Ted Lasso was the most unexpected, and much-needed, feel-good show of 2020. The first season of Jason Sudeikis' Apple TV+ sports comedy focused on the fish-out-of-water story of an American college football coach (Sudeikis) who is recruited to coach an English Premier League team despite his lack of qualifications (he barely understands how the game is played, for one thing), was a sweet, uplifting, and surprisingly emotional watch during such an awful year. It was about the power of friendship, succeeding despite the odds, and homemade biscuits, which means our hopes for the upcoming second season couldn't be higher.
If you're looking for similar shows to pass the time while you wait for Season 2, you're in the right place. Whether you're looking for other feel-good shows, more sports comedies, or another lovably dysfunctional ensemble, you'll find something on this list that will make you laugh out loud.
In many ways, Eastbound & Down's self-serving blowhard Kenny Powers (Danny McBride) and Ted Lasso are two sides of the same coin. When we meet Kenny at the beginning of the series, he's a down-on-his-luck major league baseball player who, on account of having such a bad attitude, was forced into early retirement. He returns to his hometown to teach physical education at his old middle school, only to learn that he's not nearly as respected as he thought. It's a lot like the situation Ted finds himself in, but where he's relentlessly optimistic, Kenny is just looking for a way to con his way back into the spotlight. Eastbound & Down is the id to Ted Lasso's ego, and that's why it's so much fun to watch. Plus, Sudeikis himself has a recurring role in the third season. [Watch on HBO Max]
Jason Sudeikis executive produced (and played a recurring role!) on Tim Robinson and Sam Richardson's criminally underrated comedy about Tim (Robinson) and Sam (Richardson), two best buds from Michigan trying to make their dreams of succeeding in the world of advertising come true. As a pair, Tim and Sam are as gloriously optimistic as Ted even as they continue to fail upwards, and each episode finds them getting involved in goofy new hijinks as they make real efforts to get taken seriously, spurred ahead by their shared drive and undeterred by their (many) failures. Detroiters may not be set in the world of sports, but it shares buddy comedy sensibilities with Ted Lasso, so if you're missing the Diamond Dogs, allow Tim and Sam to pick up the slack. [Watch on Paramount+]
Ted Lasso is one of the two best sports comedies of the last several years. The other? That'd be Brockmire, which aired for four seasons from 2017-2020 on IFC. Hank Azaria gets the role of a lifetime as Jim Brockmire, a former Major League Baseball announcer who is demoted to the minor leagues after a very disturbing on-air meltdown when he discovered his wife was cheating on him. Brockmire is in no way the positive, cheery guy that Ted Lasso is, frequently unloading barrages of incredibly descriptive insults in a cadence than only Azaria can do (the show's bread and butter), but deep down, Brockmire is a show with a ton of heart that's about picking yourself up (and others) from a terrible situation. Doesn't that sound familiar? -Tim Surette [Watch on Hulu]
For another sweet-hearted series, watch Schitt's Creek. Like Ted Lasso, it's a show about people thrown into an environment they don't fit into, centering around the formerly rich Rose family who, after losing all their money, move to a small, quirky town called Schitt's Creek. While the very American Ted is certainly out of place in England, the Roses might as well be on a different planet than the residents of their new town. As Ted Lasso embraces all the oddities of the AFC Richmond team members, Schitt's Creek treats its many weirdos with just as much love and care. It's nice to see characters with such particular personalities -- like Dan Levy's finicky, spoiled David and Catherine O'Hara's flighty, eccentric Moira -- are never the butt of the joke, contributing to the show's overall feel-good nature. It's just a nice, wholesome time. [Watch on Netflix]
Admittedly, The League is darker than Ted Lasso, but if you're looking for another show that will immerse you in the world of sports, look no further. The comedy revolves around a group of highly competitive friends who absorb themselves in their fantasy football league, often to the detriment of their personal lives. While Ted cares less about winning than he does about getting to know his teammates, the characters of The League will do just about anything to come out on top, always ready to sabotage and backstab each other if it means getting what they want. If you wish Ted Lasso took more time to get into the real nitty gritty of English soccer culture, The League is so involved in American football culture that tons of actual football players, like Marshawn Lynch, J.J. Watt, and many others, even guest-starred as themselves. [Watch on Hulu]
