The Best Sitcoms on Peacock

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The Best Sitcoms on Peacock

NBC has basically owned the network sitcom since the early ‘80s. Ever since Cheers premiered in 1982, NBC has pumped out smart, funny, well-produced sitcoms, leaving an indelible mark on the form and setting the standards for network comedy. So it’s no surprise that Peacock, NBC’s new-ish streaming service, is full of fantastic sitcoms. If you want to relive great comedies like Cheers, Parks and Recreation, The Office, and 30 Rock, Peacock is the streamer for you.

Given the vagaries of the TV business, though, there are many classic NBC sitcoms you won’t find on Peacock, from ‘80s hits like Family Ties and Night Court, to ‘90s juggernauts Friends and Seinfeld, and up through more modern shows like The Good Place and Great News. Even NBC stalwart Will & Grace, whose final reunion season was originally on Peacock, is no longer streaming there. Like any streamer, Peacock isn’t a one-and-done solution for anybody trying to recreate those days of Must See TV.

Peacock makes up for some of those absences with a grab-bag of iconic sitcoms from other networks. ABC’s Modern Family and Roseanne (both the original and the ill-fated one-season revival) are both on the service, as is CBS’s Everybody Loves Raymond. The entire run of Brooklyn Nine-Nine, from its original run on Fox to its current era on NBC, is streaming on here. And some great new sitcoms, both Peacock originals (Rutherford Falls, Girls5Eva) and NBC/Peacock hybrids (A.P. Bio, Kenan) are streamable through the service.

Peacock might not be the single best streaming service for sitcoms, but what it lacks in depth it more than makes up with quality. This list’s top 10 beats every streamer’s current sitcom lineup except Hulu’s. So let’s get to the list, starting with the oldest show on here.

20. The Munsters

Creators: Allan Burns, Chris Hayward
Stars: Fred Gwynne, Yvonne De Carlo, Al Lewis, Butch Patrick, Pat Priest
Original Network: CBS
Original Run: 1964-1966

Watch on Peacock

The lesser of the two monster family sitcoms of the ‘60s still has more than its fair share of charm. It’s still impressive how well Fred Gwynne makes the patently absurd role of “wise and warmly paternalistic Frankenstein” work, and Al Lewis’s Vaudeville schtick as the vampiric Grandpa somehow still holds up despite feeling like a direct portal back to the early 20th century. It’s a deeply silly show, something that will basically pass straight through your eyes and ears and be immediately forgotten, but you’ll have some truly goofy fun in the process.


19. Saved by the Bell

Creator: Sam Bobrick
Stars: Haskiri Velazquez, Mitchell Hoog, Josie Totah, Alycia Pascual-Peña, Belmont Cameli, Dexter Darden, John Michael Higgins, Elizabeth Berkley Lauren, Mario Lopez, Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Tiffani Thiessen
Original Network: Peacock
Original Run: 2020-

Watch on Peacock

Sorry, old school Bellheads: we’re only talking about the recent revival here. The original show is on Peacock, but it holds no value for anybody who wasn’t a kid back when it originally aired; without that nostalgic lens it’s just a terribly written, poorly acted kids’ sitcom no better than the Saturday morning cartoons it once aired alongside. Last year’s reboot, though, is a smart, absurd, occasionally vicious satire of the affluent, lilywhite world of the original, with the privileged students of Bayside High making room for new transfers who are bussed in from a less wealthy neighborhood. It playfully riffs on the original throughout, with some of the original cast in tow, and occasionally bites down hard when needed. The focus is where it should be, though, on the new students, and the result is a surprisingly funny reboot that’s much better than the show that inspired it.


18. Kenan

Creator: Jackie Clarke, David Caspe
Stars: Kenan Thompson, Chris Redd, Kimrie Lewis, Don Johnson, Dani Lane, Dannah Lane
Original Network: NBC
Original Run: 2021-

Watch on Peacock

Kenan comes down to chemistry. Kenan Thompson, Chris Redd and Don Johnson are fantastic together, with Thompson and Redd playing brothers and Johnson playing the father of Thompson’s departed wife. Together the three raise Thompson’s two daughters (who, as played by Dani and Dannah Lane, are by far the least annoying young child actors since at least Modern Family) while also balancing Thompson’s stressful career as the host of Atlanta’s second most popular morning show. (Yes, Kenan’s playing a version of himself, but one who starred on a popular family sitcom instead of appearing on SNL for like 20 seasons and counting.) The workplace scenes aren’t as strong as the ones at home, although Kimrie Lewis is great as Kenan’s boss and love interest. It’s not just the chops of Kenan, Redd and Johnson that make the show fly, though—there’s some genuinely hilarious writing on display here, from a staff full of great sitcoms and comedy writers.


