Wednesday, December 30, 2015

My 10 Favorite Sitcom Episodes of 2015

Catch up mode for my year end lists!

Let's start it off with my list of my 10 favorite episodes from 10 US comedy shows that I watched this year. 
I chose just one episode per series for variety purposes ;)

(Check out my previous lists from 2012, 2013 and 2014)

10. The Last Man on Earth "The Elephant in the Room" (Season 1 Episode 2)  

 The second episode of this show deals with Phil discovering that he is not alone in the world after all.  His interactions with Carol were funny as she is not the person he is expecting at all. My favorite parts of this episode was how Carol is so stern on respecting the laws (and correct grammar!) even if essentially it does not matter anyway!

9. Black-ish "Dr. Hell No" (Season 2 Episode 3) 
The second season of Black-ish is quite strong so far and it had been exploring polarizing topics such as the use of the N word for black americans and gun use but my favorite episode they aired this year is the 3rd episode of the second season when Pops had a health scare as this was a truly funny episode. Just thinking of Dre's panicked reaction when he thought Pops'condition got worse makes me laugh already.

8. Fresh Off The Boat "Family Business Trip"  (Season 2 Episode 1)

Constance Wu is the breakout star of this show as the matriarch Jessica Huang. Every single episode she always cracks me up with her sarcastic lines and no non-sense attitude. I chose this episode as my favorite for this show simply because of this exchange that still cracks me up:

MASSAGE THERAPIST: What do you do for joy, Jessica?
JESSICA: I micromanage my family.

7. The Goldbergs  "Barry Goldberg's Day Off"(Season 2 Episode 14)

 This show does so well with themed/tribute episodes of 80s pop culture classics and this one is my favorite as it really captured the essence of Ferris Bueller's Day Off up and the big song number in the end was so cheesy but so entertaining just like in the movie

6. Modern Family "Connection Lost" (Season 6 Episode 16)

This special episode of Modern Family was just set on a computer/smartphone/tablet screen as the family interacted via chat and message apps. It was a tight but really creative episode that was able to maximize the unique storytelling setup for full comedic effect.

5. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend "My First Thanksgiving with Josh" (Season 1 Episode 5) 
This show is not a 30 minute sitcom but an hourlong musical dramedy but it's really funny so I included it in this list :D The first set of episodes were pure delight, it really is a crazy show but Rachel Bloom is just so funny and charming! I liked this episode a lot because, well it featured a Filipino family ;) It was just fun to see Pinoys represented in US TV with a funny episode that does not make any tired stereotypes.

4. Mom "Kitty Litter and and a Class A Felony" (Season 2 Episode 12)

Mom's second season was so excellent and  one of the few shows that can balance drama and comedy perfectly and this episode highlight this show's particular strength. AFter a shocking death that occurred in the previous episode, we see how the characters deal with the aftermath and once again Allison Janney is the MVP who could make the viewer simultaneously cry and laugh.

3. Parks and Recreation "Leslie and Ron" (Season 7 Episode 4)

For the first part of its final season, Parks and Recreation dealt with the falling out between Leslie and Ron and the resolution to that storyline was in this episode which featured great writing that understood why this friendship was the backbone of the show. It's not the funniest episode of the farewell season but definitely the most engaging and touching.
2. The Big Bang Theory "The Opening Night Excitation"(Season 9 Episode 11)

 I was afraid that the much hyped "coitus" episode of Sheldon and Amy will fail to deliver but thankfully it did not go for cheap laughs at all. This is probably the best episode the show since the early seasons. It  was funny but tender. I really liked that they did not make their first sexual experience a disaster. For once, we can see a trace of humanity from Sheldon! Amy though was the MVP of the episode from how excited she was when she found out what Sheldon is planning up to her sincerity of being nervous about doing it (and her reaction after the deed was done is priceless!). The episode also had solid B storyline about Star Wars: The Force Awakens and features another knockout guest performance from Bob Newhart

1. The Middle "Halloween VI:  Tick Tock Death" (Season 7 Episode 6)

Every year, I will always have a hard time choosing what episode of The Middle to select for this list and this year there were a lot of good choices as the show had another good set of episodes this year (Sue's graduation, Mike's middle life crisis and the Christmas episode to name a few) but I ultimately pick this year's  Halloween episode as my favorite. The story was told in a spoof of Twilight Zone (Atticus Shafer nailed the impression) and all three story lines worked so well. I laughed hard when Frankie became a "monster" chasing Rita Glossner, the grim reaper storyline with Axl and his friends (and on Kenny speaks and shows his face!) and ending it with Future Brick was a nice touch.  This episode is what a good Halloween episode should be made off, got the spooks but still grounded in the reality the show is set in .

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