Binge It Again: 6 Shows with Replay Value as Good as ‘The Office’


Look, we get it. After a long day of navigating the modern world in all of its complications and eccentricities, all you really want to do is unwind. A good laugh, perhaps, to help remind you that you’re not crazy (but the world certainly is). Or maybe a gentle tug of the heartstrings to reconfirm that there is good in the world and good people behind it all.

Or maybe, like any good human in an increasingly disconnected world, you just want to feel something familiar.

Whatever we’re after, there is a good chance that we have been getting it in the same place. Although The Office first premiered in the United States in 2005, it has quickly become one of the most watched shows of all time. While experts credit this to Netflix streaming boom that was happening at the same time, it’s undeniable that the show has picked up more than a few loyal followers.

‘Loyal’ might be a bit of an understatement. For many, The Office has become the go-to binge option for casual viewing. It doesn’t matter that the show ended in 2013. Nor does it seem to matter that a string of incredible shows have arisen in its wake. For real Office fans, the only thing to watch right after the finale is the pilot.

It’s time to break the cycle. Here is out list of shows with a re-play value so high that you might finally be able to step out of Scranton, PA, even if it’s just long enough to forget about the cringe-worthy Dwight spinoff attempt in S09E17 …


6 Shows With a Replay Value (Almost) as Good as The Office

Parks and Recreation


It may seem like an obvious place to start, but Parks & Recreation really did manage to capture a good degree of the magic that made The Office so popular. That is perhaps no surprise considering that the mockumentary-style satire is the brainchild of Greg Daniels and Michael Schur, the creative team that is credited with bringing The Office to American audiences.

Where’s the Replay Value?

Parks and Recreation was the spiritual successor to The Office in more ways than one, but perhaps the most important is in how the show treated the characters that populated it. These shows have no need for villains in the traditional dramatic sense; Instead Daniels & Schur created (another) world where good people were just trying their best. The result was a final product with an incredible sense of optimism woven into its very fabric.

Besides, if a show can get you to feel this much about a fictitious pony (R.I.P. Lil’ Sebastian) then they must be doing something right.

Number of Episodes: 125

Where to Watch: Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime

Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee


Since the shows inception in 2012, comedian Jerry Seinfeld has offered viewers small doses of big comedy through his signature series Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. The premise was actually quite genius: Jerry would pair his passion for collectible automobiles with his vast network of celebrity acquaintances for small, streamable episodes that were available for free. The show has since been picked up by Netflix and has multiple seasons under its belt, landing stars as big as Barry Obama himself.

Where’s the Replay Value?

Seinfeld’s show is a welcome addition to the world of streaming because of the simplicity of its premise. It’s basically just a conversation between two people (sound familiar, Seinfeld fans?) which makes it possible to follow closely even when you aren’t looking at the screen. In addition, the complete lack of drama in the show is a nice break from the manufactured drama that is so intrinsic in today’s reality television.   

Number of Episodes: 72

Where to Watch: Netflix

30 Rock


Premiering in 2006 only one year after The Office first hit the small screen, 30 Rock quickly became known for its rapid paced humor and irreverent jabs at the showbiz industry. Running for 7 seasons, Tina Fey’s megahit comedy quickly earned itself a number of awards including a pretty impressive number of Primetime Emmys. But what exactly made the show so popular?

Some fans point to the show’s rapid wit when posed with the question. There are few comedies on television, past or present, that have been able to pack as many jokes into a half-hour format at 30 Rock. In fact, Vulture’s Splitsider calculated that there were somewhere between nine to 11 jokes per minute, way more than anything else on the tube.

Granted, it can take a few episodes to ‘tune your brain’ to the unique pace and kinetic energy that is present with this show. But if you’re more than 3 or 4 episodes in and you’re not totally hooked, then it’s not for you.

Where’s the Replay Value?

Tina Fey’s quick-witted writing makes 30 Rock one of the most densely comedic properties of all time. Paired with expert comedic timing from Alec Baldwin, Tracy Morgan, and Jane Krakowski and you have a show that requires a re-watch if you want to come close to picking up on every joke.

