Among all the Canadian TV shows which have released in this decade, hardly any other series can match up to the popularity and the critical acclaim that ‘Schitt’s Creek’ has received. There have been so many sitcoms made since the invention of the format, and so it is very difficult to stand out when you’re venturing into this territory. The writing and the humor really need to be top-notch and different from all the other sitcoms if such a series is to leave an impression on the audiences. The father-son duo of Eugene and Daniel Levy seem to have achieved this with their brilliant creation, ‘Schitt’s Creek’. This CBC Television original series initially premiered in 2015, and since then has continuously been able to maintain a standard other sitcoms can only aspire to.
The story of ‘Schitt’s Creek’ centers around a formerly well-to-do family, the Roses, who have now fallen on hard times. The patriarch of the family, Johnny, is a video store magnate, while his wife Moira is a former soap opera actress. Despite being successful in their professional lives, they are presently facing financial constraints after being swindled by their manager. The Roses also have two sons to look after – David and Alexis. After losing most of their wealth, they only have this small town called Schitt’s Creek left to their name. This town actually belongs to one of their sons and was bought as a birthday gift. The show focuses on how the Roses, who have moved into this town, manage to adjust to its rural lifestyle and gel with its other inhabitants who are not adept in high-society etiquettes like the Roses.
The best part about the series is that it is a laughter riot. Each episode is hilarious, entertaining and also socially conscious at the same time. If you have enjoyed watching ‘Schitt’s Creek’ and are looking for more similar shows, then we’ve got you covered. Here’s the list of best shows similar to ‘Schitt’s Creek’ that are our recommendations. You can watch several of these series like ‘Schitt’s Creek’ on Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime.
7. Fresh Off The Boat (2015-)
Just like the Roses find it difficult to adjust to their new life in the eponymous town in ‘Schitt’s Creek’, ‘Fresh Off The Boat’ is also about the difficulty a family faces in adjusting to their new surroundings. The family in question is a Taiwanese family who have recently shifted from Chinatown of Washington DC to Orlando, Florida. The central character of the series is the oldest of the three children in the family, Eddie. As his parents open a barbecue restaurant and his father takes to heart the ideals of the American dream, we see Eddie’s mother struggling to adjust to her new locality where there are not many Asians around. Eddie, who himself is quite into American culture and is a big fan of hip-hop and basketball, finds it difficult to adjust at his new school. The show is very charming, and you would fall in love with this sweet family in no time at all. The humor is ever-present, and the societal difficulties a minority family has to face in a new town is wonderfully explored in the series.
6. Black-ish (2014-)
Among the sitcoms which center around African-American families, few have been as impressive as the ABC original series ‘Black-ish‘. The show follows the lives of the upper-middle class Johnson family led by Andre and his wife Rainbow. The Johnsons live in an upscale part of the town, and to fulfill his desire to be treated by his neighbors as one of their own, Andre is always encouraging his family to be as sociable as possible. The show is hilarious, entertaining, but also thematically rich. It does not have a specific target audience in mind, and thus becomes a universal narrative to which many people from different backgrounds can relate to.
5. One Day at a Time (2017-)
The classic 70s sitcom of the same name created by Norman Lear is the main inspiration behind this Netflix original series. However, this time the show looks at the lives of a Hispanic family who have settled down in America. The central character of the series is a woman called Penelope Alvarez. She is now trying to settle down to a normal life after serving as a nurse in the army for an extended period of time. Because of her husband’s alcoholism, Penelope moved out of his house with her children, and is currently staying at her mother’s place. The narrative focuses on her life as she slowly begins to discover love once again. Besides Penelope, her daughter’s love life also becomes an important part of the series.
The original ‘One Day At A Time’ has been pretty successfully adapted by Gloria Calderon Kellett and Mike Royce into a modern setting. Of course, the social and political climate of America has changed radically since the mid-1970s, and it is very interesting to see how the showrunners have incorporated the changes into the modern series. A lot of thought has also been put into the depiction of LGBTQ characters in this show.
4. The Conners (2018-)
If you have checked out the sitcom ‘Roseanne‘ you should immediately start watching ‘The Conners‘. The former series was canceled after the lead actress, Roseanne Barr made some controversial comments on Twitter. This spin-off follows the Conners family after the death of the character Roseanne. Now the family is facing grave financial issues and they have to get by in any way they can on a very limited monthly income. The series shows us the struggles they go through and the pain they endure in such tough times. ‘The Conners’ is among those very few shows which truthfully depict the struggles of working-class people. The show is also noted for its unique style of humor.
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3. The Brady Bunch (1969-1974)
Every single honest and hardworking person deserves a chance at happiness. The leading characters of the series ‘The Brady Bunch’, Mike and Carol, are also of the same opinion when they marry. However, they have been married before and have children from their previous marriages. Thus, when the two tie the knot, their children also have to learn to adjust to the new changes in their lives. Both Carol and Mike have three children each and it is these youngsters who have a difficult time adjusting after they move in together. ‘The Brady Bunch’ became a huge cultural sensation after its release and created numerous TV and film spin-offs. The best part of the show is its brilliant writing and the performances by the cast.
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2. The Beverly Hillbillies (1962-1971)
One of the most popular sitcoms of the 1960s, ‘The Beverly Hillbillies’ centers around the lives of the Clampett family as they move from their modest rural household to a mansion in California’s Beverly Hills. The way the Clampetts get rich is also rather interesting. Their family home was near an oil-rich swamp, and an oil company paid them $25 million to move away from their residence. With such a huge amount of money, they buy their Beverly Hills mansion. However, their neighbors are not happy with the fact that a bunch of rugged hillbillies have encroached upon their posh neighborhood. The Clampetts’ interactions with their neighbors and the various ways in which they try to adjust to their new lifestyle is what becomes the source of the show’s humor. The show does an impressive job in questioning the cultural elite and takes a scathing look at the way such people are ready to deem others as worthless.
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1. Mama’s Family (1983-1990)
Vicki Lawrence stars as the staunch matriarch Thelma in this NBC sitcom which centers around the life of the Harper family. Thelma is a no-nonsense woman with a sharp tongue who does not let anyone step out of line. The entire family looks up to her and nobody will dare to do anything which Thelma would not approve of. Despite her rough exterior, Thelma has a large heart and cares for everyone in her family. ‘Mama’s Family’ has its own unique brand of humor that sets it apart from the other sitcoms. The performances by the cast members and their equation with each other are the highlights of the show.
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