Skip to main content

11 Hilarious TV Shows Like Friends

Rahul is a TV addict who can never get enough of good shows. His all-time favorites are The Wire, Breaking Bad, and The Sopranos.

tv-shows-like-friends

Other TV Shows like Friends

For 10 years, we laughed, cried, and celebrated Thanksgiving with them. All the 6 twenty-somethings – Monica, Chandler, Ross, Rachel, Joey, and Pheobe – were not only amazing friends with each other, but they were also our friends.

It’s been more than 12 years since we saw them grabbing coffee together but we still miss them. There were rumors about a Friends reunion on TV, but it seems as if no one is eager for it except the fans. With that out of question, let’s take a look at some TV series like Friends to keep you occupied for a while.

tv-shows-like-friends

1. Joey

Starring

  • Matt LeBlanc
  • Andrea Anders
  • Paulo Costanzo
  • Jennifer Coolidge
  • Drea de Matteo
  • Miguel A. Núñez Jr.

Joey is the continuation of Joey Tribuanni’s story from Friends. When all of Joey’s friends settle down, he moves to Los Angeles to pursue his acting career.

Joey isn't the sharpest, but he knows his game when it comes to ladies. He continues to woo ladies while struggling to make something out of his shaky acting career.

It’s a shame that they had to cancel it only after two short seasons. I think people didn’t like the idea with Joey without the rest of his friends. Nonetheless, you still have two awesome seasons to binge-watch!

tv-shows-like-friends

2. How I Met Your Mother

Starring

  • Josh Radnor
  • Jason Segel
  • Cobie Smulders
  • Neil Patrick Harris
  • Alyson Hannigan
  • Cristin Milioti

How I Met Your Mother is the story of Ted (the father) and his friends’ adventures leading up to meeting Ted’s life partner. Fast forward a few years, Ted tells the same story to his kids – the journey leading to meeting their mother.

It’s fair to say that How I Met Your Mother cashed in on Friends' popularity. It started airing just a couple of months after the last season of Friends gaining the latter’s audience in the process.

There is no denying, though, that How I met Your Mother remains one of the most memorable sitcoms I have ever watched. The ending might not be what a lot of people had hoped for, but you have to give credit to the whole team who made it happen and kept it original for ten years.

If you’re looking for something similar to Friends, this is the closest thing to it. Give it a shot.

tv-shows-like-friends

3. The Big Bang Theory

Starring

  • Johnny Galecki
  • Jim Parsons
  • Kaley Cuoco
  • Simon Helberg
  • Kunal Nayyar
  • Sara Gilbert
  • Mayim Bialik
  • Melissa Rauch
  • Kevin Sussman
  • Laura Spencer

The plot revolves around a few socially awkward scientists who know nothing about life outside the laboratory. When an attractive woman moves into an apartment nearby, she shows them how much they have been missing out on.

I think its jokes and scientific references are really witty. Some people might not even understand them. No, it doesn’t mean that you have to be a science buff to get all its jokes. An average beer-drinking joe or Netflix and chill guy would not be disappointed. There is something for everyone.

The chemistry between Jim Parsons and Johnny Galecki is definitely the one to keep an eye on. In addition to these two, other characters are super fun, too. Penny, for instance, brings her innocent humor to brighten up the show. Let’s not forget how awesome Kunal Nayyar and Wolowitz are in their supporting roles.

My only complaint is the stereotypical presentation of an Indian guy. Not everyone has a thickish accent like his. Being an Indian, it’s hilarious and, at the same time, uncomfortable to see him portrayed like this. Of course, I am biased!

