The 25 Worst Sitcoms Ever

TV has its hits and misses, right? For every great sitcom, there’s a pile of crappy ones. Some get cancelled right out of the gate — others drag on for years, begging to be put out of their misery.

Join us in this look back at the 25 worst sitcoms.

25. Veronica’s Closet (1997 –2000)


Kirstie Alley – Veronica Chase
Dan Cortese – Perry Rollins
Wallace Langham – Josh Blair
Daryl Mitchell – Leo Michaels
Kathy Najimy – Olive Massery

Veronica (Kirstie Alley) is a romance expert, but not when it comes to her own life. A divorced woman, she owns a lingerie company called Veronica’s Closet and interacts with co-workers Olive (Kathy Najimy), Josh (Wallace Langham), Leo (Daryl Mitchell) and Perry (Dan Cortese).

Why it’s on the list
Some argue that the first season of Veronica’s Closet was funny, but the addition of Ron Silver in the second season was the kiss of death. Not sure we agree though – we wanted to like Veronica’s Closet after Kirstie Alley’s run on Cheers, but the only thing this had going for it was supporting players Wallace Langham and Kathy Najimy.

24. Charles in Charge (1984- 1990)


Scott Baio – Charles
Willie Aames – Buddy Lembeck
James T. Callahan – Walter Powell
Nicole Eggert – Jamie Powell
Josie Davis – Sarah Powell
Alexander Polinsky – Adam Powell

Charles is more than babysitter to the Powell kids – he’s a friend! Charles in Charge focused on the college student’s interaction with the Powell family and how he managed his own social life. And don’t forget kooky sidekick Buddy Lembeck, played by Willie Aames.

Why it’s on the list
Hear us out on this. Yep, Charles in Charge had Scott Baio and Willie Aames at their finest – only their finest wasn’t especially good. It does have that kickin’ theme song. Charles in Charge is definitely a show that you love to hate (or is it hate to love?).

23. The Nanny (1993 – 1999)


Fran Drescher – Fran Fine
Charles Shaughnessy – Maxwell Sheffield
Daniel Davis – Niles
Lauren Lane – Chastity Claire “C.C.” Babcock
Nicholle Tom – Margaret “Maggie” Sheffield
Benjamin Salisbury – Brighton Sheffield
Madeline Zima – Grace Sheffield

Flushing, New York cosmetics saleslady with nasal and whiny voice is mistaken for a nanny applicant for rich Manhattan widow Maxwell Sheffield – and she’s hired. Yet another sitcom (see Mr. Belvedere, Charles in Charge) of the hired help becoming part of the family dynamic. The twist here is the sexual tension between the nanny and the dad.

Why it’s on the list
Fran Drescher’s trademark laugh was a real comedy killer. How many times can you listen to that laugh without wanting to jab a sharp object into your ear?

22. Webster (1983 – 1989)


Emmanuel Lewis – Webster Long
Alex Karras – George Papadapolis
Susan Clark – Katherine Calder-Young Papadapolis

A post-retirement football player and his wife have their lives shaken up when they take in the orphaned son of a former teammate. Capitalizing on the cute factor, Emmanuel Lewis was the answer to Diff’rent Strokes’ Gary Coleman.

Why it’s on the list
Cuteness aside, there were few laughs in this 80s staple. Former football player Alex Karras and his real life wife, Susan Clark, as fictional spouses George and Katherine Calder-Young Papadapolis didn’t deliver. Funniest thing about Webster? Papadapolis.

21. All-American Girl (1994 – 1995)


Margaret Cho – Margaret Kim
Amy Hill – Yung-hee ‘Grandma’ Kim
J.B. Quon – Eric Kim
Jodi Long – Katherine Kim
Clyde Kusatsu – Benny Kim

All-American Girl was based on Margaret Cho’s stand-up routine and looked at the culture clash between an Americanized daughter and her very traditional Korean mother and father.

Why it’s on the list
Perhaps attempting to capitalize on the success of comedian-turned-sitcom-star Jerry Seinfeld, Margaret Cho took on her sitcom with tons of enthusiasm. The Asian-American storylines, however, just never grabbed audiences and the show ended up in the crapper.

20. Babes (1990 – 1991)


Wendie Jo Sperber – Charlene Gilbert
Susan Peretz – Darlene Gilbert
Lesley Boone – Marlene Gilbert

Babes revolved around three overweight sisters, — who all lived together in a tiny New York City apartment — and their relationships and careers. The show came under some criticism for its “fat” jokes.

Why it’s on the list
The situations of three chubby chicks just didn’t work with the viewing public and the series got canned after its first season.

