2015 was a great year for comedies. Some of my old favorites went out on top and a couple of great new shows debuted. Here are my choices for the best live action comedies of 2015.
15. Drunk History (Comedy Central)
Drunk History is always reliable and season three brought us more great drunken ramblings and historical re-enactments.
14. Kroll Show (Comedy Central)
Kroll Show was an innovative and unique sketch show that built up an entire intricate world of characters. The final season did these characters justice, bringing all the threads to incredibly bizarre conclusions like Dr. Armond finding out that being accused of murdering his wife was an elaborate prank the entire time.
13. Girl Meets World (Disney Channel)
This show wonderfully subverts everything you’d expect from a Disney Channel show. Riley and Maya aren’t hung up on popularity or desperate to change themselves for others or always getting into misunderstandings. They have an inner confidence that is truly refreshing, while still having incredible moments of vulnerability. The plotlines for this show are all based in honest communication like no children’s show I’ve ever seen. While this season became more preoccupied with who’s dating who then past seasons, I loved how much the focus always came back to keeping the core friendships strong.
12. Review (Comedy Central)
In its second season, Review didn’t slow down and kept putting Forrest through the ringer until you start to understand why he’d think the entire show is a conspiracy created by his producer. Last year, Review gave us an incredible turning point with the pancakes episode and this year they managed to match that level of surreal emotional resonance with the imaginary friend episode.
11. Nathan for You (Comedy Central)
Comedian Nathan Fielder continued coming up with brilliant stunts for this year’s season of his show. From “Smokers Allowed” to “Summit Ice” to the “Man Zone,” this season had even funnier and more memorable stunts than the previous seasons.
10. Other Space (Yahoo! TV)
This sci-fi comedy tells the story of a bunch of misfits lost in space. Stewart Lipinski’s enthusiasm for everything and his sister Karen Lipinski’s cynical attitude play off each other perfectly and the supporting cast is amazing.
9. Girls (HBO)
After four seasons, Girls has proven itself to be a very consistent comedy. It reached new heights of emotional this season with memorable scenes like the moment when Ray and Hannah confide to each other that they’re faking being okay with everything in their lives and the scene where Adam asks Hannah to get back together with him.
8. Master of None (Netflix)
Aziz Ansari and Alan Yang’s new comedy is a refreshingly earnest show. The episode topics range from personal things like dating and family, to satirical looks at modern life like the brilliant “Indians on TV” which looks at racial representation in pop culture.
7. Broad City (Comedy Central)
What makes Broad City so special is the way it combines a joyful whimsy with a perfectly resonant, relatable look at life. Sometimes Ilana and Abbi are going to amazing parties and sometimes they’re struggling to find air conditioning. Either way, it’s always a lot of fun to watch.
6. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Netflix)
This new comedy was strong right out of the gate. Kimmy Schmidt, a woman who’s just re-joined society after being in a doomsday cult, is an infectiously adorable protagonist. The level of joke-writing on this show is truly impressive.
5. Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Fox)
Brooklyn Nine-Nine is one of the most reliable shows on TV week-to-week, thanks to the strength of the ensemble. Every character is fantastic. It’s a refreshingly positive show, that doesn’t let its kindness and optimism stop it from having sharp satire when necessary.
4. Silicon Valley (HBO)
Silicon Valley is one of the most story-driven comedies on TV right now, to great effect. The show knows exactly how to use twists and turns to make Pied Piper’s story a gut-wrenching underdog fight, while also mixing in satire that makes you question whether any of these characters should be in charge of anything.
3. Cougar Town (TBS)
This was the final season for the cul-de-sac crew and the ending was perfect. They knew that the heart of this show was the friendships and they didn’t need to do anything out there with the story to make this final season work.
2. Community (Yahoo! TV)
I was skeptical about Community getting yet another season, but it absolutely won me over. Season 6 gave us justice for a lot of the characters whose writing had been shaky (looking firmly at Britta and Dean Pelton) and added a couple new characters who came in and nailed it. Best of all, it gave us a finale that is absolutely one of the most special episodes of television I’ve ever seen.
1. Parks and Recreation (NBC)
This is yet another show that pulled off a great final season this year. Over the years, Leslie Knope had become my favorite character on TV and there wasn’t a single character on this show I wasn’t fond of. They managed to get everything right for the characters in the last season. I’m so grateful for that.