17. Girls5Eva

Creator: Meredith Scardino
Stars: Sara Bareilles, Busy Philipps, Paula Pell, Renée Elise Goldsberry
Original Network: Peacock
Original Run: 2021-

Watch on Peacock

Between Girls5Eva and A.P. Bio, Paula Pell is the comedy queen of Peacock. The longtime SNL writer stars alongside Busy Philipps, Hamilton’s Renée Elise Goldsberry, and singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles as the members of a minor girl group from the ‘90s mounting an improbable reunion in this sitcom from former Letterman, Colbert Report, and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt writer Meredith Scardino. Adjacent to the world of Tina Fey’s sitcoms (she’s a producer and actually appears in the show as Dolly Parton), Girls5Eva has a similar feel to Schmidt or 30 Rock, but a slower pace, which works to its advantage. It’s a canny, clever look at pop culture in both the ‘90s and today, and a must-watch for comedy fans with Peacock subscriptions.


16. Grounded for Life

Creator: Bill Martin, Mike Schiff
Stars: Donal Logue, Megyn Price, Kevin Corrigan, Lynsey Bartilson, Griffin Frazen, Jake Burbage, Bret Harrison, Richard Riehle
Original Network: Fox
Original Run: 2001-2005

Watch on Peacock

Grounded for Life ambled along on Fox for five seasons in the first half of the ‘00s with minimal hype and moderate success, leaving behind a large (and largely ignored) body of quality comedy when it ended in 2005. Much of the show’s appeal lies on Donal Logue, the deeply charismatic and always shaggy actor who first came to fame as MTV’s Jimmy the Cabdriver in the ‘90s, and who later starred on FX’s fantastic Terriers and Fox’s Batman origin series Gotham. Logue has a knack for feeling utterly natural, no matter how ridiculous his role might get, and here he basically disappears into his role of a thirtysomething parent of teenagers. Indie film stalwart Kevin Corrigan also leaves a mark as Logue’s shady, criminally motivated younger brother. Like a couple of other shows later on this list, Grounded for Life is a blue collar, working class sitcom that feels appropriately lived in.


15. 3rd Rock from the Sun

Creator: Bonnie and Terry Turner
Stars: John Lithgow, Kristen Johnston, Jane Curtin, French Stewart, Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Original Network: NBC
Original Run: 1996-2001

Watch on Peacock

Here’s proof that sitcoms don’t really need to have any drama in them to be good. 3rd Rock from the Sun is a live-action cartoon, a patently ridiculous sci-fi comedy about aliens masquerading as humans, that soars on the back of John Lithgow’s committed (and truly unhinged) performance. If you ever wanted to see Lithgow’s Buckaroo Banzai character as the head of a family sitcom, here’s your chance. SNL legend Jane Curtin puts her ultimate straight woman persona to good use as Lithgow’s professional colleague and eventual love interest, and Kristen Johnston, a young Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and an over-the-top French Stewart round out the accomplished cast.


14. Rutherford Falls

Creator: Ed Helms, Michael Schur, Sierra Teller Ornelas
Stars: Ed Helms, Michael Greyeyes, Jana Schmieding, Jesse Leigh, Dustin Milligan
Original Network: Peacock
Original Run: 2021-

Watch on Peacock

The newest show on the list is also Peacock’s best original so far—as our review declared when it premiered last month. The latest Michael Schur sitcom, which was co-created by Navajo showrunner and veteran sitcom writer Sierra Teller Ornelas, has all of the hallmarks of his shows—witty banter, believable characters who largely interact with each other like real people, and a diverse cast built around a well-known white lead (in this case, Ed Helms). Helms is the nominal star, but Jana Schmieding is its true center, serving as both his best friend and cultural foil in a battle over how to best depict colonial and Indigenous history. With a large Indigenous writing staff and cast, Rutherford Falls breaks ground quietly, exploring how European settlers’ Indigenous genocide still has cultural and economic ramifications centuries later—but in a way that’s rarely heavy-handed, and always surrounded by the kind of likable comedy you expect from a Schur-produced show. It’s the best new sitcom of 2021 so far, and if future seasons are as good you can expect it to jump up this list in a hurry.


