The Dunder-Mifflin staff would like you to give these shows a go.
The Office (US) ended in 2013, after 9 glorious seasons. An adaptation of the original BBC show of the same name (which you can stream on Netflix), the series is a hilarious mockumentary that depicts the lives of office employees of the fictional Dunder-Mifflin Paper Company. We get to follow them around as they live their mundane lives and laugh at their mishaps, but also celebrate their wins and cheer for their various (outlandish) endeavours. The show was a great time, launched a thousand memes and gave us a lovely will-they-won’t-they relationship to swoon over with Jim and Pam. No wonder you miss it.
Thankfully, several other series boast a similar vibe to The Office (US), which means that you can stop re-watching old episodes for a moment and try something new. Even better? They’re all available to stream in Australia, so you don’t have to spend a fortune to have a good time. That’s what she said.
Top 10 TV shows like The Office (US)
- Parks and Recreation
- 30 Rock
- The Good Place
- Brooklyn Nine-Nine
- Party Down
- The Mindy Project
- American Vandal
1. Parks and Recreation (2009)
Created by the same people behind The Office (US), Parks and Recreation is also a mockumentary, this time following a group of people working for the Parks Department in Pawnee, Indiana. They are led by Leslie Knope, an endearing mid-level bureaucrat with a sunny attitude and can-do demeanour. The other employees may not share her enthusiasm, but they’re all a fun bunch of goofballs, so it’s impossible to get bored while binge-watching this little gem.
In all honesty, Season 1 of Parks and Rec is a bit of a miss, but if you stick with it you’ll notice that things improve considerably in Season 2 and only get better in subsequent instalments. The show is offbeat and awkward, very similar to The Office, and simply a joy to watch. Plus, the cast works great together, led by a ferocious and charming Amy Poehler. Stream it on Amazon Prime Video.
- Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope
- Nick Offerman as Ron Swanson
- Aubrey Plaza as April Ludgate
- Chris Pratt as Andy Dwyer
2. Community (2009)
If you love The Office for its wacky characters, Community should be right up your alley. The series centres on a group of community college students, each with their own quirks, as they try to navigate college life together. It doesn’t help much that their school, Greendale, is a bit of a joke. They are led by Jeff, a lawyer who finds that his degree has been revoked and has to enrol in classes to get it back.
Community is snarky and engaging, with a tremendous ensemble cast and a unique sense of humour. The show doesn’t fit into a format and loves to takes risks, so it still feels fresh all these years after it first hit the air. Stream it on Amazon Prime Video.
- Joel McHale as Jeff Winger
- Gillian Jacobs as Britta Perry
- Danny Pudi as Abed Nadir
- Alison Brie as Annie Edison
3. 30 Rock (2006)
Created by Tina Fey, 30 Rock is based on her experience working on Saturday Night Live. The show follows Liz Lemon, head writer for a sketch comedy show, who has to deal with both an arrogant new boss and a crazy new star, all while trying to keep her sanity intact and the show on the air. It’s clever, wacky and perfectly cast.
There’s a lot to enjoy about 30 Rock, from the solid jokes to the intriguing premise. Tina Fey, who plays the lead, is more than happy to share the spotlight, so the supporting players get enough screen time to shine as well. Which is definitely a plus, since they have plenty to offer. The series is available to stream on and Amazon Prime Video.
- Tina Fey as Liz Lemon
- Tracy Morgan as Tracy Jordan
- Alec Baldwin as Jack Donaghy
- Jane Krakowski as Jenna Maroney
4. The Good Place (2016)
Who would have thought a show about the afterlife could be so inventive and entertaining? The Good Place follows Eleanor Shellstrop, a young woman who dies and ends up in the Good Place, despite being a not very good person while she was alive. She figures that someone must have made a mistake but, instead of coming clean, she decides to learn how to be good in order to better fit in with the other Good Place people.
The Good Place is a whole lot of fun, but that isn’t the only thing that makes it a must-watch. It’s also a series about a group of people who try to learn what being good is all about. And yet, it’s never preachy. Instead, it uses humour to point out that maybe we should all be nicer to each other. Oh, and it’s not afraid to blow its premise over and over again, to amazing results. Stream it on Netflix.
- Kristen Bell as Eleanor Shellstrop
- William Jackson Harper as Chidi Anagonye
- Jameela Jamil as Tahani Al-Jamil
- Ted Danson as Michael
5. Brooklyn Nine-Nine (2013)
Brooklyn Nine-Nine centres on Detective Jake Peralta, a dedicated but immature cop. Things change when a new captain with a lot to prove arrives at Brooklyn's 99th precinct, trying to force Jake to shape up. That’s putting things simply, since Brooklyn Nine-Nine is an ensemble show, so there are plenty of characters to fall for. Thanks to a brilliant script, you will be cheering for them all in no time.
