Film and TV

10 Best NBC Sitcoms of the 1980s

There was a certain vibe that reverberated through the comedies of the 1980s. The gritty, biting comedic satire that defined the '70s was out (for the most part) and wholesome ensemble comedies were in. Sitcoms had a certain lightness to them. Even the darker moments were couched in a kind of ABC Afterschool Special lesson. The laughs and the tears were tempered with a can-do attitude and dressed in shoulder pads and, occasionally, dayglo.

NBC began its reign as the undisputed king of primetime comedy during this decade with list of long-running shows and name stars that made other networks jealous. They spawned the careers of quite a few budding actors and breathed new life into a others. From muppet-like aliens to old friends in the twilight of their lives, NBC seemed to hold every demographic and this is a list of the best of what they had to offer.

Note that to qualify for the list, shows had to have spent the bulk of their lifespan in the decade of the '80s, which disqualifies sitcoms like Saved by the Bell and Seinfeld, both of which feel much more like '90s shows anyway.

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Jeff Balke is a writer, editor, photographer, tech expert and native Houstonian. He has written for a wide range of publications and co-authored the official 50th anniversary book for the Houston Rockets.
Contact: Jeff Balke