What's the Best Comedy Block on TV Right Now? (POLL)

Unlike its more serious cousin the drama series, the comedy series almost always rolls with an entourage, at least on the broadcast networks. I'll let you in on a little industry lingo: TV professors and experts refer to the resulting groups of two or more comedies airing back-to-back as "comedy blocks." Obviously the genre's half-hour format makes it easy to pair one sitcom with another, but there's more to crafting a successful comedy block than just slapping two shows together. Format, tone, and the number of funnies per minute should all be considered when building a better block. And when a network succeeds in this endeavor, the result is two BFFs that make each other seem even funnier. Remember The Office and 30 Rock! Or The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Bob Newhart Show? Community and... whatever else NBC paired with it? You get the idea.

Indeed, we're not only living in the Golden Age of Television, we're also living in the Golden Age of Comedy Blocks. So I'm here to stoke the debate of which recent comedy team-up is the best. And I'm not just looking at partnered shows that I personally think are funny, I'm looking at partnered shows that actually work well together. Here are some of the most notable blocks on the air:


New Girl & The Mindy Project (Tuesdays on Fox)

Fox's rom-com coupling is noteworthy for its strong female voice (thanks to New Girl creator Elizabeth Meriwether and Mindy creator and star Mindy Kaling) and shirtless dudes. And while New Girl continues to yo-yo in consistency, The Mindy Project has been improving, according to people I have asked. If you like lady things, relationship jokes, and laughing, this block is for you. Yes, we know that New Girl is presently paired with Weird Loners but that show is in danger of being canceled before you finish reading this article.

Compatibility level: Two peas in a pod!


The Big Bang Theory, The Odd Couple, and Mom (Thursdays on CBS)

It can be difficult to distinguish between CBS comedies because they generally stick to a similar formula: multi-camera, perverted, not that funny. The network has a million permutations to choose from when constructing comedy blocks because it's working with puzzle pieces that are all perfectly square (this is also true of CBS's Monday combo of 2 Broke Girls and Mike & Molly). Because The Odd Couple is the newest comedy in CBS's lineup, it currently has the luxury of nibbling on The Big Bang Theory's scraps by airing after the nerdy hit; as a result, it's the most-watched new comedy of the season. This is definitely a shark-and-remora-fish situation, and a great example of a good-for-business block. Mom is kind of lumped in, but it's kind of floating on its own at the moment since it's paired with Big Bang Theory repeats.

Compatibility level: Like an MBA and hair gel!


Workaholics & Broad City (Wednesdays on Comedy Central)

Beer-guzzling bros and pot-vaping ladies highlight this evening full of substance abuse, pegging, sharting, debauchery, and sundry misadventures. Workaholics might be old news, but Comedy Central has finally found the perfect complement for it in the critically adored Broad City. Another thing that makes this block great is that it's even more fun to watch when you're totally blitzed, which can't be said for most other television programs.

Compatibility level: Like a bong hit and a burrito!


It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia & Man Seeking Woman (Wednesdays on FXX)

After its split with The League, It's Always Sunny rebounded quite nicely with funny freshman comedy Man Seeking Woman. But this matchup is like a jock dating an indie darling, and it doesn't totally work as an equal relationship. Man Seeking Woman's surreal escapades clash a bit with the harsh, jerk-faced, always-be-yelling reality of It's Always Sunny, but nothing except half a bottle of absinthe is going to pair well with Man Seeking Woman. And ultimately, if it's laughter you seek, it's here.

Compatibility level: Like loud-mouthed bros at a Postal Service concert!


Silicon Valley & Veep (Sundays on HBO)

Though HBO is more well known for its thought-provoking, award-winning dramas, the network's decision to take a huge dump on two of the most spoofable professions out there gave us quite a dream team of hilarity. The elder Veep has been doing fine on its own by relentlessly skewering politics, but now that HBO has added Silicon Valley's takedown of the tech industry, the network's Sunday nights are even better. It's hard to name a pair of comedies that share a more similar tone.

Compatibility: Like a senator and a bribe from a tech billionaire! (Good.)


The Comedians & Louie (Thursdays on FX)

Louie is the kind of show that stands on its own because it defies categorization, and indeed, it spent its fourth season carrying its own hour-long comedy block with back-to-back episodes. This season, it's paired with the yukster duo of Billy Crystal and Josh Gad for an up-and-down hour. As a pair, the two series feel like going from reverse directly into fifth gear, but what else could FX do? It has no other comedies to experiment with, so it's like, "Hey let's combine one of the greatest working comedians today with these guys."

