NewsNewsBest 11 British Comedy Shows in 2023

Best 11 British Comedy Shows in 2023

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British comedies are famous for their distinctive humor that sets them apart from American comedies. They have a certain charm that makes them extra enjoyable to watch, especially relatable workplace comedies. If you’re on the lookout for the most hilarious British comedies that transcend cultural boundaries, this list of the all-time best British comedy series will help you discover some hidden gems to add to your watchlist. You might even find yourself rushing to watch some older shows right away.

Thanks to streaming services like Netflix, you can easily watch many of the newer British comedies in The States. Recent hits like “Derry Girls” and “Catastrophe” are comedy gold from across the pond and are considered among the top British sitcoms of the past decade. If you’re in the mood for Channel 4 classics, “Peep Show” is definitely a treasure worth seeking out. Moreover, there are British comedy series like “The Office” and “Shameless” that have even been remade for American audiences.

So, which British shows will make you burst into laughter? Share your favorite British comedies with us and let us know which ones failed to even elicit a dry chuckle from you.

1. Fawlty Towers

Fawlty Towers
This British sitcom takes us into the chaotic world of a seaside hotel, where we witness the hilarious misadventures of its eccentric owner and his hardworking staff. What makes this show truly brilliant is its sharp writing, perfect timing, and the incredible performances by John Cleese as the clueless hotelier Basil Fawlty, Prunella Scales as his bossy wife Sybil, Connie Booth as their clever employee Polly, and Andrew Sachs as the clumsy Spanish waiter Manuel.

Despite having only 12 episodes spread over two seasons in the late 1970s, this sitcom has stood the test of time and is still considered a classic. It will have you bursting with laughter as you watch the characters get themselves into absurd situations that are simply unforgettable.

Premiered: September 19, 1975
Actors: John Cleese, Prunella Scales, Connie Booth

2. Blackadder

This British historical sitcom is all about Edmund Blackadder, a cunning and sardonic protagonist who cleverly maneuvers his way through different eras of history. He’s got an amusing sidekick named Baldrick, who isn’t exactly the brightest bulb in the box.

What makes this show stand out is its witty writing that blends satire and wordplay, resulting in a truly unique comedic experience. It’s not just about making you laugh though, as it also delves into themes like social hierarchy and political intrigue.

The cast is top-notch, with Rowan Atkinson portraying the titular character and Tony Robinson playing the lovable Baldrick. Their performances have solidified this series as a television classic, thanks to its ability to deliver both laughter and insight into various periods of British history.

Premiered: 1983
Actors: Rowan Atkinson, Brian Blessed, Elspet Gray

3. Dreaming Whilst Black

Dreaming Whilst Black
Kwabena quits his job to chase his dream of becoming a filmmaker.

Premiered: July 24, 2023
Actors: Adjani Salmon, Dani Moseley, Alexander Owen

4. Only Fools and Horses

Only Fools and Horses
This British sitcom is all about two ambitious brothers who are always trying to hit the jackpot with their get-rich-quick schemes. It’s set in a working-class neighborhood in London during the 80s and 90s, and people just love it for its perfect timing and hilarious conversations that really capture the dreams of the lower-middle class. But it’s not just about laughs, it also explores themes like family and loyalty.

One of the reasons why this show is such a hit is because of its unforgettable characters. Del Boy, played by David Jason, and Rodney, played by Nicholas Lyndhurst, have this amazing chemistry on screen that keeps audiences hooked. And that’s why people have been loving this show for years and years.

Premiered: September 8, 1981
David Jason, Nicholas Lyndhurst, Buster Merryfield

5. Monty Python’s Flying Circus

Monty Python's Flying Circus
This British sketch comedy series is groundbreaking and features a talented ensemble cast including John Cleese, Michael Palin, and Eric Idle. It explores the absurd and satirical with a unique mix of wit and slapstick humor. The show’s inventive style is evident in its iconic sketches like the “Dead Parrot” routine and the “Ministry of Silly Walks,” which have become cultural staples. Moreover, Monty Python’s Flying Circus is a timeless classic that pushes boundaries and delivers biting social commentary through memorable characters such as the Spanish Inquisition troupe.

Premiered: October 5, 1969
Actors: John Cleese, Terry Jones, Graham Chapman

6. Father Ted

Father Ted
Set on a remote island off the coast of Ireland, this critically acclaimed sitcom takes us on a wild ride with three eccentric priests and their housekeeper. What makes this show so special is its clever mix of surreal humor and sharp wit. The stellar ensemble cast, featuring Dermot Morgan as the lovable Father Ted, Ardal O’Hanlon as the not-so-bright Father Dougal McGuire, Frank Kelly as the grumpy Father Jack Hackett, and Pauline McLynn as the devoted Mrs. Doyle, brings these characters to life.

