A situation comedy. A television comedy program, lasting approximately 30 minutes, and focusing most commonly on some aspect of modern domestic life. A sitcom is rarely funny, but many of them make extensive use of a laugh track to encourage viewers to believe that it is humorous.

Former noder Zerotime points out another common theme of the traditional sitcom, which is the lack of consistent continuity. It doesn't matter how chaotic or earthshattering the events of each show are -- by the time the next week's episode airs, everything will be back to the status quo again. This has been parodied in the past -- in "South Park", for example, Kenny gets killed in every show, but the status quo keeps resurrecting him in time for the next program. Continuity often does move forward, slowly, on long-running programs. Some characters will die, or get married, or move away, but for the most part, the fact that things never seem to change in sitcoms keeps viewers seeking simple escapism from quitting the show.

A few good examples of sitcoms (and by "good examples", I mean programs that are actually funny and worth watching) include "I Love Lucy", "Futurama", "Seinfeld", "The Simpsons", "The Drew Carey Show", "M*A*S*H", "King of the Hill", "Malcolm in the Middle", "All in the Family", and "Community." ((cue laugh track)) ((cue family hug))
A Yuppie acronym. What TWINKs turn into when they have children and one of them stops working to stay home with the kids.

Single Income, Two Children, Oppressive Mortgage

The following is a list of sitcoms I watched in my younger days. Others are some of my current favorites. I can still sing every theme song word for word.

The dates listed are when the show was actually produced.

Alphabetized for your convenience

Looking back through this list, I am amazed by the amount of time I spent watching TV. My God. How did I have time to do anything else? And these were just the sitcoms! What about cartoons, commercials, etc.? Pathetic.

Sitcom is an utterly bizarre recent (1998) French movie, written and directed by François Ozon. It has been described to me as a movie conceived by a sanity-lacking Frenchman who took hallucinogens and started channeling Kafka. I highly recommend.

Plot summary: (spoiler!)

A quasi-happy rich family in suburban France: Disinterested Father, sweet worrywart Mother, shy studious Son, energetic lusty Daughter, newly hired Maid. Father buys rat as pet. Rat hypnotizes Son. Son becomes homosexual, Mother is distraught. Rat hypnotizes Maid's Husband, Maid's Husband becomes Son's lover. Rat hypnotizes Daughter, Daughter becomes suicidal. Daughter jumps out of window, is now paraplegic. Daughter's Lover can't please Daughter, he is seduced by Maid, discovered by Daughter, he is chased away.

Meanwhile, Son holds weekly orgies in his room. Mother is distraught. Mother is hypnotized by rat, seduces Son. Son remains homosexual. Son and Daughter take bath together, discuss sleeping with Mother, Daughter decides to seduce Father. She is unsuccessful.

Son, Daughter, and Mother go to group therapy. While they are gone, rat hypnotizes Father. Father dreams about killing family. Mother calls Father, tells him to get rid of the rat, as it is giving "bad vibes". Father microwaves rat, eats it. Family returns home to find Father morphed into giant rat. Rat attacks Mother and Son. Paraplegic Daughter slowly climbs stairs. Assisted by recent arrival of Daughter's Lover, Daughter kills rat.

Daughter gets back to gether with her Lover, Son is with Maid's Husband, Mother is with Maid. Father is dead, but that's okay. Rat, however, is still alive, lurking at the grave. . . .

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