TV Comedy from the 1990s


The laughDB database is dedicated to the funniest comedy movies, stand-up comedy and TV series.

This section is for TV comedy series from the 1990s. By default they are presented starting with the ones ranking highest on the laugh-o-meter, but you can also sort them by year, title or IMDB rating.

TV Comedy Series from the 1990s sorted by Laugh-o-meter (descending)

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The Games DVDThe Games
      1998 | Australia | Laughs: 9.0 (Laugh and Smile) | imdb: 8.6
      wikipedia | who was involved?

This Australian spoof reality show may be one of the funniest TV series ever. It supposedly follows the team in charge of organizing the 2000 Sydney Olympics—through an unending series of media disasters, power plays and bungles.

The show was recommended to me for cultural acclimatization when I moved to Australia in 2001, and I have been passing on that recommendation ever since. Apparently, the story goes, the show was so close to the truth that it sometimes happened that several weeks after the airing of an episode depicting a botched job, the real committee would go public with the story of a similar misadventure.

For my taste, the following episodes all deserve medals:

Athletics Schedule
100-Metre (Gold)
Past Sport Stars and Gender
Millennium Bug
(Last viewed: Apr 2002 November 2010)

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Father Ted DVDFather Ted
      1995 | U.K. | Laughs: 8.7 | imdb: 8.6
      wikipedia | dmoz | who was involved?

This show, which follows the staff of a church on a small Irish island, is the first of three comedy jewels written (at least in part) by the same man (the other two are Black Books and The IT Crowd).

The very first episode ("Good Luck, Father Ted") is a knock-out. It is rare for a show to start with a bang, with all actors fully in character. But that is how Father Ted begins.

For what it's worth, here are the other episodes that gave me the most laughs.
And Grant Unto Him Eternal Rest (Season 1, Episode 6)
Tentacles of Doom (Season 2, Episode 3)
A Song for Europe (Season 2, Episode 5)
The Plague (the rabbit episode) (Season 2, Episode 6)
New Jack City (Season 2, Episode 9)
Kicking Bishop Brennan (Season 3, Episode 6)
(Last viewed: July 2010)

More About Father Ted:
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      laughDB's full page for Father Ted

Mr Bean DVDMr Bean
      1990 | U.K. | Laughs: 8.3 | imdb: 8.5
      wikipedia | dmoz | who was involved?

Here are my favorite Bean episodes:

Mr. Bean (the first one)
The Curse of Mr. Bean
Mr. Bean Goes to Town
Mr. Bean Rides Again
The Trouble with Mr. Bean
Merry Christmas Mr. Bean
Mr. Bean in Room 426
Goodnight Mr. Bean
(Last viewed: May 2011)

More About Mr Bean:
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      laughDB's full page for Mr Bean

Seinfeld DVDSeinfeld
      1990 | USA | Laughs: 8.0 | imdb: 8.9
      wikipedia | dmoz | who was involved?

I've made a separate page about the best Seinfeld episodes. (Last viewed: December 2008)

More About Seinfeld:
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Friends DVDFriends
      1994 | USA | Laughs: 7.6 | imdb: 8.9
      wikipedia | who was involved?

This show does not feature the kind of smart comedy that makes you think; rather, it features situational comedy that makes you laugh—when it works. The show went on for so long (ten seasons!) that if you want to dive into it and have a chance to laugh, you'll have to pick your episodes.
In such cases, my strategy is to get a box set from the library, then to head over to IMDB to select episodes with a rating higher than 8.3. This considerably narrows the range of episodes I need to watch, and I find that with the exception of a few duds, most of these episodes are able to deliver smiles, and hopefully a laugh or two.

Here are some episodes I would watch again:
01x07 The One With The Blackout
01x13 The One With The Boobies
01x24 The One Where Rachel Finds Out
02x07 The one where Ross finds out
02x12 The One With The Superbowl, Part 1
02x13 The one after The Superbowl, Part 2
03x02 The One Where No One's Ready
03x21 The One With A Chick And A Duck
05x01 The One After Ross Says Rachel
05x02 The One With All The Kissing
05x05 The One With The Kips
05x08 The One With All The Thanksgivings
05x09 The One With Ross' Sandwich
05x14 The One Where Everybody Finds Out
06x17 The One With Unagi
07x11 The One With All The Cheesecakes
07x19 The One With Ross and Monica's Cousin
08x08 The One With The Stripper
08x13 The One With Chandler Takes A Bath
10x03 The One With Ross's Tan
10x07 The One With the Home Study
(Last viewed: March 2010)

More About Friends:
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The Vicar of Dibley DVDThe Vicar of Dibley
      1994 | U.K. | Laughs: 7.0 (Watch Once) | imdb: 8.0
      wikipedia | dmoz | who was involved?

This popular series follows a female priest in a small English village. It may be unequal and at times annoying, but it features a rich cast of characters, all interesting in their own right. That, and the laughs to be found in the better episodes, makes the whole series well worth watching once. (Last viewed: March 2012)

More About The Vicar of Dibley:
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      laughDB's full page for The Vicar of Dibley

I'm Alan Partridge DVDI'm Alan Partridge
      1997 | U.K. | Laughs: 6.9 | imdb: 8.5
      wikipedia | dmoz | who was involved?

A midnight radio host who has known better days aches to get a second chance at a show on BBC television. The first season follows him as he lives in a suburban hotel. The second sees him living in a caravan.

Like Larry in Curb Your Enthusiasm, Alan seems to specialize in making you cringe, but not to the point where you need to turn off the screen. The show is not full of eye candy (the English suburbs don't seem to make great scenery), but it's full of humor, and it delivers smiles consistently, if not laughs. If the production budget was as small as it looks, the show is good value. Well worth watching once. (Last viewed: May 2012)

More About I'm Alan Partridge:
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      laughDB's full page for I'm Alan Partridge

Twitch City DVDTwitch City
      1998 | Canada | Laughs: 4.0 | imdb: 8.2
      wikipedia | who was involved?

This is one of these rare series that gets better with each episode (there are only thirteen of them, spread over two seasons). It focuses on the life of a recluse who watches TV for much of the day, and the people who come through his flat. It's not laugh-out-loud material, but it's funny and made me smile a lot. It's also original and clever in a way I've never seen before. As we moved towards the end of season two, I was surprised at how attached I had become to Curtis, the show's main character. Highly recommended. (Last viewed: January 2013)

More About Twitch City:
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      laughDB's full page for Twitch City

Michèle Laroque & Pierre Palmade: Ils s'Aiment posterMichèle Laroque & Pierre Palmade: Ils s'Aiment
      1999 | France | Laughs: N/A (Light-Hearted) | imdb: 7.1
      who was involved?

This theater piece was recommended to me by a friend's mom whose taste in French comedy seemed compatible with mine. On a stage, a man and a woman argue about the usual things, such as how to drive.

I gave it a try with the best intentions but could not get past the smiling stage to the chuckling stage. After half an hour, I gave up as I had better things to watch.

There are several sequels which I won't be attempting: Ils se sont aimés, Ils se re-aiment. (Last viewed: September 2018)

More About Michèle Laroque & Pierre Palmade: Ils s'Aiment:
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