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(BBC)   The Office beats Fawlty Towers as Brits choose the funniest sitcom of all time. Somehow, Friends beat out Monty Python on the same list   (news.bbc.co.uk) divider line 374
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14935 clicks; posted to Main » on 07 Mar 2005 at 12:24 AM (9 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2005-03-07 11:06:42 AM
This post is worthless with "Jeeves and Wooster"

As you wish, sir
 
2005-03-07 11:06:43 AM
I LOVED "The Office", but the transplanted version will be teh suxxor, no question. A major reason will be executing it in front of a live audience and adding laugh tracks. The original's charm came from it's documentary feel, much like Spinal Tap's did.

They tried to re-make Fawlty Towers American style as well, I think it lasted 2 episodes, which was 2 more than it should have. There have been successful transplants/re-made American versions of Britcoms, but not very many. Off the bat, only three come to mind: The Lucy Show, (Life Without George) Sanford and Son (was Steptoe and Son in U.K.) and All In The Family (I think, not 100 percent on that one).

In the mode of Fawlty Towers, the American "Curb Your Enthusiasm" is perhaps the closest spiritual kin, and in some ways it's better, because it doesn't have the laugh track. We watch episodes evolve from the smallest premise to gargantuan misunderstandings and horrific situations and we writhe with the horror and discomfort at the same time we're laughing that it's not us, something that Cleese's Fawlty Towers did so well.
 
2005-03-07 11:09:48 AM

Gross oversight. Not funnier than Monty Python, and consistantly, a hell of alot funnier than Friends.

Lister: "So what do you think of Wilma."
Cat: "Wilma Flintstone? I think out a doubt Wilma Flintstone is the sexiest woman alive."
Lister: "What about Betty?"
Cat: "Betty Rubble? Well, I'd go with her. [sighs]But I'd be thinking of Wilma."
Lister: "This is crazy! I can't believe her talking about going with Wilma Flintstone.
Cat: "Yeah, this is an insane conversation."
[time passes]
Lister: "She'd never leave Fred and we know it."
Cat: "Nope"
 
2005-03-07 11:10:38 AM
RooBoy:

What about 'The Goodies'

I remember watching the episode Kitten Kong back in the early 70s, and when the kitty climbed the tower and it fell over it was truly the funniest thing I'd ever seen at the time.
 
2005-03-07 11:14:43 AM
 
2005-03-07 11:15:02 AM

What, no "Mama's Family"?


Just kidding - I love, love, love The Office - best.sitcom.ever.

 
2005-03-07 11:17:10 AM
People Like Us
The Office (Original version)
Little Britain
Da Ali G Show
Coupling (Original Version)
Keeping up Appearances
Red Dwarf
Phoenix Nights
Eurotrash
Ban This Filth
Max & Paddy's Road to Nowhere
Monty Python's Flying Circus
Kids in the Hall (Love that Canuck humor)
Trailer Park Boys (The part I miss most about living in Canada)

The only American show that I have found entertaining is The Amazing Race...the one US show that I would watch and it is not shown over here...normally I hate reality tv but that show rocked...
 
2005-03-07 11:22:55 AM
NOBODY expects the spani... Oh S***!
 
2005-03-07 11:24:56 AM
Has everyone forgotten a Channel 4 show called Absolutely (NOT to be confused with Ab Fab)?

Here's a cut and paste badness link for those who remember.

http://www.absolutelyandy.com/absolutely/

It's the next best thing after the flying circus, IMO.
 
2005-03-07 11:31:35 AM
1curb your enthusiasm
2the office
3chapelle show
4all in the family
5taxi
6mr show
7da ali g show (us, hbo)
9the young ones
9sanford and son
10cheers

sketch comedy is 75% SITUATIONAL. borat stuff is situtional isnt it?
 
2005-03-07 11:32:59 AM
Where is
 
2005-03-07 11:33:06 AM
You yellow bastards!
SOAP! WKRP!
That is all.
You all make me sick.
 
2005-03-07 11:34:25 AM


What about the D?
 
2005-03-07 11:39:41 AM
zchamu

I almost forgot about the Vicar Of Dibley. Dawn French rocks.
 
2005-03-07 11:40:00 AM
CBC's "The Newsroom" Nuff' said.
 
2005-03-07 11:41:25 AM
I disagree with what people have said about David Brent being likable. The really British thing about his charachter is that he is a total asshole and I have no sympathy for him whatsoever.

