Settling an UnAsked Question

I like small parties, the intimate gatherings with just enough booze and good friends to fill a room with laughter and maybe answer one of life’s great questions or two. One recent Saturday evening I was fortunate enough to spend a few hours with my dear friend the Disaffected Scanner Jockey, her fiance, and one more. Because we could… and maybe at my insistence, when the conversation drifted towards The Best Sit-Coms of the 70s, 80s, 90s, and Aughts, we recorded our findings.

To eliminate your need to have the long conversations (or give you a reason to argue with our conclusions) here are the winners and all nominees.

Best of the 70s – winners in BOLD

All in the Family


Mary Tyler Moore

Sanford and Sons

The Jefferson’s

WKRP in Cincinnati


The Odd Couple

Best of the 80s – winners in BOLD

Golden Girls


Cosby Show

Wonder Years


Best of the 90s – winners in BOLD





3rd Rock from the Sun

News Radio

Just Shoot Me

Sex and the City

Best of the 00s – winners in BOLD

The Office

30 Rock

South Park

Always Sunny in Philadelphia

Curb Your Enthusiasm



When a show crossed multiple decades, the best block of years determined the decade of inclusion.

While cultural significance was a deciding factor, it was never allowed to be the primary factor.

All ties between shows were settled by the question: which show would you rather watch again today.

After the nominees were initially selected, other shows that were worthy of notation may have been mentioned but were not necessarily recorded if it was determined that they would not have been among the winners… mostly because I forgot to write them down.

Some of the “hybrid dramadies” were included for nomination and considered for the top awards. However, the fact that none of them won is not inherently indicative of that hybrid status.

Argue amongst yourselves.


7 Responses to Settling an UnAsked Question

  1. jen says:

    okay, i’m not gonna get all ragey about how News Radio didn’t win… but, seriously, no mention of Arrested Development?? it was by far one of the funniest shows in the 90’s, well above Just Shoot Me & SATC (as a comedy).
    for shame.

  2. Brando says:

    Jen–Arrested Development didn’t come out until the mid-Augts, and while it didn’t make the final cut (strong competition in that decade!) it was seriously considered.

    Refugee–thanks for joining us Saturday!

  3. Christina says:

    I love M*A*S*H! Still watch it to this day (I watched an episode on Sunday).

  4. Lazygal says:

    What, no Maude?

  5. Scarlett says:

    You missed the category – best DRAMAS!! 80s – DALLAS, 90s – ER & 90210, 00s I would have to say LOST & the OC – though some might argue 24.

  6. magnolia says:

    ooh, love this. though it does go to show that sitcoms as a genre have progressively weakened over the last 4 decades. i mean, look at the contenders for the 70s, then the contenders for the 00s?

    for the record, i am 29. it’s just my soul that’s curmudgeonly. 🙂

  7. kim says:

    Though it’s not usually that clever I’m kinda partial to “How I met your Mother”. They have a token Canadian so how can that be a bad thing?
    ps- Arrested Development would have won with me no matter how late in the decade it arrived.

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