The internet seems to breed hyperbole. I think it's the anonymity coupled with the unprecedented accessibility the medium provides. Whereas in most situations in life individuals are held accountable for their words/actions, the internet provides a wild west for any jackass with a mouse and a modem. Then once the initial overblown remark is made every subsequent poster/blogger/whatever feels the need one-up the statement with their own wild embellishments. This behavior has become so pervasive that its leaked into mainstream media outlets. Formerly trusted news sources like CNN and 60 Minutes have become so wrapped up in the hype that their reporting has suffered and names have been tarnished. It's a fucking disaster and not one that should be glossed over on the way to the story about Paris Hilton's penitentiary eating routine or a photo of the Fattest. Woman. Ever. It's a serious problem that requires serious people to offer serious solutions.
That being said, this is the most exciting link on the internet!!! I can't fucking believe how cool that shit is. Below I've put together a bunch of recommendations for your viewing pleasure.
Disclaimer: Not all of the shows on the site have the full series available. This is a major hindrance for certain programs and not a big deal for others (starting mid-way through a season of Nip/Tuck would be much more difficult that joining the Sara Silverman Program mid-way through for instance). I've kept that factor in mind in my recommendations. Also, there are certain programs that I am not going to recommend due to their ubiquity in pop culture (Seinfeld, Sopranos etc.) or due to past endorsements (Arrested Development, the Wire etc.).
5. My Name is Earl: Funny and innovative American sitcom. We don't make many of those anymore.
4. Oz: I just googled t.v. hall of fame to see if there is one (there is), because at some point it's going to have to devote an entire wing to HBO programming. Oz never had the audience of the Sopranos or Entourage but it is still a dynamite series and would be higher if there were more episodes.
3. The Office (UK): I bought the DVD set of this show about a year and a half ago and it took me 3 episodes to fully appreciate the humor (much dryer than Coupling for instance). Once acclimated its a gem worth the time.
2. Deadwood: Another horse from the HBO stable, each show covers about a day of action in the town of Deadwood but so much happens you lose years from your life.
1. Coupling: This is like the British Friends, only funny. The show was not constricted by the shackles of political correctness or derailed by the emasculation of its male characters and as such, the show is genuinely funny and genuinely sincere.
Also recommended but not included for various reasons: Weeds, This American Life, Sarah Silverman Program, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip