The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

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List Criteria: Episodic comedy shows that initially debuted on British television

Funniest British TV shows ever produced, ranked by worldwide comedy fans. British sitcoms - or "Britcoms" as they are sometimes called in the US - are known for their crisp dialogue, biting wit and sardonic look at modern life in the UK. Shows like The Office (which inspired the US series), Are You Being Served and Absolutely Fabulous present traditional settings and scenes, but populated by outlandish, even demented, eccentrics, some of whom have become among the nation's most iconic characters. (Both David Brent of The Office and Basil Fawlty of Fawlty Towers have been voted near the top of Ranker's "Funniest TV Characters of All Time" list.)

Additionally, though US sitcoms tend to take one of a few reliable formats - a traditional three-camera set-up in front of a studio audience, say, or the "mockumentary" style of shows like The Office and Parks and Recreation - British sitcoms tend towards the more experimental and daring. Blackadder, for example, sets each new season in a different time period, with relations of the original two characters: Blackadder and Baldrick. Peep Show as well tells a rather familiar story about two wacky roommates, but through a unique POV perspective, with the actors performing largely in voice-over.

What are the best British comedy series? Numerous English comedies on this list - as from the obvious The Office - have inspired American remakes, though the vast majority of these - such as the US versions of Fawlty Towers and Men Behaving Badly - have not met with similar success across the pond.
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  1. 1
    + 2,072
    - 398
    Fawlty Towers is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    the people's #1
    Fawlty Towers John Cleese, Prunella Scales, Andrew Sachs

  2. 2
    + 1,743
    - 448
    Blackadder is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    most listed
    Blackadder Rowan Atkinson, Brian Blessed, Elspet Gray

  3. 3
    + 1,146
    - 411
    Father Ted is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Father Ted Ardal O'Hanlon, Dermot Morgan, Pauline McLynn

  4. 4
    + 1,441
    - 597
    Keeping Up Appearances is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Keeping Up Appearances Patricia Routledge, Geoffrey Hughes, Clive Swift

  5. 5
    + 1,327
    - 528
    Are You Being Served? is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Are You Being Served? Mollie Sugden, John Inman, Frank Thornton

  6. 6
    + 1,138
    - 279
    Only Fools and Horses is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Only Fools and Horses David Jason, Roger Lloyd-Pack, Paul Barber

  7. 7
    + 1,245
    - 372
    Monty Python's Flying Circus is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Monty Python's Flying Circus Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam

  8. 8
    + 947
    - 418
    Red Dwarf is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Red Dwarf Chris Barrie, Craig Charles, Danny John-Jules

  9. 9
    + 1,295
    - 424
    The IT Crowd is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    The IT Crowd Chris O'Dowd, Richard Ayoade, Katherine Parkinson

  10. 10
    + 1,011
    - 483
    Absolutely Fabulous is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Absolutely Fabulous Jennifer Saunders, Joanna Lumley, Julia Sawalha

  11. 11
    + 1,064
    - 364
    The Vicar of Dibley is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    The Vicar of Dibley Dawn French, Liz Smith, Emma Chambers

  12. 12
    + 866
    - 501
    The Office is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    The Office Ricky Gervais, Martin Freeman, Mackenzie Crook

  13. 13
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    - 300
    The Young Ones is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    The Young Ones Rik Mayall, Alexei Sayle, Ade Edmondson

  14. 14
    + 1,086
    - 246
    Mr. Bean is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by VanessaHawelu
    Mr. Bean Rowan Atkinson, Robin Driscoll, Matilda Ziegler

  15. 15
    + 787
    - 345
    Black Books is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Black Books Dylan Moran, Bill Bailey, Tamsin Greig

  16. 16
    + 732
    - 314
    'Allo 'Allo! is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    'Allo 'Allo! Gorden Kaye, Carmen Silvera, Vicki Michelle

  17. 17
    + 725
    - 343
    The Inbetweeners is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    The Inbetweeners Belinda Stewart-Wilson, Greg Davies, Blake Harrison

  18. 18
    + 587
    - 202
    One Foot in the Grave is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    One Foot in the Grave Richard Wilson, Annette Crosbie, Angus Deayton

  19. 19
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    - 366
    Peep Show is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Peep Show David Mitchell, Robert Webb, Matt King

  20. 20
    + 625
    - 333
    Yes Minister is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Yes Minister Paul Eddington, Nigel Hawthorne, Derek Fowlds

  21. 21
    + 542
    - 254
    Open All Hours is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Open All Hours David Jason, Ronnie Barker, Stephanie Cole

