Nobody’s Perfect, and TV Shows Are Ready to Accept This

Remember when you used to feel like crap when you compared your life to your favorite sitcom characters’? Your hair was never that perfect, you never had as much free time, and your apartment was the size of their bathrooms. Well, that’s partly over. Television networks around the world (read “USA”) are waking up to the fact that shiny, happy people are NOT REAL. And it is okay to put real people on television. (Cue applause and ‘woohoos’).

This has ushered in the age of sitcoms starring people “most of whom are too ugly to be on television,” as Joey says in FRIENDS. These shows don’t celebrate ‘regular’ people – we celebrate that which is unusual; these shows accept them. The characters in these gems have seriously messed-up lives, and their appearances reflect this – even the female characters’. And while they may not give you your daily dose of eye candy, they will give you a truckload of LOL moments.

Veep (6 seasons out, 1 to go)

Before Donald Trump became POTUS, a lot of Veep fans may have believed that the writers were exaggerating wildly for effect. But no more. Now, we know just how ludicrous things and people are inside the White House. The one thing different about the reel people- you feel pity or liking for almost all the characters at some point or the other. Even for Gonad.

Quirky Quote: “Settle something for me, Jonah. You like to have sex and you like to travel? Then you can f*$% off.” – Selena Myer

Brooklyn 99 (5 seasons and counting)

Brooklyn Nine-Nine has given us fully human characters, beautiful, powerful, flawed, vulnerable, majestic,” said Guillermo del Toro, Oscar-winning director of the Oscar-winning film ‘The Shape of Water’. And presumably, he knows what he’s talking about. Every single character in this show is sitcom gold, and once you start watching the show, you’ll wish that it had more than the 5 seasons that are already there.

Quirky Quote: English language cannot fully capture the depth and complexity of my thoughts, so I’m incorporating emojis into my speech to better express myself. Winky face.” – Gina Linetti

Mom (5 seasons and going strong)

In a show about recovering alcoholics, needless to say, imperfections abound. Each character is flawed, and the flaws span the whole spectrum from platitude-spouting righteousness to hanging-by-a-thread insanity. Despite this, the characters and the show are extremely likeable and luckily for you, there are five whole seasons of their company for you to enjoy.

Quirky Quote: “You’re gonna love my gynaecologist. He’s got very small hands.” – Bonnie Plunkett

Superstore (3 seasons out, more to come)

Set in a supermarket in suburban USA, the show is rich in quirky, oddball characters that must be based on real people because you can’t make this stuff up. Like the butch supervisor Dina who has gazillion pet birds and severe intimacy issues, or the super-Catholic and very white store manager struggling to deal with changing times, and a multi-ethnic staff. There are no ‘heroes’ in this sitcom, though everyone has their heroic moments. Well, almost everyone.  We’re talking about you, Mateo.

Quirky Quote: “Why are our customers always so ugly?” – Mateo Liwanag

So, the next time you’re looking for comedies in which makeup isn’t a character by itself and the dialogues don’t compete with the laughter track for audibility, check these out.

By Sweta Vinod

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