Television sitcoms are great in general; they are presented in bite-size, short episodes, are humorous and perfect for relaxing. I have three favourite sitcoms, all of which I have discovered in the past few years and which I have watched many times over.
“Frasier” the successful spin-off from “Cheers” is fantastic. It ran for eleven years, and starred the extremely talented cast of Kelsey Grammer, the amazing David Hyde Pierce, Peri Gilpin, Jane Leeves and John Mahoney. I automatically began “Frasier” as soon as I had finished “Cheers” and I have to admit I was sceptical of how the writers could make a show revolving around Frasier entertaining. He is a character who in my opinion can only be fully appreciated when he is in dialogue or banter with others, which he did beautifully with his nuclear family and work colleagues.
I was delighted to be introduced to this family of men, with John as Martin as the dad, the ex-cop and Kelsey and David as psychiatrist brothers, Frasier and Niles. Jane played Daphne Moon, Martin’s physical therapist and Frasier’s housekeeper and Peri played Roz, Frasier’s radio producer. It was the ensemble of actors which made “Frasier” the success it was. I loved every season and could watch each season from start to finish in one sitting.
The comedy was amazing; the blend of physical slap-stick, verbal wit, nonsensical situations and facial expressions could not be faulted. I felt that throughout the seasons, every actor was given the freedom to truly show their talent and merit; whether it was Frasier’s, Nile’s and Martin’s ability to sing and play the piano, Roz’s perfect sense of comedic timing or Daphne’s dancing talent, it was all displayed to the delighted fans.
“Frasier” will remain special for me, as one night I was watching it with my dad who was recovering from health problems and he laughed for the first time in weeks at the episode “Roz and the snoz”, which incidentally is one of my favourites. No two episodes or seasons were the same and there was a real sense of growth throughout the seasons. The characters developed, matured and mellowed year on year, thus keeping it dynamic and fresh and a complete joy to watch. The standard of the writing remained amazing, it was a complete success in my opinion and ended at the right time. Although it was sad to see them go, it was a right decision after Martin’s remarriage and Daphne’s and Nile’s baby. It is a show I will continue to enjoy for many years to come.
My second favourite sitcom is “How I met your mother”. This has a unique and refreshing story-line; most episodes begin with a camera shot of two bored looking children sitting together on a sofa listening to a voice over of their dad talking to them. The year is 2030. The dad is Ted Mosby, an architect, who is telling them about how he met their mother and after the initial voice over, the scene goes back to 2006 where you see him in action with his friends. Ted is played by Josh Radnor and his friends include Barney (Neil Patrick Harris), Marshall (Jason Segel), Lilly (Alyson Hannigan) and Robin (Cobie Smulders). I have watched three seasons of it thus far and I love it.
It is very funny, cleverly written and entertaining. The episodes vary on focusing on the different characters and I have found the seasons to be dynamic in their plots and lines. I have not got a favourite amongst the characters, they all appeal to me for different reasons. Ted is just a genuinely nice, friendly guy who is just looking for the love of his life. Robin is his girlfriend for a while and is a smart, beautiful TV reporter who is great at physical comedy. Marshal and Lilly are a couple who have been together for a decade and are engaged for the most part. Their relationship is really sweet and they are the greatest couple imaginable. It looks strange when one is in a scene without the other for they are a team. This leaves Barney. Words fail me when it comes to Barney; he can be best summed up with two of his favourite expressions. He is just simply “awe-some!” and completely “legend (wait for it)dary!” I cannot wait to see the rest of the seasons.