Compatibility level: Like your grandfather having coffee with an art-school student!


The Middle, The Goldbergs, Modern Family, and Black-ish (Wednesdays on ABC)

ABC's Wednesdays are the home of broadcast television's current reigning comedy block champ (sorry CBS, Big Bang Theory reruns don't count toward a block). This lineup of family-friendly laughers is like the Mt. Rushmore of comedy blocks, a perfect example of how to thematically build an evening full of lighthearted chuckles. Each show is a family sitcom, but each show is different enough from its peers to feel unique. Remember when ABC tried to use Super Fun Night as the anchor leg here? It tanked, largely because it gave viewers tonal whiplash (and also because it was horrible). Trophy Wife would still be alive today if it'd gotten the 9:30pm timeslot like it deserved.

Compatibility level: Like one big happy cul-de-sac!


Bob's Burgers, The Simpsons, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Family Guy, and The Last Man on Earth (Sundays on Fox)

Fox stuck with Animation Domination for 10 whole years, but broke it up this season with Mulaney. Okay, yes, and Brooklyn Nine-Nine, but come on, Mulaney?!? A decade of tradition foiled for a guy who added a prostate exam gag to his pilot. Mulaney's a goner now, but the network's Sunday-night mega-block is still weird: It goes 'toon, 'toon, single-cam, 'toon, single-cam, which is a lot better than it was with multi-cam Mulaney, but as far as a cohesive comedy block is concerned, this still ain't it.

Compatibility level: Like Who Framed Roger Rabbit? but nauseating.


Which current comedy block do you think is the best?



Comments (99)
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Oct 11, 2015
Since back in the day with Cosby, Roseanne, Sienfeld, Friends, Thursday night ruled. Now after 30 years, it's become Wednesday night.
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Jul 16, 2015
2 Brke Girls,Mike & Molly though Mike & Molyy was better in its first three seasons than after the reboot.BBzt/OC/Mom.AbcFamily has Melussa & Joey & Baby Daddy
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May 12, 2015
My ideal block:
It's always sunny,
Louie,
Veep,
Silicon valley,
Workaholics
new girl
man seeking woman
the comedians
Bobs burgers

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May 12, 2015
Louie is awesome!! So well written. It's always sunny is also really funny. Then you get things like workaholics and the comedians that have some very funny moments. But most of the other sitcoms are carbon copies of other shows, just rehashed with new characters. pretty lame. It's weird that viewers in the US seem to want dumbed down, repetitive comedy rather than genuinely well thought out and well written comedy with originality.
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May 07, 2015
What about Brooklyn Nine Nine? It's by Fox and it's really good. I reckon it can hold it's own with New Girl

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May 12, 2015
Maybe in the first series but now its just boring. The only reason for me to watch brooklyn 99 is Rosa, she is fine.
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May 06, 2015
Bring back legit Fx, jesus
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Apr 28, 2015

ABC Wednesdays and Fox Sundays.

What I watch:
Monday - Deadbeat
Tuesday - Community, Fresh Off the Boat, New Girl
Wednesday - Black-ish, The Goldbergs, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Man Seeking Woman
Thursday - Archer, The Big Bang Theory, Louie
Friday - Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidth
Saturday - No comedy for me.
Sunday - Bob's Burgers, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, The Last Man on Earth, HBO/SHOWTIME comedies
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Apr 28, 2015
I'm a little happier with comedy these days. Our appointment DVRing is:

  • Fresh Off the Boat
  • The Last Man on Earth
  • Blackish
  • Brooklyn 99

We can't seem to get into any of the premium channel's comedies.

We're checking out The Goldbergs. I find it funny but hate when they mess with the timeline, getting stuff out of order. We're still around and we remember what year Duran Duran came out. Oh, and The Bangles.
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Apr 26, 2015
It's clearly Wednesdays on ABC, each gives a different take on a singular theme (family comedy), each is funny on multiple levels, and each one's uniqueness carries to the next, though I've still not gotten back on board with Blackish. But that's a strong block right there, that's a BLOCK, 3 to 4 shows in a row, not just a pairing.

Fox's Sunday feels out of joint, a bit uneven, and tired.