Clever and witty, Brooklyn Nine-Nine is surprisingly heartfelt, focusing on the strong bond between the cops working at the 99th precinct. It’s the chemistry between the characters that will win you over from episode one, with Andy Samberg and Andre Braugher in particular making a hilariously odd pair. The show is available on Netflix.
- Andy Samberg as Jake Peralta
- Andre Braugher as Captain Ray Holt
- Melissa Fumero as Amy Santiago
- Stephanie Beatriz as Rosa Diaz
6. Party Down (2009)
Party Down is a funny, offbeat series that follows a group of caterers in Los Angeles, all of them struggling to make it in Hollywood. Each episode finds the crew working a different gig and often getting into embarrassing situations with the varied clientele, so you’re guaranteed a good time. As an added bonus, there are only two seasons to get through, as the show was unfortunately cancelled way too soon.
What makes Party Down stand out from the crowd is that all the characters are both hopeful and bitter, something that often occurs when you know you’re talented but cannot catch a break. It’s easy to relate to that. The series is available to stream on Stan.
- Adam Scott as Henry Pollard
- Ken Marino as Ron Donald
- Ryan Hansen as Kyle Bradway
- Lizzy Caplan as Casey Klein
7. Workaholics (2011)
Workaholics follows three college friends who enter the workforce together, making the transition from slacker students to presentable telemarketers. Well, somewhat. These three basically spend their days doing as little work as possible and then looking for a good time as the evening comes. If you’re bored with your own job and need to live vicariously through someone, this is the perfect show for some escapism.
Funny and weird, Workaholics is the kind of sitcom that isn’t for everybody. But if you find yourself enthralled, you’ll likely binge-watch the whole thing in record time. Despite their flaws, these three friends are impossible to dislike. The show is available to stream on Foxtel Now.
- Blake Anderson as Blake Henderson
- Adam Devine as Adam DeMamp
- Anders Holm as Anders Holmvik
8. The Mindy Project (2012)
As the title of the show suggests, The Mindy Project follows Mindy, a successful doctor. When she’s not working, though, she’s a bit of a mess. If only her personal life were as great as her professional one, maybe Mindy would finally get the rom-com happy ending she desperately hopes for.
Created by Mindy Kaling, who also appeared on (and wrote for) The Office (US), this charming series has an infectious energy that makes it impossible for viewers to look away. Add some appealing characters and fun dialogue into the mix and you’ve got yourself a bona fide hit. The Mindy Project is available on digital providers.
- Mindy Kaling as Mindy Lahiri
- Ike Barinholtz as Morgan Tookers
- Ed Weeks as Jeremy Reed
- Chris Messina as Danny Castellano
9. Borderline (2016)
A quick watch at only 12 episodes (so far), Borderline is a mockumentary following the inept team of the UK Border Force at Northend Airport. That’s the northernmost UK airport and the country’s main entry point for immigrants, which makes for some fun jokes, without being offensive or over the line. It’s like The Office, but in an airport.
Borderline is all about highlighting the ineffective nature of government directive, especially when it mixes with the stupidity of people in positions of power, regardless of how good their intentions may be. It’s an extremely entertaining binge that we promise will make you laugh out loud repeatedly. You can stream Borderline on Netflix.
- David Avery as Tariq
- Jackie Clune as Proctor
- David Elms as Clive
- Liz Kingsman as Andy
10. American Vandal (2017)
American Vandal is quirky and hilarious, which should be enough reason to give it a try. It doesn’t have much in common with The Office except the mockumentary angle, but it’s so good we had to include it on the list. A satire of true-crime documentaries, this Netflix original analyses the aftermath of various high school pranks.
The show is incredibly absorbing and addictive, despite its silly premise. Moreover, it’s all about what it’s like to be young in the age of social media, so it will also give you a lot to think about. When you’re not busy laughing hysterically, that is. American Vandal is available to stream on Netflix.
- Tyler Alvarez as Peter Maldonado
- Griffin Gluck as Sam Ecklund
- Jimmy Tatro as Dylan Maxwell
Bonus: Craving even more content similar to The Office (US)? These shows aren’t available on streaming services, but you can purchase them from digital retailers like iTunes: Modern Family, Superstore and Better Off Ted.
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