13. Everybody Loves Raymond

Creator: Philip Rosenthal
Stars: Ray Romano, Patricia Heaton, Brad Garrett, Madylin Sweeten, Doris Roberts, Peter Boyle, Monica Horan
Original Network: CBS
Original Run: 1996-2005

Watch on Peacock

Here’s what consistency gets you. Everybody Loves Raymond is a fine, funny, perfectly competent family sitcom elevated by a fantastic cast (especially Peter Boyle and Doris Roberts) and a consistent level of quality. Ray Romano wasn’t yet the great character actor he’s grown into, but he was probably better at acting than fellow stand-up Jerry Seinfeld, albeit in a far more conventional sitcom. Raymond aired on CBS during its original run, and in a sense is the ideal version of the CBS sitcom of the ‘90s and ‘00s—a traditional, family-friendly sitcom that felt a little outdated when it launched, but had good writing and a good cast and thus sailed on peacefully for almost a full decade.


12. A.P. Bio

Creator: Mike O’Brien
Stars: Glenn Howerton, Patton Oswalt, Lyric Lewis, Mary Sohn, Jean Villepique, Paula Pell, Aparna Brielle, Nick Peine, Allisyn Ashley Arm, Eddie Leavy, Jacob Houston, Spence Moore II, Sari Arambulo, Elizabeth Alderfer
Original Network: NBC; Peacock (Season 3)
Original Run: 2018-

Watch on Peacock

A.P. Bio has quietly become one of the best sitcoms on TV today due to the strength of its ensemble. It’s in full display in an episode like “Wednesday Morning, 8 A.M,” where instead of juggling two or maybe three storylines like a typical sitcom episode, it presents a series of interconnected vignettes, each of which focuses on a different major or recurring character at Whitlock High. It gives the entire cast a chance to shine and also acts as a good introduction to pretty much every character on the show. It’s a modern-day “22 Short Films About Springfield,” but from a series that continues chugging along as TV’s most underrated sitcom.


11. Good Times

Creator: Eric Monte and Mike Evans
Developer: Norman Lear
Stars: Esther Rolle, John Amos, Ja’net Dubois, Ralph Carter, Jimmie Walker, Bern Nadette Stanis, Johnny Brown, Janet Jackson, Ben Powers
Original Network: CBS
Original Run: 1974-1979

Watch on Peacock

Good Times is a tale of two shows. The first is a socially conscious sitcom about a poor but proud Black family living in public housing in Chicago, with Esther Rolle and John Amos playing the parents who struggle with underemployment or demeaning jobs while preserving their dignity. The second is a catchphrase comedy based around their oldest son, Jimmie Walker’s J.J., who, with his slogan “Dy-no-mite!” and exaggerated indolence, was essentially a stereotype. He was the show’s breakout character, though, its Fonz or Urkel, and came to dominate it after the first season—to the point that both Rolle and Amos left the show at different points, the latter permanently after the third season. There was still some sharp commentary and smart comedy in later seasons, but the first year is a classic Norman Lear sitcom with progressive politics and a strong viewpoint, while the rest of the show is basically just a goofy network sitcom.


10. Everybody Hates Chris

Creator: Chris Rock, Ali LeRoi
Stars: Tyler James Williams, Terry Crews, Tichina Arnold, Tequan Richmond, Imani Hakim, Vincent Martella
Original Network: UPN; The CW (Seasons 2-4)
Original Run: 2005-2009

Watch on Peacock

Chris Rock’s semi-autobiographical sitcom remains an underrated treat. Based on Rock’s teenage years, the ‘80s set comedy is a realistic and relatable look at one young man’s attempts to find himself while trying to fit in at school and at home. It’s not as blatantly, panderingly nostalgic as other sitcoms set in the past, and rarely as melodramatic as something like The Wonder Years. It’s a smart, well-written sitcom with a strong voice and setting, and great performances from Tyler James Williams, Terry Crews, Tichina Arnold, and more.