19. Mr. Belvedere (1985 – 1990)


Christopher Hewett – Mr. Lynn Aloysius Belvedere
Ilene Graff – Marsha Cameron Owens
Rob Stone – Kevin Owens
Tracy Wells – Heather Owens
Brice Beckham – Wesley T. Owens
Bob Uecker – George Owens

Oh the hilarity of a British male live-in housekeeper/nanny serving an American family, right? Mr. Belvedere, the hired help, really became a part of their lives (not unlike Alice on the Brady Bunch) – there to handle the highs and lows of the Owens family.

Why it’s on the list
Dad was played by Bob Uecker. That should have been enough of a turn-off right there, plus British Belvedere’s moral and life lessons got old fast.

18. Family Matters (1989 – 1998)


Reginald VelJohnson – Carl Otis Winslow
JoMarie Payton – Harriette Winslow
Kellie Shanygne Williams – Laura Lee Winslow
Darius McCrary – Edward “Eddie” James Arthur Winslow
Jaleel White – Steven “Steve” Quincy Urkel
Telma Hopkins – Rachel Crawford
Rosetta LeNoire – Estelle “Mother” Winslow

Family Matters is actually a spin-off of Perfect Strangers, which isn’t a good thing, considering Strangers made our list of worst sitcoms too. While the show is about the Winslow family, it’s really nerdy next door neighbor Stephen Urkel that steals the show. And Urkel wasn’t even part of the original cast!

Why it’s on the list
How did Urkel and the Winslow clan survive so long on television? With a patented catchphrase, the nerdy disguise (Glasses? Check. High water pants? Check. Suspenders? Check.) and the out-there voice, Urkel’s shtick wore out fast. Or did it? 10 years is a long run.

17. The Ropers (1979 – 1980)


Norman Fell – Stanley Roper
Audra Lindley – Helen Roper
Jeffrey Tambor – Jeffrey P. Brookes III
Patty McCormack – Anne Brookes
Evan Cohen – David Brookes

Three’s Company landlords Stanley and Helen Roper leave the apartment complex and move into a new one. Still the same Roper dynamic, but without the Three’s Company gang.

Why it’s on the list
The Ropers on Three’s Company? Hilarious. However, the characters were too much to handle on a weekly sitcom since viewers were used to seeing the pair in small doses. The spin-off was the answer to “What happened to the Ropers after they left the Three’s Company gang?” Turned out, their lives weren’t interesting (or funny) enough to follow.

16. Life on a Stick


Zachary Knighton – Laz Lackerson
Charlie Finn – Fred
Rachelle Lefevre – Lily
Saige Thompson -Molly Callahan
Amy Yasbeck – Michelle Lackerson

Again with the slackers, Life on a Stick followed Laz Lackerson and his friend Fred — and their adventures working at the local mall’s food court. Mean manager, cute co-worker and dysfunctional family are all part of the formula.

Why it’s on the list
Stick a fork in it, because Life on a Stick only survived one season. With good reason – few wanted to watch the goings on at the food court and the characters and comedy were light on laughs.

15. It’s a Living (1980 – 1982 ABC; 1985- 1989 syndication)


It’s a Living had an ever changing cast during its six season run, but most notably featured:
Ann Jillian – Cassie Cranston
Gail Edwards – Dot Higgins
Marion Mercer – Nancy Beebe
Crystal Bernard – Amy Tompkins
Barrie Youngfellow – Jan Joffmeyer
Sheryl Lee Ralph – Ginger St. James
Paul Kreppel – Sonny Mann

Do you remember this one? Yeah, we don’t blame you if you missed it. Waitresses gettin’ by while working at a restaurant atop a hotel. Hmm.. yeah.

Why it’s on the list
This one was just bad on so many levels. Sorry Crystal Bernard and Ann Jillian fans, but It’s a Living was a total flop, with jokes that never got off the ground. Amazing this one lasted so long.

14. Shasta McNasty (1999 – 2000)


Carmine Giovinazzo – Scott
Jake Busey – Dennis
Dale Godboldo – Randy

Shasta McNasty follows three slackers — Scott, Dennis and Randy – and their band Shasta. The plot relies heavily on the threesome’s lack of doing any real work and instead hanging out and, well… slacking.

Why it’s on the list
By name alone, this ill-fated sitcom was going nowhere – and fast. Do you know anyone who tuned in to watch this crappy mccrapster show?

13. George (1993)


LaCrystal Cooke – Vanessa
George Foreman – George Foster
Pablo Irlando – Mauricio Butler
Tony T. Johnson – ‘Bubba’ Foster
Sheryl Lee Ralph – Maggie Foster

Digging up plot details for “George” proved to be quite an ordeal. It seems to have disappeared from most people’s memories altogether. Best we can recall, it was about an ex-boxer (not much of a stretch) who works with troubled kids.