But let’s not derail from the topic. Every show has its ups and downs. Despite its shortcomings, Big Bang Theory remains one of the best TV shows like Friends.

tv-shows-like-friends

4. Parks & Recreation

Starring

  • Amy Poehler
  • Rashida Jones
  • Paul Schneider
  • Aziz Ansari
  • Nick Offerman
  • Aubrey Plaza
  • Chris Pratt
  • Adam Scott
  • Rob Lowe
  • Jim O'Heir
  • Retta
  • Billy Eichner

The plot revolves around Leslie Knope, a struggling politician who deals with real problems daily. You, however, won’t be bored with all the politics at play. It’s presented in a humorous yet realistic way, which manages to shed some light on how everything really functions in a government’s office. I found the humor ridiculous at times, but it is still pretty believable.

If you were one of those people who watched the pilot and never returned to watch another episode of Parks and Recreation, I wouldn’t blame you. A lot of people never came back, even when the show turned into one of the best sitcoms ever.

Even though I was not fond of the first season, I’d recommend you to watch it all. Only then you’d be able to understand the depth of its characters.

tv-shows-like-friends

5. New Girl

Starring

  • Zooey Deschanel
  • Jake Johnson
  • Max Greenfield
  • Damon Wayans Jr.
  • Hannah Simone
  • Lamorne Morris

New Girl is a sitcom about a young woman who moves into an apartment with three single men right after a breakup. Although she is pretty different from any other girl, they try their best to support her through her rough patch.

With no laugh tracks and cheap punchlines, New Girl is like a breath of fresh air. The same old formula that sitcoms have been using to make you laugh has not been used here. It feels refreshing.

While shows like Friends take some time to get into the groove, New Girl is pretty likable from the outset. You’d loved every moment of it from the pilot.

Ignore the negativity around this show. Many people have been rating it pretty low because they expected it to be something more serious than it turned out to be. It can be silly and nonsensical sometimes. At the same time, though, it’s tons of fun.

tv-shows-like-friends

6. Community

Starring

  • Joel McHale
  • Gillian Jacobs
  • Danny Pudi
  • Yvette Nicole Brown
  • Alison Brie
  • Donald Glover
  • Ken Jeong
  • Chevy Chase
  • Jim Rash

I am very critical when it comes to rip-offs of other entertainment mediums. Family Guy, for instance, is pretty much a rip-off of The Simpsons. That’s why that show isn’t even on this list despite being popular.

On the other hand, Community is one of the most original TV shows I have watched in quite some time. You won’t need laugh tracks to convince you that a punchline or a scenario is funny. You’ll laugh, a lot.

While every character is lovable, Abed is the best. He gets the best lines, just like Chandler Bing from Friends. His timing with jokes is pretty dead-on. I often had to rewind or pause to absorb everything and get the hang of it.

tv-shows-like-friends

7. Seinfeld

Starring

  • Jerry Seinfeld
  • Julia Louis-Dreyfus
  • Michael Richards
  • Jason Alexander

Seinfeld is a sitcom that ran on NBC for nine seasons. The plot revolves around the adventures of a stand-up New York comedian and his friends.

For a show that described itself as “a show about nothing,’’ it changed the way we look at sitcoms.

Unlike Friends, though, its relationships never stuck. The main characters were on and off all the time. And this is what made it intriguing to watch.

Surely, there won’t be a show like this for years to come. Even if you’re not a big fan of sitcoms, you will find meaning and depth in this series. If I had to sum up Seinfeld in one word, I’d say it’s ‘irreplaceable.’

It’s been almost 20 years since the last episode aired on TV, but somehow, it has stood the test of time. If you’re looking for a great TV show like Friends, Seinfeld should be right up your alley.

tv-shows-like-friends

8. That '70s Show

Starring

  • Topher Grace
  • Mila Kunis
  • Ashton Kutcher
  • Danny Masterson
  • Laura Prepon
  • Wilmer Valderrama
  • Debra Jo Rupp
  • Kurtwood Smith
  • Tanya Roberts
  • Don Stark
  • Lisa Robin Kelly
  • Tommy Chong
  • Josh Meyers

The '70s Show is about a group of teenage friends and their misadventures in Wisconsin. Although it premiered in the '90s, it is set 20 years before its time. And after watching a couple of seasons, I can confidently say that they have done an outstanding job keeping the jokes and script original.

