Ross lost Rachel hundreds of times. Rosa from Brooklyn 99 struggled with accepting her sexuality. In Modern family, Manny's father consistently abandons his responsibilities as a father. They all went through financial difficulties, varying levels of homelessness, estranged family and so much more. If those aren't real struggles, then what are?
Did you want them to show Joey trying to get an eyelash out of his eye or something? Do their struggles really need to get that realistic for you to appreciate them?
If you ask me, what most people find unrealistic is the fact that they always seem to make it out in the end. Complicated problems have simple solutions. No one is ever left bitter or resentful; at least, not for too long.
What is so unrealistic about getting yourself into a pile of shit, and then being saved by your friends/family/mysterious turn of events that work out in your favour. Okay fine- maybe we won't always be able to save ourselves in 20 minutes, but so what?
In a world when problems seem never ending, and stress seems to last forever and a day, what's so wrong with thinking that we just haven't reached the end of the episode?
What's so wrong with having hope and believing that at the end of the day, things get better...
Now, getting to the whole, “I don't like laugh tracks because I don't want to be told when to laugh” argument. I'll simply say this. If you're sitting in a concert and you hear applause, do you feel like you're being forced to clap? When you watch a sad movie and you hear the melancholy classical piano score in the background, do you get angry because you feel like you're being forced to start crying and stumble into a manic depression? I really hope the answer to that question is no.
The laugh track is literally just there to mimic the live experience. They aren't trying to put in the world of the characters themselves. They are trying to give you the experience of being an audience member watching a live comedy show; because let’s be honest, watching a live comedy show where nobody ever laughs is just plain awkward.
To conclude, if your argument against sitcoms is naming one bad one and using it as a reason to justify why the entire genre is terrible, I could compare that to eating a bad sandwich and then deciding that I hate all food. Or even reading a somewhat boring news article, and then deciding that I hate all forms of literature. It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense!
There are unique, admittedly terrible, sitcoms out there- but those are simply outliers. Give other sitcoms a chance! If your reasoning is based on the fact that you detest optimism, hope, and happiness, click here to return to the top of this article.
Written by Krish Mayani