The 5 Best Sitcoms Available on Netflix
Unfortunately, many a modern sitcom lack the necessary ingredients for success – an equal amount of heart and humor, an original concept, strong cast chemistry, and writers who know how to delicately walk the line between realism and sitcom-appropriate believability. Yet, there are a handful of sitcoms on Netflix that are definitely worth a watch.
1. ‘The Good Place’
The Good Place premiered in 2016 to strong critical and audience reception; reviews highlighted Kristen Bell and Ted Danson’s captivating performances in an absurdly whimsical depiction of the afterlife.
The story follows Eleanor Shellstrop (Bell), who is surprised she has wound up in “the good place” (the show’s heaven). Yet, when she realizes she’s there by mistake, the situation gets a little messy. With help from a few new friends, she aims to become a better person, earning her spot among the “good guys.” Yet, a few more twists lurk around the corner.
2. ‘New Girl’
New Girl follows upbeat and quirky Jess (Zooey Deschanel), who moves in with three single guys after enduring a rough breakup. She and the three guys — an intelligent underachiever, a vain man obsessed with his social status, and a competitive former athlete — bond to form an unlikely family. The show benefits from strong writing and solid chemistry among the cast members. And, even when it gets a little too cheesy, it remains quite relatable.
Community starts off with a lawyer, Jeff (Joel McHale), who finds out his degree has been revoked. He is forced back into school at Greendale Community College, where he decides to invent a study group in hopes of scoring some points with a fellow student. Unfortunately, the woman he is interested in is not the only one who shows up to learn Spanish from a man who has falsely claimed to be a “board-certified” tutor. Though his Spanish stinks, the members keep meeting anyway. And, they learn a lot about each other throughout the show. The series not only deconstructs genre tropes but boasts a cast with incomparable chemistry.
4. ‘Schitt’s Creek’
Though it may take a few episodes to fall in love with Schitt’s Creek — as the character are not exactly instantly relatable — it’s worth the wait. The show follows a wealthy couple, and their two children, who suddenly find themselves broke. The one asset that remains: a small town called Schitt’s Creek that husband and father Johnny Rose (Eugene Levy) bought years ago as a joke. The family heads to Schitt’s Creek to face their new lives in poverty, learning much about each other through the hardship.
5. ‘One Day at a Time’
One Day at a Time deserves every award that exists, and it was taken off the air way too soon. The reboot of the 1970s sitcom follows Penelope (Justina Machado) — an ex-Army veteran and mother — who does everything in her power to keep her family afloat, with help (and sometimes hindrance) from her mother Lydia (Rita Moreno). The sitcom is equal parts heart and humor — you laugh, then you cry, then you laugh again. The show is also unafraid to confront racism, homophobia, cultural clashes, and more. Yet, right when it gets a bit too serious, it finds a joke hiding beneath the tension. The family goes through good times and bad times together, and it’s got more heart in one episode than some shows offer in an entire run.