CBS used to own its days, but has let too many shows go at once and filled with junk, now it's a pick-n-choose network, not a block does that make.
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Apr 26, 2015
Wow... reading this list really depresses me about the state of the sitcom

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May 12, 2015
Ye there's maybe three really well written shows on the whole list. And those shows are usually over looked when it comes to awards and coverage. Modern family wins loads because it has two gay guys in it, why? When genuinely well written shows like Louie or Veep are overlooked.
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Apr 24, 2015
The ABC one is my favorite.
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Apr 24, 2015
Louie is the best comedy on TV but The Comedians looks terrible.
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May 12, 2015
Louie is awesome but I was quite surprised about The Comedians. You would think a show starring an aged Billy Crystal and some douchebag from frozen would be terrible, its actually pretty funny. I have laughed out loud to a few things on that show. worth a watch.
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Apr 24, 2015
The best comedy block by far is "Rick and Morty" and whatever plays before or after it.
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May 12, 2015
Rick and morty isnt on air so it doesnt have a block. Is a cool prog tho. 9.2 rating on IMDB!!!!
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Apr 24, 2015
The only one I watch majority of the series' in would be FOX's Sunday night lineup (sans Bob's Burgers). It may not be cohesive - but who wants to watch four series in a row that are very similar? I actually like that they split up Animation Domination with the two live-action series, it reinvigorates every half hour even as the evening goes on.
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Apr 24, 2015
I don't care for the Wednesday comedy block on ABC except for The Goldbergs,which is the funniest show on TV right now.
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Apr 24, 2015
The answer is obviously CSI: Cyber and whatever else airs with CSI: Cyber

MUNDO
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Apr 24, 2015
I was going to say New Girl if you don't watch anything else in its block, but yeah, those Mundo chase scenes are priceless. Almost as fun is when they go into their Powerpoint Holodeck and use wireframe TRON graphics (and literal hand-waving) to explain stuff.
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Apr 24, 2015
House of Lies and Episodes!!
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Aug 21, 2015
I love Episodes!
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May 12, 2015
I agree both are good shows. Criminally overlooked.
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Apr 25, 2015
Episodes gets no respect and is vastly underrated.

After like 4 seasons (or whatever) of watching I am still trying to make up mind on whether or not I actually like House of Lies or not. One character is more horrible than the next.
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Apr 28, 2015
Granted they are all assholes, but they are so fun to watch. Usually I hate that, but in this case, I love it.
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Apr 23, 2015
I picked" other" since the only comedies we watch now are The Big Bang Theory and 2 Broke Girls, we've checked out the rest and find they are all have their own annoying qualities.
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May 12, 2015
You should seriously think about changing what you watch, 2 broke girls is one of the biggest pieces of crap on television and you let your son watch it? wtf. I'd prefer that my kids watched texas chainsaw massacre or silence of the lambs to that bollocks.
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May 13, 2015
he's 19 and I love those movies but he's not into horror unfortunately, he's a sci-fi geek through and through
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Apr 24, 2015
Hold on you watch 2 broke girls and think other shows have annoying qualities. LOOK EVERYONE WE FOUND KAT DENNINGS SECRET TV.COM ACCOUNT. I knew Kat had nothing better to do then spread the rumor that her face and voice weren't the most annoying entity in the galaxy.
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Apr 24, 2015
hardy har har
My son actually got me hooked on the show, he liked Two And A Half Men and he thought 2 Broke Girls was the female equivalent. Now that Men is over we're down to 2 comedies. I do get tired of all the Han short jokes (I'm only 5'3") but it's funny enough to leave on in the background (for me anyways), my son thinks it's hilarious, probably because he now understands what the gross innuendos are.
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Apr 23, 2015
The Middle & The Golbergs. Even though I loooove New Girl & The Mindy Project, I had to pick that one, because The Middle is indisputable to me.
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Apr 23, 2015
Definitely Veep and Silicon Valley but only because Last Week Tonight follows it.
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May 12, 2015
veep, silicon valley then last week tonight? that is a kickass line up!! Im in uk so i have to watch them the next day. grrrr........
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Aug 21, 2015
You guys have great shows, too, that' I'm mighty jealous of!
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Apr 23, 2015
It barely seems fair to consider Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Last Man on Earth as part of a comedy block. First... Have they even aired on the same night? I know they have, but BARELY. B99 has been on hiatus since LMoEs second or so week. And second, they do not fit in with the animation domination theme that fox is known for. I almost consider those to be separate blocks..
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May 12, 2015
youre right i wouldnt consider either programme to be a comedy.
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Apr 23, 2015
I think 'Nurse Jackie' and 'Happyish' will be a strong contender for strongest comedy block.