In perhaps what was the show’s most unique element, the ongoing mentor / mentee relationship between Fey’s Liz Lemon and Baldwin’s Jack Donaghy is far richer than it has any right to be considering the wacky tone that dominates nearly every other moment. The result is non-stop laughs peppered with little jabs into the heart, the perfect evening combo.

Number of Episodes: 138

Where to Watch: Hulu / Comedy Central

Chef’s Table


Okay. So maybe it’s a bit of a stretch to recommend a cooking show to a group of people whose culinary interests only go so far as watching people put their coworkers stuff in Jell-O, or arguing about whether Alfredo’s Pizza Café is any better than Pizza by Alfredo.

Chef’s Table doesn’t have any pranks or hijinks. As far as we can tell, there is no multi-season “will they / wont they” relationship. There’s plenty of dinner, but not nothing quite as cringey the infamous Dinner Party.  

Where’s the Replay Value?

What Chef’s Table does have, and it has it in spades, is the ability to completely capture those stray, misfiring neurons and lull them into a comfortable (if not hungry) relaxation.


The show also has some of the most incredible visuals of any docu-series that’s out there, making it a good option to put on in the background. Looking for a different experience altogether? Watching Chef’s Table on mute with your own music playing instead is a great way to keep your inner food-critic inspired.

Number of Episodes: 26

Where to Watch: Netflix

The Good Place


I’ve got to get this out of the way first and foremost: it might very well be impossible to make any kind of ‘best-of’ TV list without including The Good Place. The popularity of this show is so overwhelming, in fact, that we wondered if we should even bother mentioning a show that everyone is probably already watching.

Still, we’ve got to recognize game. The Good Place has been one of the most consistently high rated and reviewed shows of the last few years. It’s brightly colored universe is brought to life by a series of unforgettable performances from both Ted Danson and Kristen Bell, and the show’s premise (it’s difficult to go into without getting into spoiler territory) manages to stay fresh due to regular and well thought out plot twists and turns.

Where’s the Replay Value?

The Good Place’s bright attitude, accessible wit, and bite-sized philosophy make it the perfect candidate for a ReBinge. It’s also a lot of fun revisiting earlier seasons with the knowledge of later episodes. Also, did we mention that the show is run by none other than Mike Schur himself? The DNA of The Office is present here, even if only subtly.

Number of Episodes: 39

Where to Watch: Netflix, NBC, Hulu

Brooklyn Nine Nine


In what was a pretty result of a loyal fan uprising, the cop-comedy Brooklyn Nine Nine was recently saved from cancellation at the zero hour by a new network that saw just how valuable a show like this is, and perhaps more importantly, how important it will become. That’s because it manages to combine the addictive ‘just another episode’ mentality of the procedural crime drama with the reliable beat-by-beat comedy of a Michael Schur joint (yes, he helped create this one, too).

Our prediction? Brooklyn Nine Nine will become an even more valuable streaming property as more and more people come to discover exactly how re-watchable it is.

Where’s the Replay Value?

Perhaps this question is best answered by one of several glowing Rotten Tomatoes reviews for Season Two: "Brooklyn Nine-Nine's winning cast, appealing characters and wacky gags make it good comfort food."

Number of Episodes: 119

Where to Watch: Hulu, NBC

BONUS PICK: The Joy of Painting with Bob Ross


Like Chef’s Table, this may seem like a strange show to recommend, but we are doing it anyway. That’s because Bob Ross is hands down one of the most effective ways to calm your mind and re-activate the kind, generous person inside of us. He may very well be the key to making the world a better place.

Can you imagine if every person watched a Bob Ross episode before heading into rush hour traffic? Or before that big sales presentation? Or after a rough day? It would be a world full of people that believed in happy trees and happy mistakes. People that believed in themselves and each other. Some might call it a paradise.

Where’s the Replay Value?

More to the point, Bob Ross’ gentle affirmations are delivered with a thick and almost velvety cadence. It’s the perfect thing if you are like me and need someone to talk you to sleep every now and then.

Number of Episodes: 403

Where to Watch: Netflix, PBS