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15 Gut-Busting Comedies Like The Conners You Need To Check Out Next

Despite its success on ABC, "The Conners" was never really supposed to happen. The TV show came out in 2018 as a spin-off to the long-running American sitcom "Roseanne," which was revived in 2018. However, the revival was short-lived, as star Roseanne Barr was fired just months after the premiere following a series of racist tweets. ABC canceled "Roseanne" almost immediately, and "The Conners" was conceived as the show's replacement — a spin-off of the original series with Roseanne written out, but still starring regulars John Goodman, Laurie Metcalf, Sara Gilbert, Lecy Goranson, and Michael Fishman in their original roles.

"The Conners" follows the same format and premise as "Roseanne," centering around a salt-of-the-earth working-class family struggling to make ends meet. The show quickly earned great reviews and became a staple of ABC's comedy catalog. The series is deeply human with great characters and whip-smart writing, but it's also gut-bustingly hilarious. So in case you've watched every episode and are aching for more knee-slapping comedy, we've got you covered. Here are some of the funniest shows that were inspired by, paved the way for, or are just as hilarious as "The Conners."

Last Man Standing

It's hard to think of a show that's more appropriate for a "Conners" enthusiast than "Last Man Standing." Created by Jack Burditt, the show ran for nine seasons from 2011 to 2021. "Last Man Standing" will absolutely hit home for "The Conners" viewers because, at its core, it's also about the trials and tribulations of a middle-class family.

The show stars Tim Allen as Mike Baxter, a married man with four children who works for a sporting goods store and struggles with his sense of manhood in a world where he believes that women run the show. The series didn't always receive the best reviews, with some saying that the jokes felt dated. Regardless, audiences clearly found the show entertaining and funny enough to keep it rolling for a full decade. In fact, it was ABC's third most-watched scripted series in the Spring of 2017, behind only "Grey's Anatomy" and "Modern Family." With a combination of conventional humor and a timeless focus on family values, "Last Man Standing" is bound to be a hit with audiences who enjoy the more wholesome jokes in "The Conners." Both series stand firm on the idea that family makes the world go 'round.


Fans of all the family-based hijinx that "The Conners" has to offer will undoubtedly be equally enthralled by "Parenthood." From "Friday Night Lights" creator Jason Katims, the show follows the completely chaotic Braverman family, helmed by grandparents Zeek (Craig T. Nelson) and Camille (Bonnie Bedelia). Their adult children Adam (Peter Krause), Sarah (Lauren Graham), Crosby (Dax Shepard), and Julia (Erika Christensen) all have anarchic lives of their own, which largely consist of taking care of their children and navigating their relationships with their parents and siblings.

"Parenthood" ran for a total of six seasons, premiering in 2010 and coming to an end in 2015. It was met with largely positive reviews, which praised it for its valuable insight into the craziness of family –- and how worth it that craziness is. Of course, the show also earned high marks for its consistently clever humor. If you're looking for a new show like "The Conners" but are seeking out humor that's a little less on-the-nose, "Parenthood" is without a doubt the series for you.


Even though "Roseanne" ended on an unfortunate note after its star's repeated offensive remarks, it would be odd not to include it on a list of shows like "The Conners." Co-created by Roseanne Barr and Matt Williams, the series first aired on ABC on October 18, 1988. Audiences took to the show quickly, and in Season 2, it became the most viewed series on TV, according to the Nielsen ratings.

"Roseanne" follows a low-income household led by Roseanne Conner (Barr) and her husband Dan (John Goodman), who have three children. These characters are always at each other's throats, but at the end of the day, they love each other more than anything. Part of what viewers loved so much about "Roseanne" is its delightfully sassy sense of humor — one that carries over to "The Conners" despite the absence of Roseanne herself. The show's strong and proud portrayal of working-class life is also a big part of its appeal, just as it is in the spin-off.

Fresh Off the Boat

Based on chef Eddie Huang's autobiography of the same name, "Fresh Off the Boat" follows the Huangs, a Taiwanese American family living in Florida in the 1990s. The show was created by Nahnatchka Khan for ABC and garnered attention and praise not only for being a hilarious depiction of a middle-class American family, but also for being one of the only American sitcoms to focus on an Asian American family (via Shondaland).

"Fresh Off the Boat" balances family comedy and thoughtful reflections on the Asian American experience, bringing a similar kind of hilarious and heartfelt blend as "The Conners" delivers. The Huang family is a delightfully odd bunch, with characters including the cowboy-themed steakhouse owner and family patriarch Louis (Randall Park), his traditional wife Jessica (Constance Wu), and their children, rap enthusiast Eddie (Hudson Young), old soul Emery (Forrest Wheeler), and straight-A student Ian (Evan Huang). If you couldn't tell from the character descriptions, "Fresh Off the Boat" delivers a whole lot of idiosyncratic moments and, of course, more than enough laughs to go around.

