006 4:36 pm

Fallic I guess Crol Burnett wasn't really a sitcom .....but yes the whole cast of her show was funny....plus One that I watched for a while and still gets me to laughing is Grace under Fire.......due tot he fact that I live in the south and I love Sarcastic umor. And I tell you Grace manages that. LOL I did like the Elton John show but got a real kick out of the Star Wars one too. Specially the neat and fun Pigs in Space segment of that. LOLOLOL I use to have that on my computer but I lost it because my poor computer crashed and burned due to harddrive meltdown....


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/8/2006 7:39 pm

tires, I have no idea except that Hal seems to cry in every episode just like Pa Ingalls.


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/8/2006 7:41 pm

sil, I don't think there is a bad episode of Mr. Bean: although the movie left a lot to be desired. My mum is a Coronation Street fanatic.


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/8/2006 7:42 pm

shaye, I have watched several episodes of Everyone Hates Chris and it is really funny. I love the name of his school: Corleone Jr. High.


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/8/2006 7:45 pm

greeneyes, I will not heap scorn and derision upon you for liking Will and Grace. I have many close friends who love that show. For the same reason there are so many beers in the world, there are just as many sitcoms. There has to be something for everyone.


rm_titsandtires 51M/41F
3656 posts
2/8/2006 10:19 pm

Linwood Boomer, the creator of Malcolm, played Adam Kendall, Mary's husband (the blind sister) I'm so full of useless trivia, it scares me.

tires


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/10/2006 10:40 am

tires, that is a good one. I would never have gotten there in a lifetime of guesses. What is your favourite episode. The show where Dewey wrote an opera about Hal and Lois buying a new bed was my favourite. The shows have gotten better and better over the last few seasons as the show is less about Malcolm and more about the entire family.

Also, Stevie........Canarbon...........is the .........best buddy...........ever put...........into a..........tele................vision..............show.


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/10/2006 10:43 am

Fox, what sets the Carol Burnett show apart for me is when I watch the cast talk about each other and performing together. The outakes and the mistakes are some of the best perfromances by comedians I have ever seen. What comes to mind is Tim Conway talking about an elephant (live) while everyone else is trying not collapse in hysterical laughter.


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/10/2006 10:49 am

Hi Shaye, hopefully you are, like Tiller, out and enjoying some sun today. I have the fortune of being able to include some of the british sitcoms in my list. Many of the US shows are adapted from british shows - some succesfully and some not so succesfully. You should try to find some Fawlty Towers or Last of the Summer Wine videos at the library. Keeping Up Appearances is also extremely funny.

You are also a devotee of the classic sitcoms. I continually find myself watching them as well. Like I said, I love to watch I Love Lucy. Barney Miller was a show that I had forgotten about and it would be in my top 20.


Fallic40 53M
1858 posts
2/10/2006 10:53 am

sister, I vaguely remember Doctor In The House when I was growing up in the early 70s. I have never come across any tapes of it though. As I recall, it was very funny.


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