Why it’s on the list
George Foreman – great boxer. George Foreman – makes a good grill. George Foreman – not an actor. This show fell short in so many areas, but trying to carry Foreman’s athletic and grilling success to a sitcom didn’t fly.

12. Harry and the Hendersons (1991 – 1993)


Bruce Dickenson – George Henderson
Molly Cheek – Nancy Henderson
Carol-Ann Plante – Sara Henderson
Zachary Bostrom – Ernie Henderson
Kevin Peter Hall – Harry (first season only)
Dawan Scott – Harry (second season only)
Brian Metal – Harry (third season only)
Noah Blake – Brett Douglas

Hilarity ensues when the Hendersons find Bigfoot during a camping trip and bring him home to live with them. It’s based on the movie of the same name.

Why it’s on the list
What’s wrong with this formula? Take a shitty movie and make it into a shitty TV show. Hope people will watch. Not happening. Harry and the Hendersons was a train wreck on both the big and small screens. How the hell did this show last three seasons?

11. We’ve Got it Made (1983 – 1984 NBC; 1987- 1988 Syndication)


Teri Copley – Mickey McKenzie
Tom Villard – Jay Bostwick
Matt McCoy – David Tucker (1983 – 1984)
John Hillner – David Tucker (1987-1988)

Two odd-couple roommates in Manhattan hire a live-in maid, played by Teri Copley. The first year of the show, both guys had girlfriends, but later the show was revamped with the boys as bachelors and We’ve Got it Maid took on that Three’s Company vibe.

Why it’s on the list
A hot housekeeper and two lame bachelors didn’t equate to the comedy bar set by Three’s Company. The eye candy of Teri Copley kept viewers around for awhile, but the show had zero substance to keep it going.

10. Double Trouble (1984 – 1985)


Jean Sagal – Kate Foster
Liz Sagal- Allison Foster

Twin sisters Kate and Allison Foster (Liz and Jean Segal) are as different as night and day. Kate is the fun one and Allison is serious.

Why it’s on the list
Here’s 80’s schlock at it’s finest. Uh-oh – cute twins pulling the old Parent Trap/Patty Duke switcheroo. There’s only so much switching that can go on before the premise gets old… and this one ran out of steam quickly.

9. Perfect Strangers (1986 – 1993)


Bronson Pinchot – Balki Bartokomous
Mark Linn-Baker – Larry Appleton
Melanie Wilson – Jennifer
Rebeca Arthur – Mary Anne
Belita Moreno – Lydia

What happens when Balki Bartokomous, a sheepherder from small Mediterranean island Mypos, moves in with his American cousin? Their differences are the core of the comedy as they share an apartment.

Why it’s on the list
Perfect Strangers really went as far as it could with the weekly buddy comedy formula. While Perfect Strangers was less than perfect, Balki’s accent sure could be funny — “Don’t be ridickulas.”

8. My Two Dads (1987 -1990)


Greg Evigan – Joey Harris
Paul Reiser – Michael Taylor
Staci Keanan – Nicole Bradford
Chad Allen – Zach Nichols
Florence Stanley – Judge Margaret W. Wilbur
Giovanni Ribisi – Cory Kupkus

Teenage girl Nicole (Staci Keanan) is left in the custody of two men after her mother passes away. Her mom never knew which was the father, as both were her former boyfriends. They raise Nicole together – Odd Couple-style, with Joey (Greg Evigan) the artist and Michael (Paul Reiser) the clean-cut guy.

Why it’s on the list
The Greg Evigan and Paul Reiser pairing never really took off and the concept that two men who each slept with the same woman could raise a child without ever knowing who was the father seemed far-fetched. Plus this was apparently a world that had never heard of paternity tests.

7. Baby Bob (2002 – 2003)


Joely Fisher – Lizzy Collins Spencer
Adam Arkin – Walter Spencer
Holland Taylor – Madeline Collins
Elliot Gould – Sam Spencer
Ken Hudson Campbell – voice of Baby Bob

A baby that talks (with a little CGI magic!) is kept under wrap by his parents, but used to their advantage when Baby Bob plays spy and reports back to them. Baby Bob was actually the spokesbaby for 1997 ads and later, became the focal point of a Quizno’s campaign.

Why it’s on the list
The talking baby thing died out with Look Who’s Talking Too – and even that was a stretch.

