That 70′s Show (Comically Serious) — Arguably the funniest character on That 70′s Show was Red Forman, and most of his humor resided in the comically serious trope. Likewise, most of the humor on Downton (about 70 percent) resides in Carson, the butler, who is hilariously over-serious and absurdly anal, as in: If you wear black tie (which is semi-formal) to a white-tie event, you may as well live in the ghetto, according to Carson. He is a bitchy man, but he is one of the funniest characters on television, although I still don’t know if it’s intentional or not.
Girls — Do you enjoy hate-watching shows about spoiled, entitled layabouts who expect everything to be handed to them, but are not willing to put in any actual effort into finding success? Meet the Crowley daughters, the 1920′s version of HBO’s Girls.
Happy Endings — Like Max on Happy Endings, Downton’s Thomas is very much fits the straight-gay trope. Also, the self-hating gay trope. And the devious homosexual trope.
30 Rock — Like Dr. Spaceman from 30 Rock, the medical doctor on Downton Abbey has about as much legitimate medical knowledge. Of course, that’s owed to the times in Downton and the hilariously willful stupidity of Dr. Spaceman in 30 Rock, but both characters seem to inexplicably fail upwards (Dr. Spaceman to Surgeon General; Dr. Richard Clarkson to a Major in the military).