The League — Yes, it’s about fantasy football, but no, not really. It basically combines the sense of humor of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia with the structure of Curb Your Enthusiasm and boasts one of television’s funniest ensembles. Understanding or even caring about fantasy football is completely unnecessary, although a love of mail-order ties and three-penis wine is helpful.
Raising Hope — Yes, it’s on a network, and by rights, it shouldn’t have been overlooked, but it is by most people, notwithstanding the lead-in it gets from New Girl. It comes from the guy behind My Name Is Earl, but unlike Earl, Raising Hope hasn’t yet worn out its white-trash welcome. If you’re only familiar with Garrett Dillahunt from dramas like Deadwood, his brilliant comedic stylings may blow your mind, and he and Martha Plimpton make for the funniest husband and wife on television (after Brad and Jane in Happy Endings). Here’s some adorable, hilarious season one bloopers to whet your appetite.
Spaced — One of the 10 Geekiest Shows in the history of television, Spaced pairs the brilliant comedic duo, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz), and along with Jessica Hynes, they basically do a more straightforward version of what Dan Harmon did on Community: Riff on their pop-culture obsessions, from Pulp Fiction to Sixth Sense to countless comic book and video games. Also, I’m not saying that Dan Harmon took the idea for a paintball episode from Spaced, I’m just saying, the idea had been done before.
Bob’s Burgers — I don’t know if this is a safe space to admit it, but I don’t really like any of the other Fox animated sitcoms. Seth MacFarlane gives me hives (except for Ted, which I hated myself for loving), but Bob’s Burgers stands out from the Fox animated crowd in large part because of the brilliance of H. Jon Benjamin (also the voice of Archer, but you already knew that). Bob’s Burgers often pushes the boundaries of good taste, but it does so with less superficiality — curse word curse word retard curse word — than Seth MacFarlane, and without resorting to the standard MacFarlane formula.