I'll take 'Cosby', 'Family Ties', 'Cheers' and 'Night Court' with an 'ER' chaser. That's a dream/nightmare many NBC executives have at night when they look at their sad state of affairs. NBC has nothing.
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Apr 24, 2015
agree with you there. except for me take out family ties and add in a couple more. my dream comedy block:

are you being served
friends
golden girls
cheers
cosby
night court
news radio
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Apr 24, 2015
forgot to throw in mom, black-ish and 2 broke girls
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Apr 24, 2015
What how the heck does blackish end up on the same list as cheers in your mind WTF
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Apr 24, 2015
i happen to like it. It;s MY ideal comedy block not your, remember?
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Apr 23, 2015
The poll results looked kind of pale before I left the house. Now that I'm back, they've improved a little.
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Apr 25, 2015
Hahaha. A TV.com commenter left the house. THAT'S funny!
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Apr 23, 2015
even though I only watch The Middle and The Goldbergs, I picked that group.
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Apr 23, 2015
That was such a tough decision. In the end I went with Sunny and Man Seeking Woman because they are both very different and I look forward to them both so much. But Work/Broad, Silicon/Veep and the FOX sunday lineup are all fantastic too.
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Apr 23, 2015
I don't bother with sitcoms anymore.

But FOX's Sunday night animation rests on The Simpsons. Once it goes, the night will probably become all live-action, much the same way NBC's Saturday morning did in the 90s.
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Apr 23, 2015
Yeah, no, I don't even consider any of the comedy blocks on the main list to be watchable. Some individual shows sure, but not the whole block. From the poll I watch both Episodes and House of Lies, but I'm not even sure House of Lies should be considered a comedy.

I think the "golden age" of the comedy block was decades ago, we are in something like the steaming-pile-of-poo age now.
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Apr 23, 2015
The only block in which i watch more than one show is Last Man Standing and Cristela, so i have to vote for that. Neither of those are my favorite show though. But in all other blocks i just watch one show. So my personal comedy block would be:

The Big Bang Theory, Silicon Valley, The Middle, Family Guy, Cristela, Last Man Standing, Weird Loners, American Dad, Community and Other Space.

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Apr 23, 2015
There were times I watched Two and a Half Men during its last season just because it was following Mom. It's kind of like when Without a Trace was following CSI; I often found myself enjoying the newer show (Mom) more than the venerable lead-in. Comedy blocs I might have liked even more in recent years though have been Archer and Legit on Thursday nights and The Daily Show and The Colbert Report.

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Apr 23, 2015
ABC Wednesday is the closest thing we gave to Must See TV of yore. I don't even watch The Middle but I know it has a loyal base. I love both Silocon Valley + Veep but I think ABC deserves credit here for maintaining an entire block of shows, not just a coupling.
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Apr 23, 2015
Ugh, *Silicon
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Apr 23, 2015
there is only 1 block winner here.. Selina Meyer & the 'Optimal Tip-to-Tip Efficiency' formula.

*betcha thinking bout that joke with Selina in the middle...right??/!!

:P - hahahaha..

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Apr 23, 2015
Ugh..basically CBS wins because I am more apt to accidentally watch one of those shows between the BBT and Mom. HBO seems okay, but they both started when I was contemplating getting rid of the channel. Fox, well, I seem to be bipolar with them. I never love them both at once.
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Apr 23, 2015
Undateable & One Big Happy, both hilarious shows.
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Aug 21, 2015
Undateable - hilarious?
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Apr 28, 2015
Oh, ouch, One Big Happy was one big pile of....
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Apr 23, 2015
Honestly my preferred comedy block is Workaholics and It's Always Sunny...however they are on different channels so it doesn't really count. Every single block in that list has a weakness in it I feel like...
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Apr 23, 2015
Love The Middle but don't like the other 3 in the block. Love BBT (still) and Mom so that block wins. I like SV too, but Veep not so much.
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Apr 23, 2015
I only watch Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Silicon Valley out of these shows (used to watch Last Man on Earth but gave up, and have been meaning to catchup on Broad City and Black-ish, and only watch the occasional episode of Family Guy/Simpsons if they look good), so I can't really make a call but decided to go with HBO's anyway because I love SV and I've been hearing excellent things about Veep. All the others have at least one or more that I'm not interested in.