Bollocks. If you didn't get a little happy warm feeling in your belly when David Brent told Finchie off, defending the honor of his lady in the final episode, you're dead inside.

And don't even get me started on the kiss.

/Father Ted rules as well

Father Dougal: Our Father, who art in Heaven...

(pause)

Father Ted: Hallowed...
 
2005-03-07 11:42:56 AM
"don't mention the war..."
 
2005-03-07 11:45:37 AM
It also works in reverse. I remember seeing "That 70's Show" the British version and I can honestly say I couldn't sleep that night it was sooooooooooooooo terrible!!!!
 
2005-03-07 11:47:22 AM
Well, to be fair, the American version of That 70's Show sucked pretty badly already.
 
2005-03-07 11:50:29 AM
The only American show that I have found entertaining is The Amazing Race...the one US show that I would watch and it is not shown over here...normally I hate reality tv but that show rocked...


I think because it is a reality show that doesn't depend/focus on backstabbing and scheming as it's focal point.

The one thing that I hate about AR is that a 12 hour lead can be quashed by a building not opening till 9am. Which is not a porblem perse, but if they start a leg of the race at 10pm, and the building doesn't open till 9am, everyone is instantly tied again. Makes you wonder why you'd bother being first a lot of the time, apart from the free trip.
 
2005-03-07 11:50:59 AM
My favorite ever episode of Coupling was "The Woman with Two Breasts"..I'll second the motion that Coupling died at the end of Season 3 when Jeff left. He added so many things to my vocabulary: The Giggle Loop, the Melty Man, the Sock Gap, etc...

The Office is about to be another in a long, long line of Great BBC Comedies that we Americans have F'ed up. Anyone else notice most of the crappy BBC remakes have been on NBC? Can we find a way to give them to another network?
 
2005-03-07 11:52:46 AM
Friends is really a fairly appalling bit of tripe. When I've seen bits of it, I've felt a great disturbance in my head, as if millions of brain cells suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.
 
2005-03-07 11:53:16 AM
I've heard it said that the reason Brit shows aren't shown on primetime network is that it's against the law to show foreign -produced shows on network TV in the US. Hence Monty Python, Red Dwarf...you name it have aired on PBS or minority networks such as BBC America.

\No proof
 
2005-03-07 11:56:06 AM
Apples and oranges.

Folks that are trying to compare the regurgitated pap that comprises 85% of what's offered today to the groundbreaking and risky offerings 30+ years ago are sorely misguided. Most of the younger viewers are not going to understand WHY the Python (and other like-minded groups) material was groundbreaking because they have no point of reference to the era that the Python crew were skewering.

Also lumping sketch shows into 'best' lists with the traditional sitcom format doesn't make sense either.
 
2005-03-07 11:56:35 AM
They 'American-ized' Fawlty Towers 3 times.

- "Snavely" w/ Harvey Korman & Betty White. This never made it past its pilot episode

- "Amanda" w/ Bea Arthur, of all people, to be the Basil Fawlty crux of the show. Lasted a few shows, mercifully.

- "Payne" w/ John Larroquette. Promising premise, but lousy on the translation. Manuel character turned to a non-discript Middle Eastern character where it was too politically correct to be the brunt of Basil-like abuse. Wife (JoBeth Williams) not nearly the brutal Sybil-like task master. In short, a watered-down Americanized version, which is a shame, as probably John Larroquette is the closest person to be an American Basil Fawlty. Always looking forward to his next on-screen work, even if the show stinks.

All in the Family is definately the best Brit-to-US translation w/ Three's Company coming in a near second place.

Damn, I miss John Ritter! A physical slapstick genius.
 
2005-03-07 11:58:51 AM
2005-03-07 11:09:48 AM dillo

Red Dwarf is excellent! Sadly, I haven't seen it in ages.

Another rather bizarre but excellent show that I haven't seen in a while is The Red Green Show... I don't think it's a particularly well known show though.
 
2005-03-07 12:01:13 PM
Would anyone like a poptart?
 
2005-03-07 12:03:51 PM
Darling Fascist Bullyboy.

Give me some more money, you bastard.

May the seed of your loin be fruitful in the belly of your woman.

Neil.
 
2005-03-07 12:11:53 PM
smeg heads
 
2005-03-07 12:12:41 PM
 
2005-03-07 12:13:09 PM
"Darling Fascist Bullyboy.

Give me some more money, you bastard.

