Although the television commissioners were slow to recognize this, Science fiction and comedy actually work pretty well on the small screen. Here are ten of the best science fiction sitcoms.
No, it’s not the Ferengi bartender from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, but a long-forgotten oddity from 1978 that aired for one season on NBC before being canceled. The eponymous spaceman (Richard Benjamin) is an ambitious guy who dreams of a glamorous command of his own – and instead gets a galactic garbage truck. The premise sounds promising, and the show aimed, not entirely unsuccessfully, at satirizing the cinematic sci-fi boom ushered in by the success of war of starsbut it’s safe to say that Golden Globe winner Benjamin did a better job.
Despite a talented cast including five-time BAFTA nominee Miranda Hart, proven comedian Kevin Eldon and Shaun of the Dead Lead actor Nick Frost stars as a cocky spaceship captain. This BBC show about the misadventures of a crew of misfits featured plenty of goofy aliens, but lacked chemistry and laughs and was canceled after just two seasons. However, the central premise, which involves the crew trying (and largely failing) to lure galactic corporations to Britain, turns out to be very different post-Brexit.
8th. Spaceballs: The Animated Series
This animated TV version of the hit 1980s film aired for one season in 2008 and benefited from voice acting from Mel Brooks, Joan Rivers, Dee Bradley Baker and others. As with any parody anthology series, the show’s success depended largely on which show or film was airing, and the hit-or-miss affair only really succeeds when the source material is substantial enough to give the creators something to do to offer something they can work with.
This ambitious Australian-British sitcom follows boring, bored astronomer Paul (Rob Brydon) who gives up his job and his aimless relationship to take a job at an observatory in the sweltering Australian outback. The show had its moments – some of the comedic setups, such as a mysterious face in the sky that turned out to be a very prosaic explanation, paid off spectacularly – but the quirkiness of Paul’s newfound colleagues and friends was a little too forced, and the show was canceled in 2006 after two seasons.
6. Star Trek: Lower Decks
We all know what happens on the bridge of the spaceship Pursue – but what does the base do when the cameras aren’t running? Probably that Star Trek The franchise’s most successful foray into animation, Star Trek: Lower Decks has been bringing laughs since 2020 and shows no signs of stopping. Tawny Newsome and Jerry O’Connell star and provide the voices of Ensign Mariner and First Officer Ransom.
5. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
The first television adaptation of Douglas Adams’ hit radio series and novel of the same name aired in 1981. The strange mix of bizarre and sci-fi elements was difficult to pull off, but despite the sometimes boring special effects and slow pacing, there’s still a lot to like about the production. Look out for a barely recognizable Peter Davison to appear as the Fifth Doctor in BBC prime time on Saturday Doctor Who – make a guest appearance as dish of the day.
4. Avenue 5
This Armando Iannucci creation had everything going for it – two iron A-listers in Josh Gad and Hugh Laurie, big money from HBO and some pitch-black comedic situations – but first COVID and then critical apathy condemned it to cancellation Year 2021. However, a re-watch is extremely worthwhile; What will the off-course crew be like? Avenue 5 their eight-week supply is enough to last for years?
3. The Orville
It may have taken a while to get going, but Star Trek send up The Orville is top-notch sci-fi comedy, starring Seth Macfarlane as Captain Ed Mercer, whose drive to explore new worlds is often thwarted by circumstances, and Adrianne Palicki as Commander Grayson, who has cheated on Mercer with an alien, for plenty of laughs . Bridge talk has rarely been more unpleasant.
2. Rick and Morty
Everyone’s favorite time travel comedy follows the adventures of mad scientist Rick and his impressionable, annoying grandson Morty through time and space. The Emmy Award-winning series has grown from humble beginnings in 2013 into a nine-figure franchise and has been commissioned through its tenth season; The seventh season is currently streaming on Cartoon Network.
1. Red dwarf
When this BBC sitcom debuted, despite the doubts of the television commissioners Back in 1988, it was hard to believe that anyone would have believed it would still be going strong 35 years later, and it’s a testament to the chemistry between the lead actors that still endures in the production. Dave Lister (Craig Charles) is a dead-end bum on a mining ship who is placed in stasis for violating the ship’s regulations and wakes up three million years later to find the ship’s crew dead and the ship lost in space, with a Hologram of his dead superior (Chris Barrie), a creature spawned from his cat (Danny John-Jules), and a crazy android (Robert Llewellyn) for company. Expect submissions of every sci-fi movie and TV show imaginable, the odd existential crisis – and plenty of references to Smegheads.