November 28, 2006
In today's New York Times, TV critic Virginia Heffernan points out that in its own stealthy way, situation comedies have made a big comeback -- at least in quality. Although there are far fewer sitcoms on the air than ten or twenty years ago, there are far fewer lousy ones on the major networks than there were in the genre's heyday. And there are plenty of terrific ones to choose from. To my taste, Curb Your Enthusiasm and The Office are the cream of the crop. Others might prefer Entourage or My Name Is Earl. This may not be the Golden Age of comedy, but there's little doubt that we are now in a period of rebirth.
I can't guarantee that either Big Day (which debuts
tonight at 9:00 P.M. EST on ABC) or My Boys will be the equal of the above. Heffernan thinks that both show promise. We've heard good things about My Boys, which stars the talented Jordana Spiro and features the great standup comedian, Jim Gaffigan, who has faced a star-crossed history on sitcoms.
And if you're staying at home anyway, why not check out the criminally neglected Friday Night Lights (8:00 P.M. on NBC), the Frontline history of the credit card (at 9:00 P.M. on most PBS stations), and Tom Waits on The Daily Show?