6. Mama’s Family (1983 – 1984 NBC; 1986 – 1990 syndication)


Vicki Lawrence – Thelma ‘Mama’ Crowley Harper
Ken Berry – Vinton Harper
Dorothy Lyman- Naomi Oates Harper
Eric Brown – Vinton ‘Buzz’ Harper, Jr.
Karin Argoud – Sonja Harper
Rue McClanahan – Aunt Fran Crowley
Carol Burnett – Eunice Harper Higgins
Harvey Korman – Ed Higgins

A spin-off of characters from a Carol Burnett Show sketch, Mama’s Family featured the southern Harper family… and their daily dysfunction. Main characters included Vicki Lawrence as Thelma “Mama” Harper and her recently divorced son Vinton (Ken Berry) and his teenage kids who live with Mama. Dorothy Lyman played Vinton’s new wife, Naomi. Eunice, played by Carol Burnett, was on the first season of the show.

Why it’s on the list
Just because Carol Burnett’s show was great, doesn’t mean the spin-off could reach the same level. The characters were over-the-top (and not in a good way) – and you can only handle so much blue-haired bitter old lady. Mama’s Family was originally cancelled by NBC, but somehow managed to get a syndication deal and live on for four additional seasons.

5. Cavemen (2007 – 2008)


Bill English – Joel
Nick Kroll – Nick
Sam Huntington – Andy
Kaitlin Doubleday – Kate

This failure of a sitcom followed cavemen Joel, Nick and Andy in their experiences with modern day life and how they fit in as Neanderthals. Uh-huh. Is it any wonder Cavemen only lasted eight episodes?

Why it’s on the list
This one’s still pretty fresh in our memories as one of the worst sitcom offenders. The wounds are still healing from the concept of making a sitcom out of a popular Geico insurance ad campaign. Note to networks: basing an entire sitcom on a popular ad campaign does not a successful sitcom make.

4. Woops! (1992)


Fred Applegate – Jack Connors
Lane Davies – Curtis Thorpe
Cleavant Derricks – Dr. Frederick Ross
Meagen Fay – Alice McConnell
Marita Geraghty – Suzanne Skillman
Evan Handler – Mark Braddock
David Lascher – Kiefer

Kids accidentally set off a nuclear missile and the Russians counterattack… result? The world population is destroyed – except for six people left to live on a farm: the narrator, an ex-school teacher, a feminist, a stock broker, a homeless person and a pathologist.

Why it’s on the list
Just like Babes, Woops! was one of the Fox networks early low budget attempts at humor. They couldn’t all be Married With Children I suppose.

3. Yes, Dear (2000 – 2006)


Anthony Clark – Gregory Thomas ‘Greg’ Warner
Jean Louisa Kelly – Kim Warner
Liza Snyder – Christine Hughes
Mike O’Malley – Jimmy Hughes

Two young couples have varying outlooks on parenting — Kim and her husband Greg are uptight, while Kim’s sister Christine and her husband Jimmy are laid back. And since Jimmy and Christine live in Kim and Greg’s guest house, hilarity is always close by.

Why it’s on the list
This series ran for six painful years, leaving many to wonder how shit like this could continue to exist on TV while other (better) series were cancelled. All the elements of a crappy sitcom – bad writing, bad acting – and no sign of funny anywhere.

2. Homeboys in Outer Space (1996-1997)


Flex Alexander – Tyberius Walker
Darryl M. Bell – Morris Clay
Rhona Bennett – Loquatia
Kevin Michael Richardson – Vashti
Paulette Braxton – Amma

This UPN sitcom featured button-down type Morris Clay (Darryl M. Bell) and fun-loving Tyberius Walker (Flex Alexander) flying about in a winged car starship called the Space Hoopty. The on-board computer, Loquatia, had a crush on Morris. The homeboys travel on adventures that include Ty’s brother-in-law Vashti and bounty hunter Amma.

Why it’s on the list
This is one of the more obscure entries on the worst sitcom list, so there’s an accomplishment! A weak plot coupled with poor writing… aw, who are we kidding? This failed by plot alone and was cancelled due to low ratings. Even the NAACP protested the concept.

1. Small Wonder


Dick Christie – Ted Lawson
Marla Pennington – Joan Lawson
Jerry Supiran – Jamie Lawson
Emily Schulman – Harriet Brindle
Tiffany Brissette – Vicki the Robot

Dad creates a robot, Vicki, but the family keeps it secret from the rest of the world (including nosy neighbors), pretending she is really part of the family.

Why it’s on the list
The only funny thing about Small Wonder is how bad the show was. Just goes to show that 1980s show standards were slightly lower than they are today. Really? A lame girl robot? And it ran for four seasons?

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