Unlike Friends, where only Chandler changed over the course of ten years, you’ll see everyone develop and get mature in their own way. I think That '70s Show doesn’t get the credit it deserves. In fact, it’s so much better than shows like Friends and Big Bang Theory in some regards.

One of the lesser-known facts – none of the actors had any acting gigs before signing up for their roles in this TV show. It’s fascinating to see them pull off their roles in such an emphatic fashion.

The writing is very well done. Though it’s simple, there is a sense of unpredictability. Each episode has its own scenarios to make you chuckle. No nonsense – just pure comedy.

tv-shows-like-friends

9. Cougar Town

Starring

  • Courteney Cox
  • Christa Miller
  • Busy Philipps
  • Dan Byrd
  • Josh Hopkins
  • Ian Gomez
  • Brian Van Holt
  • Bob Clendenin

When a recently divorced woman decides to bring some unpredictability and fun in her life by dating younger guys, things don’t quite go according to plan.

Cougar Town is not exactly the type of show everyone will love. If you loved Monica from the TV show Friends, though, you’d want to see this. Courtney Cox has done a fantastic job playing a 40 something mom who only wants to date younger guys. It’s so fun to see her trying to stop her life from sparring out of control.

The self-awareness of this show is just mind-blowing. Just when you think you’re getting tired of watching Jules’ drinking habits getting worse, there is an episode where she tries to quit for good. It knows how to poke fun at itself, keeping everything fresh and exciting.

Although the show is directed at 30+ audiences, you’d enjoy it even if you don’t fall into that age group.

tv-shows-like-friends

10. Curb Your Enthusiasm

Starring

  • Larry David
  • Jeff Garlin
  • Cheryl Hines
  • Susie Essman
  • J. B. Smoove

What started off as a spin-off of Seinfeld turned into so much more over a few years. Don’t make the mistake of dismissing it as a mere spin-off, though. It’s so much more than the continuation of Larry David’s story as a New York stand-up comedian. We follow him through all the awkward and mushy moments with his friends, wife, and manager.

The self-deprecating humor might not be for everyone. However, those who love shows like Friends and Seinfeld will love every moment of it. In the age when cliché comedies are popping left and right, Curb Your Enthusiasm is a rare gem you should not miss out on.

tv-shows-like-friends

11. Black Books

Starring

  • Dylan Moran
  • Bill Bailey
  • Tamsin Greig

Bernard Black owns a bookshop, but he doesn’t like books or his customers, leading to many awkward and hilarious moments. Things spiral out of control when he employs Manny, a stress victim, to help him run the shop.

Some of its jokes will go over your head if you aren't paying attention. You wouldn’t even notice them. And this is what I love about Black Books is the sheer amount of subtle references and puns. Without any laughter tracks, you have to notice the funny moments yourself.

Honorable Mentions

Once you watch the shows above, I highly recommend some others!

Honorable Mentions

  • The IT Crowd
  • It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia
  • Spaced
  • Father Ted
  • Two And A Half Men
  • Full House
  • Modern Family

Did I miss out on any good TV shows like Friends? Let me know in the comments section.

Comments

Kelly Ann Christensen from Overland Park, Johnson County, Kansas on February 01, 2020:

Every time there is a successful show it seems like they try to duplicate it 15 times. lol I enjoyed Friends while it was running years ago. I enjoyed your article.

Rachel M Johnson on August 03, 2018:

Parks and Recreation and That 70’s Show are the best ones on the list!

DREAM ON on March 15, 2018:

You brought back a lot of memories. So much fun to watch. Have a fantastic night.

Dominique on January 17, 2017:

I think you forgot Scrubs! ;) good suggestions though!

Cindy from United States on May 13, 2016:

Good suggestions.