Episodes Available: Seasons 1-2
Stars: Louis C.K.
Just go with me for a second when I say that what makes Louie the best comedy on TV is its willingness to not be funny. Louis C.K., who damn near does everything on his FX show but don drag for the female characters, is brave enough to let his show—like life—get dark. This isn't discomfort humor, like something from Tim and Eric. No, when Louie puts the laughs aside, it's too stare confront something difficult. One of the best examples of this is in the second season episode "Eddie," where Louie runs into a comic from his past. Like Nic Cage's character in Leaving Las Vegas, Eddie is planning to kill himself. There is nothing funny about this episode's conclusion. It's just honest.
When the show is at its best—which is basically every damn episode—it moves with no hesitation between absurd laughs and the realest ruminations about a regular-type life. There's nothing else like Louie. —RS