I haven’t had the greatest relationships with TV sitcoms. Sure, the more modern ones WITHOUT laugh-tracks, I can get into; I consider Arrested Development to be the funniest damn show of the decade.
But network shows with laugh tracks, I never trust them. They try to tell you what’s funny, and if you didn’t laugh, you probably ‘didn’t get it’.
So I fianlly checked out The Big Bang Theory since I’ve heard some things about it, along the lines of ‘finally, a sit-com geared for OUR generation’. And that I can say is true.
Not a minute goes by in the first episode that a social networking media isn’t name dropped (facebook, myspace, blog, etc). In fact, it’s done in such a way, I feel that the show is more intended for an older audience who vaguely knows of these medias by name, in that kinda of “oh I burned a CD today… shouldn’t have stood so close to the camp fire with my walkman” kinda way.
I have to say I was disappointed in the first episode. Laughs were dropped in at the end of math and advanced physics jokes that I don’t think any studio audience would collectively get… let alone understand it was a joke at all.
But even though I only verbally laughed-out-loud (see LOL) ONCE in the entire episode, I noticed the characters were starting to grow on me. Yes, they’re eccentric and over the top, but that tends to be the point of all sitcom characters, or we wouldn’t have a comical situation.
And by the second episode, IT HIT ME.
Sitcoms, don’t actually have to be funny for you to watch and enjoy them. All a sitcom needs is likeable characters that, plain and simple, SAY STUFF.
As much as your friends come over and may say something witty or humorous that you laugh at even if it isn’t terribly funny, when you watch a sit-com, you’re amongst your ‘friends’, listening to their problems and screwy solutions.
It’s that simple. Granted, you’re more of a fly on the wall in this case, but you know these people and their daily dilemmas, and you wanna be there when they get through it.
And if you happen to laugh once in a while, all the better.