9. Modern Family

Creator: Christopher Lloyd, Steven Levitan
Stars: Ed O’Neill, Sofia Vergara, Julie Bowen, Ty Burrell, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Eric Stonestreet, Sarah Hyland, Ariel Winter, Nolan Gould, Rico Rodriguez, Aubrey Anderson-Emmons, Jeremy Maguire, Reid Ewing
Original Network: ABC
Original Run: 2009-2020

Watch on Peacock

Modern Family is a good warning about what happens when a show runs on for too long. Initially a refreshing combo of a traditional family sitcom and the kind of laugh track-free single camera comedy that came of age in the ‘00s, Modern Family launched with a talented cast and a sharp angle on how the concept of family had changed over the decades. If it had ended after six or seven seasons it would have a better reputation today. Instead it went on for 11 seasons in total, the kind of run that few sitcoms can bear. (Cheers and Frasier might be the only two to run that long and remain consistently good.) Still, even those later seasons had some great episodes, and the core cast—particularly Ty Burrell, Ed O’Neill, and Julie Bowen—made it work without their characters devolving too deeply into cartoonish versions of themselves. Although it could be a bit tiresome and annoying at its worst, it was genuinely good for several seasons, and remained generally likable even during its long decline.


8. Superstore

Creator: Justin Spitzer
Stars: America Ferrera, Ben Feldman, Lauren Ash, Colton Dunn, Nico Santos, Nichole Sakura, Mark McKinney, Kaliko Kauahi
Original Network: NBC
Original Run: 2015-2021

Watch on Peacock

Justin Spitzer’s sitcom would probably be considered an all-time classic if it aired during an era when a significant number of TV viewers still watched the broadcast networks. As is, it’s a very good show waiting to be discovered by anybody who missed its original run. This smart, warm comedy about a big box chain store took its influence from some of the same classic workplace comedies that inspired The Office, but never leaned quite as heavily into cringe comedy. The chemistry between its likable leads (America Ferrera and Ben Feldman) gave it a bit of that “Sam and Diane” energy, while comedy pros Mark McKinney, Lauren Ash and Colton Dunn gave it the comic charge it needed to run for six seasons.


7. 30 Rock

Creator: Tina Fey
Stars: Tina Fey, Tracy Morgan, Jane Krakowski, Jack McBrayer, Scott Adsit, Judah Friedlander, Alec Baldwin
Original Network: NBC
Original Run: 2006-2013

Watch on Peacock

30 Rock sums up the risks and rewards of a joke-a-second comedy: when the writers were on, this live-action cartoon was one of the funniest shows in TV history. When they were off, it could be almost cringe-worthy. Fortunately Tina Fey and co.’s batting average was pretty high for most of the show’s run, and even when the material was a little weak, a stellar cast of comedians and actors (Tracy Morgan, Jane Krakowski, Alec Baldwin, Jack McBrayer, Scott Adsit, and more) could often make it work. Like The Simpsons, you can basically queue up any episode of 30 Rock and find something to laugh at; unlike The Simpsons, it had the good sense to wrap after only seven seasons.


6. Roseanne

Creator: Matt Williams, Roseanne Barr, Marcy Carsey, Tom Werner
Stars: Roseanne, John Goodman, Laurie Metcalf, Sara Gilbert, Michael Fishman, Lecy Goranson, Natalie West, Sarah Chalke, Emma Kenney
Original Network: ABC
Original Run: 1989-1997; 2018

Watch on Peacock

Before she permanently nuked her reputation and career through her unhinged social media, Roseanne (formerly Barr, formerly Arnold) was the star of the best ‘80s and ‘90s sitcom about working class America. The blue collar milieu wasn’t laid on too thick, but was always present within the show, at a time when the disparity between the haves and have-nots grew exponentially. Much of the show’s success can be credited to John Goodman and Laurie Metcalf, two world class actors who are as adept at comedy as they are drama—a skill that’s vital for a sitcom that regularly turned melodramatic. A testament to how strong the show’s cast and concept was: when it was revived 20 years after its initial cancellation, it became one of the most popular shows on TV again, and has continued on for multiple seasons after the firing of its former star.


5. Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Creator: Dan Goor, Michael Schur
Stars: Andy Samberg, Stephanie Beatriz, Terry Crews, Melissa Fumero, Joe Lo Truglio, Chelsea Peretti, Andre Braugher, Dirk Blocker, Joel McKinnon Miller
Original Network: Fox (seasons 1 to 5); NBC (seasons 6 to 8)
Original Run: 2013-

Watch on Peacock

Dan Goor and Michael Schur’s police comedy has maybe been shaded a little by real-life events—it is understandably hard for many to view cops as a funny group of good-time buddies, even when they’re played by such an amazing cast. If you can overlook the politics, though, you’ll find a sitcom that brilliantly combines the MTM Studios approach to ensemble comedies with unfettered cartoon silliness. This whole list is full of amazing casts, but Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s core of Andy Samberg, Andre Braugher, Stephanie Beatriz, Melissa Fumero, Terry Crews, Joe Lo Truglio and Chelsea Peretti might be the single best one on the list. Every actor has a defined, unique role that they play to perfection, and that contrasts beautifully with every other actor. This isn’t the best sitcom in the Schur-verse, but it might be the most consistent, and the most immediately likable.


