Whatever happened to the American sitcom?

The funny dad.

The single comrades living in the big city (and no, not Sex and the City).

The laugh track.

Throughout the 90s, sitcoms reigned supreme. Yeah I know the foundation was set well before that with Cheers, The Cosby Show, I Love Lucy, Taxi, Bewitched, Gilligan’s Island, etc. However, I was either not born or too young to appreciate those, so let’s just pretend they never happened.

During the 90s, and even into the early 2000s, there were some fantastic sitcoms. Seinfeld is obviously the first one that comes to everybody’s mind. As far as pure comedy, it was — and still is — unbeatable. But you also had Friends, Everybody Loves Raymond, NewsRadio,  Frasier and heck, even Will & Grace was popular and had a good run.

Once Friends and Everybody Loves Raymond ceased production, so did the sitcom. I know some people liked to bash Friends while it was on the air, but that show was funny. I loved it in high school, so much that I nearly memorized every line and every joke.

However, the reason I know the show was genuinely funny is because I still watch it now, eight years after its completion and having forgotten most of the jokes — and I still laugh. In fact, I probably understand the jokes better now seeing as I am older, wiser, and [slightly] more sexually experienced.

What sitcoms are there now? Yes I have heard very good things about Modern Family and How I met Your Mother, but there’s no way these two compare to the upper echelon of yesteryear’s sitcoms.

The sad thing is that I think people’s standards of quality have decreased significantly. Two and a Half Men is the most watched comedy on TV? Are you kidding me? That show was awful even with Charlie Sheen on it. And please don’t even get me started on the Big Bang Theory. That show is absolutely brutal. Sure it has a funny lead in Jim Parsons and a hot chick in Kaley Cuoco, but that does not equate to goodness.

The problem is that sitcoms have gotten dumber. Whatever happened to intelligent jokes? Whatever happened to everyday situations that we can relate to? And I hate to say it, but the reason shows like Two and a Half Men and the Big Bang Theory get such good ratings is because, well, most people in our country are satisfied with stupid humor.

I’m not saying most people are dumb (I can say it — I’m just not saying it now), but most people do settle for cheap entertainment. They hear the canned laughter in the background and that makes their mind think, “Oh, I guess that was funny.”

The Office used to be the funniest show on TV, but even that has now gone way downhill.

It’s just sad to me because we could do better. I will give credit though, because between shows like Breaking Bad, Lost, the Sopranos, Dexter, Homeland, Newsroom, Mad Men, Boardwalk Empire and The Wire — dramas, over the last decade, are at their peak. There are some damn good hour-long shows that don’t even air on major cable networks, and that is probably why they’re good.

But sitcoms, man. It’s probably because FOX, NBC, ABC and CBS all prioritize reality TV over sitcoms these days. If these networks put as much effort into finding a good sitcom as they do finding celebrity judges for their singing competitions, well then maybe we wouldn’t have to settle for bad shows.

Another shitty thing is that sitcoms no longer represent American values. The older ones represented laziness, friendships, fatherhood, love, and now, they give us Charlie Sheen and Ashton Kutcher. Sad.

And no, I don’t count the 2012 election as a sitcom. #POLITICALJOKE.

Before I go, I want to discuss a new precedent in our legal system that was recently set. A 20-year-old English woman named Rosie Dodd was given 2 years in prison after she falsely claimed that she was raped by three men. She claimed she was raped because she regretted having sex with them, but then admitted she was lying. The three men were arrested and spent a total of 50 hours in prison.

Honestly, I think that this is a victory for both men and women.

Because of women like Rosie Dodd, actual women who do get raped may actually stand a chance. There’s a reason why so little sexual assaults actually lead to convictions — just ask Ben Roethlisberger — and it’s because of lying bitches who pass the blame onto others just because they can’t live with their own stupid decisions.

And it’s good for men because we don’t have to live in fear that devious chicks can spit lies and falsely accuse you of something that you didn’t even come remotely close to committing, and forever painting you as a sexual predator when it’s not the case. Not that I am speaking from experience, or anything.

Of course there are real rapists out there, and those people are bad.

*laugh track*

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