The original cranky misanthropic bastard

Back in the late 90s and early 2000s, there was a criminally underrated sitcom called "Becker" starring Ted Danson as a grumpy, curmudgeonly, cheapskate GP working out of a run-down office in the Bronx. It focused on the many comic travails of his life, and his interactions with a blind black newsstand owner, a very attractive coffee shop owner (played by the inimitable Terry Farrell, who looked amazing back then and still looks pretty damn good today), and various others. Including Shawnee Smith, who starred in the "Saw" film series but never quite got to be as great as she was in this show.

(Farrell was replaced halfway through Season 4 by the almost-equally-hilarious Nancy Travis. She was good, but not quite as good.)

It was and remains one of the funniest shows ever to air on TV. And every grumpy introvert, ever, can relate to it. This was Gregory House, M.D., years before "House" was ever aired- less drama, less implausible medical conundrums, and less focus on human relationships, but much, much funnier in every way.

Here are a few of my favourite episodes- you can find most of them on YouTube now for free, thankfully:


  1. My old man and I give this post four enthusiastic thumbs up.

    I enjoyed the first three seasons of House on DVD, then I got bored quickly. It was actually my Old Man who pointed this show out to me. I enjoy it much more.

    Danson (and crew) didn't get enough notice for the show's tight delivery. Actual, good TV.

    1. It was a great show. They just don't make sitcoms like this one anymore. The scripts were great, the lines were hilarious, the characters were well-rounded... and then there's Terry Farrell. Every time I look at her, I feel like I'm looking at feminine perfection. And she was far more than just a (very) pretty face- she could do comic timing brilliantly.

    2. Terry Farrell: spectacular legs. Wow.

      Nancy Travis never gets the love she deserves. There's a time, not too long ago either, where I'd have put her on my Hall Pass list (right about "So I Married An Axe Murderer") next to Maura Tierney.

    3. Spectacular legs, breasts, hips, face, hair, voice, personality, comic timing... you name it, Terry Farrell has it. (Except maybe an ass. I will admit, she doesn't have much of an ass.)

      This is admittedly very subjective, but in my opinion she's one of the best-looking women I've ever seen, of any age. Right up there with Sophia Loren (back in the day) and Angelina Jolie.

      I'm actually a big fan of Nancy Travis. Her current work on "Last Man Standing" is fantastic. She plays the perfect foil to Tim Allen's manly-man Mike Baxter; she's neither liberal nor conservative, yet she's a loving wife and firm yet caring mother. That show is as good as it is because of her.

      And, for a 50-year-old, she's not bad-looking at all. Even with frizzy hair 15 years ago, she was still pretty damn cute.

    4. It was Becker that made realise what a good actor Ted Danson is.


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