Full House

No family sitcom recommendation list would be complete without a mention of the show "Full House," one of the most popular TV series of all time (per Variety). Premiering in 1987, the series follows a sports anchor named Danny Tanner (Bob Saget) whose life is turned upside down when his wife tragically dies and he's left to raise their three children — D.J. (Candace Cameron), Stephanie (Jodie Sweetin), and Michelle (Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen) — on his own. But if there's anything that American sitcoms are intent on teaching us, it's that no one is really alone when it comes to raising a family. So Danny's best friend Joey (Dave Coulier) and brother-in-law Jesse (John Stamos) move in to co-parent with him. 

"Full House" ran from 1987 until 1995, and it was so popular that it spawned a spin-off series, "Fuller House," which ran for another five seasons from 2016 to 2020. The original show is a bonafide classic, and it's often recognized for its wholesome, chaotic, and family-based sense of humor.

Fuller House

You didn't think we were going to sing the praises of "Full House" without giving "Fuller House" its own shoutout, did you? The sequel series was helmed by original show creator Jeff Franklin, and you can certainly tell, as it has a similar sense of sentimentality and humor as the original show.

"Fuller House" stars a grown-up D.J. (Candace Cameron), who, like her father before her, is tragically widowed and left all alone to raise her three sons (maybe you can see where this is going). Luckily, her best friend Kimmy (Andrea Barber), Kimmy's daughter Ramona (Soni Nicole Bringas), and D.J.'s little sister come to the rescue and move in to help the widowed mom out around the house.

"Full House" is a tough show to live up to, and "Fuller House" didn't quite find the same success as its predecessor. Some have criticized "Fuller House" for leaning too hard into crude humor –- something that its predecessor didn't do often. Still, the show garnered sizable viewership numbers early on in its run, averaging 14.4 million adult viewers during its first 35 days on Netflix (per IndieWire).

Modern Family

Christopher Lloyd and Steven Levitan's "Modern Family" has just about everything audiences love in "The Conners," but with a twist. The show puts a fresh new spin on the sitcom format, turning it into a mockumentary where characters speak to the camera like in "The Office."

The show, which follows three related Los Angeles-based families, premiered in 2009, and it quickly became one of TV's all-time biggest moneymakers. According to Forbes, the show raked in a whopping $2.13 million in ad revenue per half-hour. Its monetary success apparently didn't just come from its initial viewership numbers, but also because it's one of the most recorded shows of all time.

But what makes the episodes of "Modern Family" so special, anyway? Well, apart from its innovative take on the beloved family sitcom format, the show boasts an impressive ensemble cast including Sofia Vergara, Ed O'Neill, Julie Bowen, Ty Burrell, and many more. The show's dry, sophisticated sense of humor is also a big draw, and one that fans of the biting wit in "The Conners" will undoubtedly appreciate. At the same time, if you find the traditional sitcom's wholesome comedy style slightly tiresome, you'll undoubtedly take to "Modern Family."


Created by Kenya Barris, "Black-ish" premiered on ABC in 2014 and ran for eight seasons, coming to an end in 2022. It made a huge impact on the world of scripted TV, boldly tackling and shedding light on issues that many Black Americans face through the story of the Johnson family (per NPR). Okla Jones theorized in Essence that "shows like 'Insecure,' 'Atlanta,' and 'Abbott Elementary' –- all helmed by people of color –- were able to succeed and grow in the TV space due to the foundation that Barris set with his award-winning sitcom."

Undoubtedly, one of the reasons that "Black-ish" was able to prosper in the way that it did is because it approached these tough issues with a mix of earnestness and laugh-out-loud humor, all the while constantly highlighting the importance of family. Anthony Anderson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Yara Shahidi, Marcus Scribner, and the rest of the ensemble cast that plays the Johnsons and their friends have phenomenal chemistry, and the show's writing is equally strong in moments of poignancy and silliness. After watching a few episodes, you'll see why the show has earned such high praise, and why it's spawned a number of spin-offs.

Home Improvement

When it comes to depictions of suburban life, it's hard to find a more iconic show than ABC's "Home Improvement." Running from 1991 to 1999, the show follows everyman Tim Taylor (Tim Allen), his wife Jill (Patricia Richardson), and their three sons, Brad (Zachery Ty Bryan), Randy (Jonathan Taylor Thomas), and Mark (Taran Noah Smith). Another prominent character in home improvement (hence the title) is local handyman Wilson (Earl Hindman), who's always willing to help the family out and teach them a thing or two along the way.

Created by Matt Williams, Carmen Finestra, and David McFadzean, the show won numerous awards over the course of its run. It launched Allen into stardom, and it gathered a dedicated following with its central "we're all in this together" message, which it shares with "The Conners." And of course, there's the endlessly entertaining kooky physical comedy that inevitably comes with depicting the relationship between a dysfunctional family and their handyman.

Baby Daddy

Created by Dan Berendsen for ABC, the underrated "Baby Daddy" is yet another delightful, warm-hearted family sitcom in the style of "Full House" and "The Conners." The show follows free-spirited twenty-something bachelor Ben (Jean-Luc Bilodeau), who gets a baby dropped on his doorstep after a one-night stand.