4. Frasier

Creator: David Angell, Peter Casey, David Lee
Stars: Kelsey Grammer, Jane Leeves, David Hyde Pierce, Peri Gilpin, John Mahoney
Original Network: NBC
Original Run: 1993-2004

Watch on Peacock

Frasier is the platonic ideal of the spinoff because it took what worked about the original from a creative standpoint while changing pretty much every other aspect of the show. When Frasier Crane left Boston and the comfort of Cheers for Seattle, his world went from one built around the ersatz family of a bar to one focused on his real family. It was as well-written as Cheers, with characters that felt realistic no matter how unlikely the situations became. The addition of his even fussier brother Niles let Kelsey Grammer’s Frasier slide into more of a leading man role, with David Hyde Pierce adopting the clownish stuffed shirt pomposity that defined Grammer’s time on Cheers. Their relationship with each other and with their gruff, everyman father (played wonderfully by John Mahoney) fueled a brilliantly written and acted sitcom that lasted for 11 seasons—exactly as long as the show it grew out of.


3. The Office

Based on: The Office by Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant
Developed by: Greg Daniels
Stars: Steve Carell, Rainn Wilson, John Krasinski, Jenna Fischer, B.J. Novak, Leslie David Baker, Brian Baumgartner, Kate Flannery, Angela Kinsey, Oscar Nunez, Phyllis Smith, Mindy Kaling, Phil Lieberstein, Creed Bratton, Craig Robinson, Ed Helms, Ellie Kemper, Zach Woods, Amy Ryan, James Spader, Catherine Tate
Original Network: NBC
Original Run: 2005-2013

Watch on Peacock

At its peak, the US version of The Office could be the best show on this entire list. Seasons two through six or so comprise one of the genuinely great sitcom runs, a body of work up there with the best of Seinfeld or The Simpsons. It had a weak start, and became a sad parody of itself over its last few seasons, but during that sweet spot The Office was both hilarious and able to wring genuine emotion out of Michael Scott’s insecurities and Jim and Pam’s relationship. And in terms of sheer size and consistency, it might have had the best extended cast of any sitcom. It might not have the precision or laser focus of the original, but that’s the difference between American and British TV.


2. Parks and Recreation

Creator: Greg Daniels, Michael Schur
Stars: Amy Poehler, Rashida Jones, Aziz Ansari, Nick Offerman, Aubrey Plaza, Chris Pratt, Adam Scott, Rob Lowe, Retta, Jim O’Heir, Billy Eichner, Paul Schneider
Original Network: NBC
Original Run: 2009-2015

Watch on Peacock

After a short, shaky first season as a too-familiar Office protege, Parks & Rec quickly adjusted into one of the greatest sitcoms of all time. When you talk about the classic sitcom casts, where every actor was perfect for the role, and every role was equally important, Parks & Rec has to be near the top of the list. With equally strong writing and the most fully developed sitcom town this side of Springfield, Parks & Rec was the ideal sitcom during its six year run.


1. Cheers

Creator: Glen and Les Charles, James Burrows
Stars: Ted Danson, Shelley Long, Nicholas Colasanto, Rhea Perlman, George Wendt, John Ratzenberger, Kelsey Grammer, Woody Harrelson, Kirstie Alley, Bebe Neuwirth
Original Network: NBC
Original Run: 1982-1993

Watch on Peacock

Seinfeld might have recast the sitcom in its image, but Cheers perfected the form, running through 11 seasons without ever running out of charm or laughs. Cheers is rightly lauded as one of the deepest and best sitcom casts ever, but its writing might be unparalleled. Never bound by genre convention, and often willing to experiment with its storytelling rhythms, Cheers never grew old despite rarely leaving the bar for over a decade.



Senior editor Garrett Martin writes about videogames, comedy, travel, theme parks, wrestling, and anything else that gets in his way. He’s also on Twitter @grmartin.

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