In this offbeat comedy, we join the priests and their housekeeper as they navigate through a series of absurd situations, all while dealing with their own quirks and flaws. It’s a hilarious yet heartwarming exploration of human nature and relationships in a completely unconventional setting.

Premiered: April 21, 1995
Actors: Dermot Morgan, Ardal O’Hanlon, Frank Kelly

7. The IT Crowd

The IT Crowd
This British sitcom is all about the misadventures of a quirky trio who work in the information technology department of a big corporation. Audiences love it because it’s clever, funny, and totally relatable. The show revolves around the dynamic between Maurice Moss (Richard Ayoade) and Roy Trenneman (Chris O’Dowd), two socially awkward computer geniuses, and their manager Jen Barber (Katherine Parkinson), who is totally clueless when it comes to technology. Together, they find themselves in hilarious situations as they navigate office politics and personal dilemmas. The dialogue is sharp, the catchphrases are memorable, and the cast delivers outstanding performances. No wonder this show has received critical acclaim for its fresh approach to workplace comedy.

Premiered: February 3, 2006
Actors: Richard Ayoade, Chris O’Dowd, Katherine Parkinson

8. Mr. Bean

Mr. Bean
Let me tell you about this hilarious British sitcom that has everyone hooked. It follows the misadventures of a quirky man in a tweed suit who has a knack for finding himself in all sorts of funny situations. Rowan Atkinson, the comedic genius, brilliantly portrays the main character and his physical comedy is simply unmatched. With very few words, he manages to entertain us and keep us laughing throughout the show.

What makes this sitcom so special is Mr. Bean’s uncanny ability to turn the simplest tasks into absolute chaos. Whether it’s getting ready in the morning or going grocery shopping, you can bet that things will go hilariously wrong. And to top it off, he encounters a bunch of wacky characters along the way who add even more humor and wit to the show.

This show really captures the essence of everyday life, but with a hilarious twist. It’s the perfect escape from reality and a guaranteed way to brighten up your day. So if you’re in the mood for some good laughs and a unique brand of comedy, give Mr. Bean a watch. You won’t be disappointed!

Premiered: January 1, 1990
Actors: Rowan Atkinson

9. The Inbetweeners

The Inbetweeners
This British coming-of-age sitcom is all about the lives of four socially awkward friends who are going through the ups and downs of adolescence. They deal with stuff like relationships, school, and their own insecurities. The show’s a hit because it’s super witty, the storylines are relatable, and the actors like Simon Bird, James Buckley, Blake Harrison, and Joe Thomas do an amazing job at bringing their characters to life. The show also gets props for not sugarcoating teenage life, and for not relying on stereotypes. It lets viewers remember their own cringe-worthy and heartfelt teenage experiences.

Premiered: December 7, 2009
Actors: Simon Bird, James Buckley, Blake Harrison

10. Keeping Up Appearances

Keeping Up Appearances
Keeping Up Appearances, a sitcom created by Roy Clarke, follows the life of Hyacinth Bucket, a social-climbing snob portrayed by Patricia Routledge. Hyacinth is constantly striving to project an image of upper-class refinement. The show’s success can be attributed to its clever writing, which often puts Hyacinth in situations where her carefully constructed façade crumbles under the weight of reality. The outstanding performances of supporting cast members, including Clive Swift (Richard Bucket), Judy Cornwell (Daisy), and Geoffrey Hughes (Onslow), also contribute to the show’s popularity. By skillfully blending farce, satire, and character-driven comedy with relatable themes of family dynamics and social aspirations, Keeping Up Appearances has earned its place as a beloved classic in television entertainment.

Premiered: October 29, 1990
Actors: Clive Swift, Josephine Tewson, Judy Cornwell

11. Yes Minister

Yes Minister
This British TV series takes a satirical look at how the government operates. It follows the career of a determined but inexperienced politician and his cunning civil servant counterpart. The interaction between Jim Hacker (played by Paul Eddington) and Sir Humphrey Appleby (portrayed by Nigel Hawthorne) delves into power struggles, bureaucratic inefficiencies, and conflicting interests that often plague democratic systems. With its sharp wit, clever dialogue, and enduring themes, the show has become a classic comedy, offering valuable insights into the complexities of governance.

Premiered: February 25, 1980
Actors: Paul Eddington, Nigel Hawthorne, Derek Fowlds

Michael Bennett
Michael Bennett
With over 5 years of experience, Michael Bennett is an experienced entertainment blogger recognized for straightforward reviews. His research expertise and thoughtfully crafted blog posts make him a source for readers seeking movie and tv show recommendations.


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