TV shows often experiment with different forms of storytelling from time to time, whether it's a "very special episode" or trying out a new form. This is likely a fun experience for the actors who get to break from their usual routine and try something new.
Mockumentaries like The Office, Parks and Recreation, and Abbott Elementary are some of the most beloved sitcoms out there. It only makes sense that other shows would want to try out the format for themselves for a one-off episode. Mockumentary episodes also likely save the production some money, since a lot of the runtime can be taken up by cheap and easy-to-film talking head segments.
While not every show that tries out the mockumentary format are comedies, these episodes tend to take a slightly more comedic slant even in dramas. On the other hand, some dramas manage to use the in-universe explanation for their documentary episode to add a unique storytelling twist. The format lends itself to fresh, distinctive episodes - check out the best examples of great TV shows trying out the mockumentary style.
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Community - 'Pillows and Blankets'Photo: NBC
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Monk - 'Mr. Monk's 100th Case'Photo: USA Network
- Photo: FXX
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M*A*S*H - 'The Interview'Photo: CBS