I'll probably end up watching the shows that I intend to catch-up on over the Summer though so I can make a better judgement then.
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Apr 23, 2015
I only watch FOTB, Silicon Valley, Black-ish and Brooklyn Nine-nine out of those shows. So I'm not able to choose a particular block. But if I had to choose, I would probably choose HBO's. Silicon Valley s not your regular joke-cracking comedy. It's a very clever show, and the comedy in it doesn't come from "jokes", and that's what I really like about it. I really really enjoy watching it.
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Apr 23, 2015
I'm sure network execs anguish over them, but the comedy blocks just don't mean as much as they used to. I only watch a few of the shows listed, and only 2 that air next to each other. And those I might watch at different times. The best pair I see is Cristela and Last Man Standing, but I haven't been watching either one.
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Apr 23, 2015
Louie would win if paired with a better show but as a block it's hard to beat Silicon Valley/Veep. Fox is close with a pretty good Sunday night too.
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Apr 23, 2015
Yeah, you really can't choose a block, as there may only be one show that is good, or at least you like. I did choose the ABC block with The Middle, as I also watch Black-ish and therefore has the better group from the rest for me. All else I mostly either can't watch (no premium service), don't watch, or gave up on.
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Apr 23, 2015
There isn't a single block I actually watch truthfully. The only comedies on this list I watch weekly are The Mindy Project and Veep.
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Apr 23, 2015
None of the blocks appeal to me. Most of them have one good show, and the rest are bad.
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Apr 23, 2015
Brooklyn 99 is only one that managed to deliver plenty of very funny jokes each episode.
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May 12, 2015
series one had some funny bits but the new series is terrible. there are no jokes or no funny jokes in each episode.
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Apr 25, 2015
The most stupid series on television. But young people today tend to think stupid = funny. The reason why single-camera series don't have audiences or laugh tracks is the audience wouldn't laugh and there's no place to put a laugh track. The best of these is New Girl which can be amusing but they throw a lot of stupid in there, too (Schmidt washing clothes, etc.). And the title is Brooklyn Nine-Nine as written on the screen. Just to give you some credibility. (And the title is Mary Tyler Moore, the words The and Show were never in the title.)
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Apr 25, 2015
You obviously disagree, which is fine. But one thing I like about Brooklyn Nine-Nine is the fact that while characters are funny they are also good at their jobs. As opposed to shows where characters would be fired within hours for goofing on the job.
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Aug 31, 2015
From what I've seen (which isn't much) I've seen quite a bit of goofing on the job on that series. And I doubt that many policeman would cite the show as realistic at least not on the order of Barney Miller which has been called (by actual New York policemen) the most realistic cop show on television (and which won the best series Emmy in 1982.)
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Aug 31, 2015
I didn't call it realistic. I said they get their jobs done. compare that to other shows where people in office are just screwing around and nobody actually does any work.
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Apr 23, 2015
Broad City and Workahlics. They are the only ones that are consistently funny.
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Apr 23, 2015
Well, the actual blocks that I watch
IASIP and Man Seeking Woman
CBS' TBBT/Odd Couple/Mom
Undateable and One Big Happy

The other blocks I just watch 1 or 2 from them. I can't really pick a stand out.
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Apr 23, 2015
Polls like these aren't really relevant anymore due to the way most of us watch TV these days. Most of us no longer have to be there, in the chair, when stuff is actually on. We don't concern ourselves with time and channel, we just watch what we want, whenever we want. I know I do.
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Apr 26, 2015
The majority of viewers are still traditional though, the numbers still support suffering through ads when the networks want, most people don't even DVR apparently.
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Apr 25, 2015
Exactly. I watch series, not blocks. Even if I watched three sitcoms in a row, it's a coincidence. I would watch the same three shows on different days.
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Apr 23, 2015
Well, at least you included Episodes. That's something, I guess. How can I get an Episodes community? Asking repeatedly sure doesn't work. But we have a Bad Judge community. C'mon!
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Apr 23, 2015
I love The Goldbergs.

Who needs a time machine when you can just kick back and watch an 80s family on TV?
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