  22. 22
    + 523
    - 241
    Dad's Army is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Dad's Army Arthur Lowe, John Le Mesurier, Clive Dunn

  23. 23
    + 525
    - 353
    Coupling is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Coupling Gina Bellman, Jack Davenport, Sarah Alexander

  24. 24
    + 550
    - 247
    The Thin Blue Line is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    The Thin Blue Line Rowan Atkinson, Mark Addy, James Dreyfus

  25. 25
    + 409
    - 347
    I'm Alan Partridge is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    I'm Alan Partridge Steve Coogan, Phil Cornwell, Simon Greenall

  26. 26
    + 447
    - 207
    Porridge is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Porridge Ronnie Barker, Brian Wilde, Fulton Mackay

  27. 27
    + 449
    - 249
    Jeeves and Wooster is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Jeeves and Wooster Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, Robert Daws

  28. 28
    + 536
    - 210
    As Time Goes By is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by alanviets
    As Time Goes By Judi Dench, Geoffrey Palmer, Moira Brooker

  29. 29
    + 433
    - 268
    Men Behaving Badly is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Men Behaving Badly Rob Schneider, Dina Spybey-Waters, Ron Eldard

  30. 30
    + 392
    - 243
    Spaced is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    added by PeteBoyle
    Spaced Jessica Hynes, Simon Pegg, Julia Deakin

  31. 31
    + 510
    - 181
    Blackadder's Christmas Carol is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Blackadder's Christmas Carol Rowan Atkinson, Rony Robinson, Stephen Fry

  32. 32
    + 409
    - 283
    My Family is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    My Family Robert Lindsay, Zoë Wanamaker, Gabriel Thomson

  33. 33
    + 391
    - 242
    Bottom is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Bottom Adrian Edmondson, Rik Mayall, Steven O'Donnell

  34. 34
    + 333
    - 154
    Steptoe and Son is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Steptoe and Son Wilfrid Brambell, Harry H. Corbett, Frank Thornton

  35. 35
    + 396
    - 206
    A Bit of Fry and Laurie is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    A Bit of Fry and Laurie Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, Deborah Norton

  36. 36
    + 394
    - 238
    Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em Michael Crawford, Dick Bentley, Michele Dotrice

  37. 37
    + 424
    - 211
    The Good Life is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    added by Leslie2
    The Good Life Richard Briers, Felicity Kendal, Penelope Keith British sitcom produced by the BBC that ran from 1975 to 1978. It was written by Bob Larbey and John Esmonde. In 2004, it came 9th in Britain's Best Sitcom. In the United States, it aired on various

    ;
  38. 38
    + 340
    - 247
    The Royle Family is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    The Royle Family Ricky Tomlinson, Sue Johnston, Caroline Aherne

  39. 39
    + 514
    - 238
    Little Britain is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by VanessaHawelu
    Little Britain Matt Lucas, David Walliams, Tom Baker

  40. 40
    + 326
    - 232
    On the Buses is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    On the Buses Reg Varney, Stephen Lewis, Cicely Courtneidge

  41. 41
    + 413
    - 257
    To the Manor Born is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    To the Manor Born Penelope Keith, Alexander Armstrong, Angela Thorne

  42. 42
    + 462
    - 330
    Mrs. Brown's Boys is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Mrs. Brown's Boys Brendan O'Carroll, Jennifer Gibney, Dermot O'Neill

  43. 43
    + 349
    - 260
    Extras is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Extras Ricky Gervais, Ashley Jensen, Stephen Merchant

  44. 44
    + 356
    - 254
    Gavin & Stacey is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    Gavin & Stacey Joanna Page, Mathew Horne, Alison Steadman

  45. 45
    + 410
    - 146
    The Benny Hill Show is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by Erik the Redd
    The Benny Hill Show Benny Hill, Nicholas Parsons, Patricia Hayes

  46. 46
    + 251
    - 198
    Outnumbered is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Outnumbered Samantha Bond, Hugh Dennis, Anna Skellern

  47. 47
    + 500
    - 298
    Miranda is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Miranda Miranda Hart, Patricia Hodge, Tom Ellis

  48. 48
    + 202
    - 183
    The Mighty Boosh is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    often listed & added by Booksflavia
    The Mighty Boosh Julian Barratt, Noel Fielding, Michael Fielding

  49. 49
    + 181
    - 72
    Doc Martin is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time

    added by keith-e-spear
    Doc Martin Trials and tribulations of a socially challenged doctor in Cornwall, England

    ;
  50. 50
    + 360
    - 218
    French & Saunders is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best British Sitcoms of All Time


    French & Saunders Dawn French, Jennifer Saunders, Simon Brint

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