Three camera sitcoms, in case you don't remember, dominated the prime time lineups from the 70s to the 90s and even the 2000s. With their bland ensemble casts and laugh tracks telling you when to find something funny, it is almost as though they are designed to turn off your brain. This is probably why we find it so difficult to remember a damn thing about any of them. Fortunately for those of us without the disposable income or double digit IQ to own seasons on DVD, there are publicity stills. Among the goofiest bullshit generated by goofy bullshit factories, these publicity stills have given Cody an opportunity to take us on a comprehensive, if sometimes misleading, trip down misrememory lane.
#12. Tiny Couch
If I recall correctly, this was about two newly-married couples who moved into the same couch. They had differences that were mostly related to the clothes they all chose to wear, and the episodes often focused on the two couples dealing with those differences. I remember one particularly entertaining episode, 5N14 - Get Off My Couch, You Hatless Fuck. Punches are thrown, but only between the two wives. Like all episodes, the two wives eventually make amends, get a little silly, and super glue their skulls together.
#11. Attack of the Smiling Zombies!
If you were a fan of this show, you probably called it Zmile! for short. Zmile! is about a high-strung photographer who ends up taking pictures of, trading quips with, and battling a horde of smiling zombies. One thing that is apparently scarier than regular zombies? Smiling zombies. They called Zmile! a sitcom, but how could you possibly not think smiling zombies are terrifying? These zombies are excited about and delighted to eat your brains! At least with normal zombies it seems like they’re bored with the whole ordeal. This show continues to give me nightmares, although it's still way better than the show it originated from, Where Everybody Knows Your Brains.
#10. Dessert Buddies
#9. Howard The Duck
This even-more-live-action-than-Howard-The-Duck remake of Howard The Duck starred an unknown actor as the titular duck. It was a ballsy move not bothering to put on feathers, but the actor still sold it. It went on for three seasons of one episode each and the episodes varied in length, so it ended up being exactly as long as the original movie. In fact, I think it was a shot-for-shot remake. In fact, I'm definitely thinking of the original movie.
I can’t believe Boyfuckers is still on the air. Seriously, does anybody even watch this televomit? Sure, this episode (5F09 - Don’t Tell Anyone) was a little funny, but how many times can you have the same grown men fuck the same little boy and keep it fresh? To make matters worse, they took out the laugh track in season 6 and it just made everything even more uncomfortable than it already was.
Great theme song, though.
Boyfuckers gettin’ ya down?
Just typing it out doesn’t do it justice, but I’m sure you remember how it goes.
#7. The Kid Who Could Walk, But Didn't
If you've just seen the pilot episode, you probably think this show is pretty tragic. However, I urge you to check out reruns if you can. The pilot ends with Kid Josh getting hit by a car being driven by Adult Josh. You find out early on in episode 2 that Kid Josh survives. His ability to walk is not affected in any way, although his ability to communicate (through any means) is mysteriously lost. Because of this, Adult Josh and his three black servants all think Kid Josh is paralyzed. They carry him around wherever they go. Eventually Kid Josh learns that it's fun to be carried around, so he stops trying to explain to everyone that he can still walk. The finale features a second grotesque car accident and it restores Kid Josh's ability to speak and write. His ability to walk is still unaffected. The last lines of the whole series are "But, Kid Josh, even though you couldn't speak or write, if you had just stood up once we would have easily inferred that you could walk" and "Oh."
#6. The Nautical Weirdo, The Scientist, The Woman They Share, And Their Two Ghost Kids
This show was just bizarre. Its title kept changing in order to accommodate for the new characters and plot twists. The Nautical Weirdo, The Scientist, The Woman They Share, And Their Two Ghost Kids is the shortest version of the title available. The pilot episode (not pictured) was only about those five characters, but then they started visiting the gates of Hell and fighting N-dimensional wish-granting imps. The plot itself was really radass, but the exceedingly daunting length of the ever-changing title made the show difficult to discuss or even mention. Ratings plummeted. In my opinion, the show was at its best when it was called The Nautical Weirdo, The Scientist, The Woman They Share, Their Two Ghost Kids, The Evil Versions Of Those Ghost Kids, Their Pet Cyberdog, And The Talking Portrait Of The Nautical Weirdo All Battle The Scientist's Self-Aware Neckties On The Planet Of Infinite Feelings. Unfortunately, it was canceled soon after that and replaced with a spinoff, The Talking Portrait Of The Nautical Weirdo, which was a huge success.
BBQuackers is the titular duck in this classic "humanoid alien duck lives with a disgustingly mismatched couple and they have barbecues a lot" story. The show was shot with a live audience and a live laugh track. It was also unabashedly racist, but each episode was riddled with severe technical problems, so no one really noticed. In general, BBQuackers really broke down the barriers of what sitcoms could do. For one, there was a lot of magic and science fiction involved in the main character's back story, which was mostly unheard of at the time. However, the show was mainly progressive in terms of smuttiness. Not only was there constant use of the f-word throughout the series, but the last three seasons were called BBQuackers And The One Boob That Brushes Up Against Him During Grill Time. It's the only show to ever have the word "boob" in the title except for the short-lived cop drama, Donny Boob: Cunt Detective.
And speaking of incredibly racist shows ...
#4. We Are Indifferent About Our Monkey
I’m not surprised this went on for ten seasons, because so much of America is fucking racist. Seriously, the casting for this show is just offensive on so many levels. Why would they name the dad Lu Ping and cast a white dude? It was an easy script change, but for some reason they insisted on claiming the show was about a stereotypical Asian family. To the show's credit, the monkey was always hilarious.
Even though Bait Shop was horribly acted, it featured some of the best one-liners on TV ever. I was particularly fond of “Do you want some ketchup for your bait?” That one is definitely classic, although "Or maybe some mustard, stupid?” is pretty good, too. Out of all the turdish performances the show had to offer, the best actor was definitely the horse that played all of the actors' mouths. It’s not a surprise Bait Shop won Best Makeup for every year it was on the air.
#2. Makin' Faces
Makin' Faces is my favorite UK import of the last fifteen years. Set at an ultra-hip boarding school, it's about a crusty old drag queen who tries hilariously to keep four best friends in line. Whenever the crusty old drag queen has her back turned, you guessed it, these chickadees make some hilarious faces and undermine her authority to the max. If you never liked the show, you clearly didn't get it, because above are just a few of the faces the girls make. So yeah, I think I proved my point about Makin' Faces.
#1. What Show Is This? Benson?
This is the best meta sitcom I am aware of. What Show Is This? Benson? managed to reunite the entire cast of what I think is Benson. It mostly featured characters asking things like "What show is this? Benson?" and "Does it make me more or less racist that I only recognize the black guy?" This particular photo is important to the legacy of the show because of how utterly bone-chilling it is. The girl in the red outfit, you see, was not there when the picture was taken. They eventually made a movie about it called The Haunting of What Show Is This? Benson?Shows I only remember the titles of...
Fireman Ruins Dinner Every Night
There Were This Many Characters On Perfect Strangers?
Men Hold Fish Like This, Women Hold Fish Like This
What's The Deal With All These Invisible Backs Of Chairs?
The Single Guy
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