@Adam Williamson, 20th November 2009 07:02 GMT
Point well taken.
Along with Monty Python, Fawlty Towers and Red Dwarf, we've also gotten something called "Are You Being Served", which is more along the lines of a traditional sitcom, though it still has a lot of the kinds of situations you'd never see attempted in American sitcoms (ironically, one of my favorite Monty Python sketches is a parody of American sitcoms circa late '60s/early '70s, the infamous "Attila The Hun Show").
We also get Benny Hill over here of course, which is pretty much the antithesis of Python, but which I found myself enjoying very much in spite of myself.
Comedy Central carried The League of Gentlemen for a bit back in the late '90s; I thought they were absolutely pants-pissing funny, and thought for sure they'd be the next Python -- and then they were gone. Damn, were they good. Having had to go on unemployment for a while about ten years or so ago, I totally dug their "Job Centre" sketch.
We're also getting Top Gear over here now, thanks to the BBC America channel on our satellite, but I'm not sure if that really counts as comedy.
I know a lot of you guys rag on Rick Gervaise over there, but I thought the British version of The Office was absolutely frickin' brilliant. Gervaise as the Boss was devestating; he reminded me of the Boss in the BOFH stories. The American version is feeble by comparison; it just doesn't have the same edge to it. (This is why I can't see why people over here think Norman Lear is so great; everything of his that got any notice was stolen from the British and watered down)
That said, I don't doubt there's a lot of crap on TV over there; I've often heard British Reg readers mentioning a woman named Catherine Tate in terms of disparagement, often in the same breath with the catch phrase, "Am I Bovvered?"
Pint of lager icon, because -- if I'm counting forward from Eastern Standard correctly -- it's getting to be lunchtime in London right about now.