When Ben decides to take on his fatherly duties, his older brother Danny (Derek Theler), roommate Tucker (Tahj Mowry), and best friend Riley (Chelsea Kane) swoop in to save the day. What follows is a hilarious romp that highlights the inevitable mishaps inherent in raising a kid in an unconventional family, and of having a baby that you're totally unprepared for.

The show received mixed reviews, but its balance of sweet and funny is sure to appeal to fans of "The Conners." In 2012, Diane Werts of Newsday wrote that the series "knows when to drop a punch line, when to work the awww factor, and when to get all Sentimental Message Time about characters learning to believe in themselves." If that sounds like the combo you're looking for in your next comedy, then definitely give "Baby Daddy" a try.

Man with a Plan

Another show about a family man whose fatherly duties are put to the test, "Man with a Plan" follows a contractor named Adam Burns (Matt LeBlanc) who's forced to step up in his three-kid household when his wife Andi (Liza Snyder) decides to go back to her old job. Premiering in October 2016, the show ran for four seasons, all of which show the trials and tribulations of the chaotic Burns household and the way that changes in a family can lead to hilarity.

"Man with a Plan" didn't have the greatest critical reception, earning a low approval rating from critics who complained that the plot and humor were a bit stale. But many viewers seem to have a wildly different opinion of the series, praising it for being fun for the whole family and applauding LeBlanc's performance in particular. The show won a People's Choice Award for Favorite New TV Comedy in 2017, and if you don't mind that the series retreads a lot of familiar sitcom tropes, you may find a lot to love here.


Created by Chuck Lorre, Eddie Gorodetsky, and Gemma Bake, "Mom" premiered in September 2013 and ran for eight seasons in total, focusing on mother and daughter duo Christy (Anna Faris) and Bonnie Plunkett (Allison Janney). Over the course of the show, the two struggle to repair their relationship while also attempting to stay sober after both struggling with addiction.

The show is at the same time funny and inspiring, and it's been lauded for not shying away from tough issues like teen pregnancy, grief, and financial stress (via USA Today). During its run, "Mom" proved that a show that largely exists for laughs can still have important things to say, which should resonate with fans of "The Conners." After all, the "Roseanne" spin-off is also a show that doesn't shy away from dealing with complicated issues.

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Kevin Can Wait

When "The King of Queens" star Kevin James announces that he's going to be helming another sitcom, you can be sure of one thing: Jokes are going to be dropped left and right. Though "Kevin Can Wait" was canceled after just two seasons on CBS, it doesn't disappoint in the laughs department. Premiering in 2016, the show follows Kevin (James) — a retired New York cop adjusting to being a full-time dad to his three children and husband to his wife Donna (Erinn Hayes).

Over the course of the show's two seasons, Kevin runs up against a number of parenting blunders and social faux pas, which are bound to keep the audience laughing the whole way through. Though "Kevin Can Wait" is a comedy at heart, it also features some darker storylines, including the death of one of the series' lead characters. Such serious moments weren't universally beloved by the viewers at the time, but if you enjoy a sitcom that occasionally deals with heavier themes, you might not mind.

The Middle

"The Middle" deserves a special shoutout on this list, not only because it has all the laughs and family values that a fan of "The Conners" could possibly ask for, but also because it was actually created by "Roseanne" writers Eileen Heisler and DeAnn Heline. Premiering in 2009, the show ran for a whopping nine seasons. Similar to "The Conners," "The Middle" takes place in Indiana and follows the trials and tribulations of a lower middle class family just trying to make ends meet. 

The series was pretty popular with critics and audiences alike, even earning a spot on Metacritic's list of the best-reviewed new network shows of the 2009-2010 season. It was so popular, in fact, that a spin-off series focused on Eden Sher's character, Sue Heck, was in the works, gearing up to be released in 2019. However, ABC ended up passing on the show, and no other network picked it up (per The Hollywood Reporter). Still, "The Middle" is definitely filled with characters worthy of their own shows. It's never a bad time to revisit everyone's favorite salt-of-the-earth Indiana family.

Raising Hope

"Raising Hope" is one of the best-received sitcoms out there from both a critical and audience standpoint. The show has earned stellar reviews and an assortment of awards and accolades to back them up, including a GLAAD Media Award, a Satellite Award for Martha Plimpton's performance, and several Emmy Award nominations, among other honors.

The show follows 23-year-old, Nashville-based Jimmy Chance (Lucas Neff), who ends up having a baby with a woman he encountered during a one-night-stand. The thing is, she ends up being a serial killer. Jimmy earns custody of their daughter, Hope, while her mother sits in prison, forcing him to navigate his unexpected and strange new situation with his family by his side (of course). One of the more high-concept sitcoms you can find, "Raising Hope" really pushes the limits of what a family can look like, and it pushes similar boundaries in the humor department, too, with dark comedy present in every episode.