Ted Lasso has shades of a good ol' workplace comedy, but if you're looking for a show that will give you a group of strange people bopping around an actual office, check out Mythic Quest. The show revolves around the employees of a video game studio that produces a popular online role-playing game. While Mythic Quest pokes fun at the gaming industry and its avid fans, the show is most notable for its characters, a kooky group that includes narcissistic creative director Ian (Rob McElhenney), neurotic engineer Poppy (Charlotte Nicdao), and out-of-touch head writer C.W. (F. Murray Abraham). While Ted believes the professional success of AFC Richmond relies on the team becoming a family, the crew over at Mythic Quest are just trying to get through the day without clashing egos to the point of no return. It's a joyfully silly watch. [Watch on Apple TV+]
And for a different kind of workplace comedy, meet Superstore. It's not a locker room or a video game studio, but instead a big-box store called Cloud 9. Superstore and Ted Lasso share similar comedic voices, but as is the case with many of the shows on this list, it's the web of relationships between the characters that will remind you most of those great ensemble moments from Ted Lasso, like the episode where the whole team gathers to debate on Martin Scorsese's best film. Plus, if you love the unlikely, endearing love connection between Roy (Brett Goldstein) and Keeley (Juno Temple), you'll have fun watching Jonah (Ben Feldman) and Amy's (America Ferrera) relationship develop over the seasons. [Watch on Hulu]
If Ted Lasso's eternal optimism in the face of a bunch of Debbie downers is what you're looking for more of, then don't miss out on the critically acclaimed (but vastly underwatched, of course) spiritual comedy Lodge 49, which ran for two bodacious seasons on AMC from 2018-2019. Wyatt Russell stars as a surf-obsessed vagabond in Southern California whose life loses meaning after a snakebite leaves him with a limp and unable to catch any more waves. Ever the positive thinker, he finds a home at a fraternal lodge full of eccentric characters, where he may be the chosen one described in the order's prophecy. Lodge 49 is definitely a "vibe show," but its goofy charm and the way its characters lean on each other will remind of you of Ted Lasso. -Tim Surette [Watch on Hulu]
Much like Ted Lasso, A.P. Bio begins with a guy starting a new job he's not a great fit for. The sitcom, created by Saturday Night Live's Mike O'Brien, centers around Jack Griffin (Glenn Howerton), a Harvard professor who loses his dream job to a rival and goes from teaching philosophy to teaching biology at a high school in Ohio. If your favorite thing about Ted Lasso are the scenes between Ted and his boss Rebecca (Hannah Waddingham), the relationship between Jack and Principal Durbin (Patton Oswalt), as Durbin struggles to keep Jack under control, is like a more contentious version of that, only with less baked goods. It's a true comedy of errors that gets better the more it spins out of control. [Watch on Peacock]
Once you get past the fact that What We Do in the Shadows is about vampires, it actually has a lot in common with Ted Lasso. The mockumentary series has nothing to do with sports, and it has much more of a madcap energy, but both are ensemble shows, both are very funny, and both delight in placing its seemingly clueless main characters in ridiculous situations. Shadows chronicles the daily lives and antics of four vampire roommates who live together on Staten Island, but the draw has less to do with the supernatural elements than it does with the relationships between the characters. Like Ted Lasso, the cast is just so good together, and there's probably an alternate timeline in which Nate (Nick Mohammad) and Guillermo (Harvey Guillén) meet up to commiserate about being the group punching bag. [Watch on Hulu]
Maybe you're just looking for another show that stars a Saturday Night Live alum -- if so, it's time to check out The Last Man on Earth. Will Forte plays Philip Tandy, seemingly the only survivor after a virus decimates the global population (this show was created pre-Covid, believe it or not). Naturally, he comes to discover that he's not, in fact, alone in the world, and the comedy is at its best when it lets all of the characters' distinct personalities -- like Kristen Schaal's moralistic Carol and January Jones' Melissa, who struggles with mental illness -- mesh with each other. That said, the highlight is getting to see a different side of Forte than we saw on SNL, much in the way that Ted Lasso is fun because it gives us Jason Sudeikis doing something different than just playing Joe Biden. The show also features guest turns from other SNL legends too, including Will Ferrell, Kristen Wiig, Fred Armisen, and, yes, Sudeikis himself, who shows up in the hilarious, tragic role of Phil's astronaut brother, Mike. [Watch on Hulu]