May the seed of your loin be fruitful in the belly of your woman.

Neil."


If that doesn't work, I don't know what will.
 
2005-03-07 12:14:04 PM
Can't believe it took so long for Phoenix Nights to be mentioned. That is classic stuff.

Anyone interested in hearing some other stuff by Ricky Gervais, here's a link to the archives of his radio show. It's him, Stephen Merchant (The Office co-writer and 'Oggie') and the producer Karl Pilkington.
And Karl's probably the funniest of the 3.
 
2005-03-07 12:14:08 PM
I'm sure in the previous 300 comments, someone's had to have said this, but just in case they haven't...

Friends beats Monty Python, because just about everyone can get the jokes in Friends, everyone has some part of it that they can relate to. Monty Python, just plain sucks.
 
2005-03-07 12:16:04 PM
Friends beats Monty Python, because just about everyone can get the jokes in Friends

By that rationale, we should be aiming for the lowest common denominator. Sesame Street must be the best goddamn show on television.
 
2005-03-07 12:17:34 PM

"Friends, everyone has some part of it that they can relate to"


Like sleeping with Courtney Cox/Jennifer Aniston or living in a 4 bedroom Manhattan apt. even though you have no steady income.

/you're a dink
 
2005-03-07 12:18:00 PM
2005-03-07 12:16:04 PM Rillion

Actually, Sesame Street is more intellectually stimulating than Friends.
 
2005-03-07 12:18:03 PM
SuperCMC(way up the top there) - The Simpsons just won the best cartoon ever list in the same series.

Look Around You is awesome, but very British. Nathan barley is also excellent.

Monty Python wasn't a sitcom. It was comedy, but not situation comedy, it was a sketch show. /pedant.
 
2005-03-07 12:18:47 PM
1curb your enthusiasm
2the office
3newsradio
4chapelle show
5all in the family
6taxi
7mr show
8the young ones
9sanford and son
10cheers
 
2005-03-07 12:19:39 PM
2005-03-07 12:14:08 PM ekdikeo4

I disagree. I can't relate to any part of "Friends" because I don't hang around with a bunch of farking morons.

Many of the people I know are much more like characters from Python sketches.
 
2005-03-07 12:21:11 PM
I can't believe I've only seen one mention of The Young Ones.
 
2005-03-07 12:23:26 PM
ekdikeo4:

Friends beats Monty Python, because just about everyone can get the jokes in Friends, everyone has some part of it that they can relate to. Monty Python, just plain sucks.

You either wear a safety helmet everywhere or you're just a trolling ass.
 
2005-03-07 12:23:57 PM
I can't relate to any part of "Friends" because I don't hang around with a bunch of farking morons.

Comedy gold. You should write a sitcom. ;-)
 
2005-03-07 12:25:01 PM
"I can't believe I've only seen one mention of The Young Ones."

Try reading the thread.

We plant the thread
Nature grows the thread
and then we...eat the thread...
 
2005-03-07 12:25:33 PM
 
2005-03-07 12:26:22 PM
i can't believe annoying crap like the simpsons (which tries so hard to be clever but is just predictable and unintelligent with grating vice acting) and friends (full of stuff i can't relate to at all; and irritating chracters, none of which i would ever want to associate with in real life. [but not as bad as Seinfeld]) made the list

father ted kicks ass...

what, no dad's army?
 
2005-03-07 12:26:59 PM
Mr. Bungle At Work
Fawlty Towers sucks major ass.
/Are you from Barcelona?
 
2005-03-07 12:30:21 PM
2005-03-07 12:25:33 PM rocinante721

There is some good stuff to be had in "Full Bottom". I liked the Christmas episode particularly (with the Mary/Joseph/3 Wise Men gag)... but I find the show to be inconsistent in hitting my humor buttons.
 
2005-03-07 12:34:47 PM
2005-03-07 12:26:59 PM LewDux

Hilarious.
 
2005-03-07 12:35:30 PM
Like sleeping with Courtney Cox/Jennifer Aniston or living in a 4 bedroom Manhattan apt. even though you have no steady income.


I thought the apartment was rent controlled, and only 2 bedrooms.
 
2005-03-07 12:44:00 PM
Fawlty: "He has a certain...oh, I don't know what."
The Major: "Je ne sais quoi."
Fawlty: "Exactly!"

Now THAT'S subtle.

By the way, can someone tell me what "Je ne sais pas" means? I do not know.
 
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