Entertainment

Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People  

Ranker TV
22.3k votes 3k voters 45.9k views 43 items

List Rules Vote up the shows that seem super dumb, but are actually some of the smartest series on television.

There’s nothing wrong with a TV show being dumb. There are actually a lot of dumb shows for smart people. It’s just that everyone who wears smarty pants is worried about looking stupid for watching something that’s not aimed directly at the wine and cheese crowd. These secretly smart TV shows manage to take low-brow comedy and add in high art. 

Sometimes, stupid TV with smart jokes is exactly what you want to watch after a long day at work. A 30 minute sitcom that’s layered with dense jokes needs a writer's room full of egg heads. Dumb TV shows for smart people are written by people who are on the search for the perfect dumb joke, and that takes an entire head full of brains.

Some of the stupid shows smart people enjoy have such an idiotic premise that it’s hard to imagine that anyone intelligent would enjoy them. Something like Arrested Development, a show that at its core is about rich people arguing over a property company, sounds no different than a series like Dallas or Dynasty. However, the show’s substantial amount of witty jokes makes it one of the best dumb TV series with smart humor out there. 

Vote up your favorite smart TV shows that seem stupid below and add anything you feel is missing. 

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26
Saturday Night Live is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Darrell Hammond, Kenan Thompson, Seth Meyers

Season 44 - Rotten Tomatoes Score- 70%

Saturday Night Live is an American late-night live television sketch comedy and variety show created by Lorne Michaels and developed by Dick Ebersol. The show premiered on NBC on October 11, ...more
27
American Vandal is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Tyler Alvarez, Griffin Gluck, Jimmy Tatro

Season 2 - Rotten Tomatoes Score 98%

This series (Netflix, 2017) is a true satire mockumentary series. When senior class clown Dylan Maxwell (Jimmy Tatro) is accused and expelled from school, sophomore Peter Maldonado (Tyler ...more
28
Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Y... is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Elizabeth Banks, Michael Ian Black, Janeane Garofalo

Rotten Tomatoes Score - 75%

Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later is a 2017 Netflix comedy series directed by David Wain. Set in 1991 in both the camp and New York City, the show is a sequel to 2001 film Wet Hot ...more
29
Nathan For You is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
AnissaMae13 added Nathan Fielder, William Heath, Anthony Filosa

Rotten Tomatoes Series Average - 97%

Nathan for You (Comedy Central, 2013) is an American docu-reality comedy television series created by Nathan Fielder and Michael Koman. Business school graduate and consultant Nathan Fielder ...more
30
Jane the Virgin is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Gina Rodriguez, Andrea Navedo, Yael Grobglas

Rotten Tomatoes Series Average - 100%

Jane the Virgin (The CW, 2014) is an American satirical romantic comedy-drama telenovela developed by Jennie Snyder Urman. A working, religious young Latina virgin (Gina Rodriguez) becomes ...more
31
Mr. Show with Bob and David is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Bob Odenkirk, David Cross, John Ennis

Rotten Tomatoes Series Average - 100%

Mr. Show with Bob and David, also known as Mr. Show, is an American sketch comedy series starring and hosted by Bob Odenkirk and David Cross. It aired on HBO from November 3, 1995, to December ...more
32
Happy Endings is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Eliza Coupe, Elisha Cuthbert, Zachary Knighton

Rotten Tomatoes Series Average - 78%

Happy Endings is an American sitcom television series that ran on ABC from April 13, 2011 to May 3, 2013. The single-camera ensemble comedy originally aired as a mid-season replacement with a ...more
33
Sick Note is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Luke Albright added Rupert Grint, Nick Frost, Don Johnson

Season 1 - Rotten Tomatoes Score 50%

Sick Note (2017, Sky One) is a British black comedy TV series. After slacker Daniel Glass (Rupert Grint) is misdiagnosed with cancer, his lies lead him into an absurd web of fraud, blackmail, ...more
34
Baskets is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Zach Galifianakis, Martha Kelly, Louie Anderson

Rotten Tomatoes Series Average - 92%

Baskets (FX, 2016) is an American comedy television series co-created by Louis C.K., Zach Galifianakis and Jonathan Krisel, who is also the showrunner. Galifianakis stars in the dual lead role ...more
35
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Rachel Bloom, Vincent Rodriguez III, Santino Fontana

Rotten Tomatoes Series Average - 98%

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (The CW, 2015) is an American romantic musical comedy-drama television series created by Rachel Bloom and Aline Brosh McKenna. After bumping into her first love, a New York ...more
36
Comedy Bang! Bang! is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Scott Aukerman, Reggie Watts, Scott Mescudi

Rotten Tomatoes Score - N/A

Comedy Bang! Bang! is a television series created and hosted by Scott Aukerman, featuring his co-host/bandleader Reggie Watts. The show airs weekly on IFC and is a spin-off of his successful ...more
37
Florida Girls is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Laura Chinn, Patty Guggenheim, Melanie Field

Season 1 - Rotten Tomatoes Score 85%

Florida Girls (Pop, 2019) is an American comedy television series. Four girls living in Small Town, Florida re-examine their lives after their only ambitious friend moves away to follow her
38
Man Seeking Woman is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Jay Baruchel, Eric André, Britt Lower

Rotten Tomatoes Series Average - 93%

39
Garth Marenghi's Darkplace is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Richard Ayoade, Matt Berry, Matthew Holness

Rotten Tomatoes Series Average - 85%

Garth Marenghi's Darkplace is a British horror parody television series created for Channel 4 by Richard Ayoade and Matthew Holness. The show focuses on fictional horror author Garth Marenghi ...more
40
Girlboss is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Britt Robertson, Ellie Reed, Johnny Simmons

Rotten Tomatoes Series Average - 36%

Girlboss is an American comedy web television series created by Kay Cannon. Sophia, a misfit, discovers a passion for fashion, becoming an unlikely businesswoman in the process. As her business ...more
41
Sherman's Showcase is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Bashir Salahuddin

Season 1 - Rotten Tomatoes Score 100%

Sherman's Showcase (IFC, 2019) is an American comedy television series, created by Bashir Salahuddin and Diallo Riddle. Inspired by variety shows including Soul Train, American Bandstand, The ...more
42
Stella is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Karen Paullada, Ruth Jones, Justin Davies

Rotten Tomatoes Score - N/A

Stella was a short-lived television series that originally ran from June 28, 2005 to August 30, 2005 on the American television channel Comedy Central, created by and starring Michael Ian Black, ...more
43
Review is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list Really Stupid Shows That Are Actually For Smart People
Andrew Daly, Megan Stevenson, Jessica St. Clair

Rotten Tomatoes Series Average - 95%

Review is an American mockumentary comedy series starring Andy Daly as professional critic Forrest MacNeil, who provides reviews of real-life experiences. The series was created by Daly, and is ...more