Originally consisting of repetitive characters and banal laugh tracks, sitcoms have evolved into an extremely effective source of entertainment now-a-days. According to me, they are the greatest medication for stress ever invented. After a hectic day of work, a 20-25 minute episode feels like a gentle caress of joy to the soul. Sitcoms teleport us into the world of their characters; these characters could be part of a quirky family or some hedonistic group of friends. Through the ages, these characters have endowed us with some of the most memorable moments ever broadcast on television.
Ranging from slightly quirky to downright eccentric, they have left an indelible mark on our memory and even a hint of their thought stirs up a feeling of gentle nostalgia in our hearts. So, let’s chart down some of these iconic characters that over the years have become one of the permanent members of our life. Here’s the list of top sitcom characters ever. Honorable Mentions: Liz Lemon, Cosmo Kramer, Joey Tribbiani, Ari Gold, Abed Nadir, Rick Sanchez.
8. Andy Dwyer (Parks and Recreation)
Andy is a fictional character appearing on the cult TV show parks and recreation; he was portrayed by Chris Pratt, whose performance on the show catapulted him into super-stardom. Originally signed up temporarily and for a few episodes, his stint became permanent because of the universal acclaim his character received. Andy was dim-witted, similar to friend’s Joey, and was extremely like-able and humorous. Chris Pratt was memorable both as Andy and as the alter egos of Andy (i.e. Johnny Karate and Inspector Burt Macklin).
7. Phil Dunphy (Modern Family)
Phil Dunphy, portrayed by the enigmatic Ty Burrel, is Modern Family’s breakout character. Although the show packs more hysterical characters like Cameroon and Gloria, it is Phil whose quotes and pop-philosophies set the internet rolling. Here is my favorite Phil quote- “When life gives you lemonade, make lemons. Life will be all like whaaaaat?”
6. Dwight Schrute (The Office)
Dwight is an extremely competent and competitive salesman, Beet farmer and bread and breakfast home owner. Along with it, he is extremely incompetent when it comes to social skills and common sense. He is the office oddball and the target of co-worker’s pranks. His antics along with his rivalry with co-worker Jim Halpert gave us some of the most memorable laughs in ‘The Office’. Despite his tough demeanor, he is essentially kind, and means well, but is too inept socially inept to express it.
5. Sheldon Cooper (The Big Bang Theory)
‘The Big Bang Theory’ is arguably the most popular sitcom of our generation. Sheldon Cooper is the shows’ breakout character. He was a former child prodigy, but is devoid of any social skills. Most of the shows’ humor is derived around Sheldon and his antics. Initially, Sheldon showed signs of asexuality but later on gets in a relationship with Amy. Sheldon is un-empathetic, intolerant and obsessive –compulsive. Sheldon also shows difficulty in comprehending irony and sarcasm. His far reaching legacy has earned him the honor of having an actual asteroid named after him (246247 Sheldon cooper). There is a possibility of an origin spin-off titled ‘Young Sheldon’, but without Jim Parsons on board, I can’t say I am very excited.
4. Chandler Bing (FRIENDS)
The inclusion of Chandler in the upper half of the list has two reasons. Firstly, I don’t want to face the wrath of Die-Hard friends’ fans and secondly, because over the years Chandler has become the Poster boy of sarcasm on the Internet. Chandler could easily be the most quick-witted fictional character ever conceived. If he lived in the Internet age, he would be the guy with all the top comments on YouTube and Facebook.
3. David Brent (The Office)
For most of us, who are more familiar with the US version of ‘The Office’, David Brent is the character on whom Michael Scott of ‘The Office US’ was based upon. Brent is delusional, hypocritical and most of the show revolves around his idiosyncrasies. The signature trait of Brent is his obliviousness on how he is perceived by his co-workers. Despite his politically incorrect opinions on ethnic minorities and homosexuals, Brent is extremely likeable due of his clean intentions and buffoon antics
2. Ron Swanson (Parks and Recreation)
The relationship between Ron and Leslie (The show’s lead and another memorable character) is unarguably televisions greatest platonic relationship. Leslie and Ron are polar opposites. On one hand, Leslie is goofy, social, liberal and pleasant, while on the other hand Ron is detached, reserved, staunch masculine and a Libertarian. Many of Ron’s traits have been derived from Offerman’s personality, including his love for woodwork and hard liquor. Ron has a fetish for whisky, meat and breakfast food; he hates both his ex-wives, both of whom are named Tammy. Ron is a man of few words and extremely unapologetic about his opinions. Ron is very clingy of his personal space and appears to be disinterested in other people’s lives, though he cares deeply about his colleagues, especially Leslie. Critics have hailed as one of the greatest TV characters in decades and I couldn’t agree more.
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1. George Costanza (Seinfeld)
The character of George is based slightly based on the show’s co-creator, Larry David (the alter ego developed later on as the protagonist of Curb Your Enthusiasm). In the first couple of seasons, George was comparatively restrained, but as the series progressed, his personality became more outlandish. George has a lot of psychological issues including: narcissism, perpetual lying, and low self-esteem, anger issues, selfishness .He is irresponsible and perpetually weasels out of responsibilities. In a cast full of neurotics, George stands out as the Best among equals.
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