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Find Free TV Shows Online

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With people increasingly watching TV in different ways that don’t necessarily even involve TV sets, networks and media companies are always looking for new avenues to reach audiences. Here’s a quick guide to where you can find free streaming episodes of your favorite TV comedies online, if you’re looking to discover something new or just catch up on what you missed.

ABC

ABC
Courtesy of ABC

What It Is: Official site for ABC.

Highlights: Full episodes of Scrubs and Better Off Ted, plus clips of upcoming shows Cougar Town and Modern Family.

User Experience: You have to download a separate player to view content, but once you've done that, video loads easily and is available to watch in full-screen mode, with limited commercials.

CBS

CBS
Courtesy of CBS

What It Is: Official site for CBS.

Highlights: Clips but no full episodes of current CBS sitcoms. However, there are full episodes of classic sitcom Family Ties.

User Experience: Videos play directly in the browser with limited commercials, and can be viewed in full-screen.

NBC

NBC
Courtesy of NBC

What It Is: Official site for NBC.

Highlights: Full episodes of 30 Rock, The Office and Parks and Recreation, plus full episodes of 1980s sitcom Charles in Charge.

User Experience: Videos play directly in browser with limited commercials, and are available in full-screen.

ABC Family

ABC Family
Courtesy of ABC Family

What It Is: Official site for ABC Family.

Highlights: Full episodes of 10 Things I Hate About You and Ruby and the Rockits.

User Experience: You have to download a separate player to view content (the same as ABC's), but once you've done that, video loads easily and is available to watch in full-screen mode, with limited commercials.

Hulu

Hulu
Courtesy of Hulu

What It Is: Popular online video site features full episodes of current shows on NBC, ABC, Fox, FX and ABC Family, as well as a wide range of classic, cult and foreign shows.

Highlights: Full episodes of current favorites like 30 Rock, The Office, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and Scrubs; classic shows ranging from Arrested Development to Bewitched to Newhart; cult British comedies like Spaced and Peep Show; and tons more. The most extensive library of any site.

User Experience: Videos play directly in browser with limited commercials, and are available in full-screen.

The WB

The WB
Courtesy of The WB

What It Is: The network may no longer exist, but its website offers full episodes of classic shows produced by Warner Brothers.

Highlights: Shows with full episodes available include Friends, In Living Color and The Ben Stiller Show.

User Experience: Videos play directly in browser with limited commercials, and are available in full-screen or separate pop-out windows.

IMDb

IMDb
Courtesy of IMDb

What It Is: Indispensable information source the Internet Movie Database also has a decent-size library of shows to watch.

Highlights: Full episodes are available of current shows (including 30 Rock, The Office, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and Scrubs) as well as a variety of classics, all integrated with the site's informational pages.

User Experience: Videos play directly in browser with limited commercials, and are available in full-screen. Navigation can be a little confusing, though, if you don't know what you're looking for.

TV.com

TV.com
Courtesy of TV.com

What It Is: Another informational site that also offers up some full-episode videos.

Highlights: A rotating range of full episodes of mostly older shows, as well as links to off-site videos of other shows, accessed via the site's extensive database.

User Experience: Videos play directly in browser with limited commercials, and are available in full-screen. The video section can be tough to navigate, though, and searching for individual shows yields better results.

Internet Archive

Internet Archive
Courtesy of Internet Archive

What It Is: A treasure-trove of public-domain material.

Highlights: Public domain means primarily older, obscure sitcoms here, including such forgotten shows as My Little Margie and Meet Corliss Archer. Great for historical curiosity and accessing material not available on DVD.

User Experience: Videos play directly in browser with no commercials, and are available in full-screen. Because this is public-domain material, video quality varies, and the sheer quantity of content can make finding what you're looking for difficult. Try searching for "sitcom" and clicking on one of the keywords to browse.

Fancast

Fancast
Courtesy of Fancast

What It Is: An extensive video-streaming site featuring TV shows as well as movies.

Highlights: Current shows including 30 Rock, The Office and It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia have only a handful of episodes available, but you can catch tons of episodes of older shows varying from Reba to Arrested Development to Dream On.

User Experience: Videos play directly in browser with limited commercials, and are available in full-screen.

AOL Television

AOL
Courtesy of AOL

What It Is: The Internet portal has a dedicated page featuring some current and many classic shows.

Highlights: A smattering of episodes of current shows including 30 Rock, The Office and It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and more extensive collections of older shows including ALF, Benson, Welcome Back Kotter and more.

User Experience: Videos play directly in browser with limited commercials, and are available in full-screen.

Joost

Joost
Courtesy of Joost

What It Is: This site features original web-only comedy content alongside full episodes of a few random TV comedies.

Highlights: A haphazard collection of shows including The State, The Dick Van Dyke Show and Free Radio, among others.

User Experience: Videos play directly in browser, some with limited commercials and some with none, and are available in full-screen.

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