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5 Shows like Bob’s Burgers: Animated Family Life
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5 Shows like Bob’s Burgers: Animated Family Life

Hannah Nwoko itcherIf you’re fond of watching hilarious animated family shows with their own brands of humour, then you’ll love these other TV shows like ‘Bob’s Burgers’, including ‘King of the Hill’, ‘American Dad’ and ‘The Simpsons’.
~ Hannah Nwoko

Life’s Not Easy When You’re Raising Kids

‘Bob’s Burgers’ is a captivatingly strange series based around a small, greasy spoon restaurant owned by Bob Belcher. It follows his family – loud mouth wife, Linda, awkward tween, Tina, middle child, Gene, and curious youngest daughter, Louise.

Although on the surface ‘Bob’s Burgers’ appears to be a show about a bunch of fart and butt jokes, it’s way more than that – it delves into the hardship of owning a restaurant/ business, financial family struggles and dealing with kids who are involved in constant misadventures.

The great thing about ‘Bob’s Burgers’ is that it tells stories of relatable and realistic problems – some animated comedies take narratives and ideas to different realms, worlds and fantasies, but this show remains firmly grounded in real life.

If you’re keen on a bit of cheeky animated comedy that revolves around family life, then this list of TV shows similar to ‘Bob’s Burgers’ will give you a range of similar and slightly different series for you to chose from.

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‘The Simpsons’ (Fox, 1989)

Classic TV show, ‘The Simpsons’, follows a middle-American family – Homer, a loveable but hapless family man, hardworking housewife Marge, underachieving troublemaker son Bart, overachieving activist daughter, Lisa and baby Maggie.

The family is dysfunctional in some regard and many episodes explore their relationships, bonds and differences with one another. Trying to deal with Bart’s antics and keeping up with Lisa’s sharpness proves a difficult task at times but the family always remain as a solid unit, through thick and thin.

Similarity Match: 90%
While both inject humour relating to family life, ‘The Simpsons’ is different to ‘Bob’s Burgers’ mainly due to the type of humorous content involved – ‘The Simpsons’ is much more family-friendly.

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‘King of the Hill’ (Fox, 1997)

‘King of the Hill’ is an animated adult TV series like ‘Bob’s Burgers’ because of it’s hilarious, awkward and interesting take on family comedy – this could have something to do with both shows having the same Creators and Executive Producers.

The show illustrates an average middle-class family, the Hills (Peggy, Bobby and Hank), documenting their day-to-day lives in a fictional Texan town. Popular themes on the show include parent-child relationships (battles between generations), friendship, loyalty and justice, along with a host of hilarious life lessons.

Similarity Match: 80%
While ‘Bob’s Burgers’ has more focus on workplace-family issues and character driven comedy, ‘King of the Hill’ contains more shock humour and ‘adultswim’ material. Both shows, however, are part of the handful of animated comedies on FOX not created by Seth MacFarlane.

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‘Family Guy’ (Fox, 1999)

Full of dark humour and the frequent mocking of serious themes, ‘Family Guy’ follows the lives of the Griffins (Peter, Lois, Meg, Chris, Stewie and Bryan) along with a host other regular characters.

As the title indicates, the series revolves around family life and the happenings of lovable but ignorant Peter. The narrative often diverts from Peter’s life and focuses, for example, of the adventures of Stewie and Bryan or Meg’s school life.

Widely considered one of the best TV shows of our generation, in between random hilarities and shocking moments, ‘Family Guy’ touches on subtle mature themes including politics and gay rights, which makes it a pretty well rounded show.

Similarity Match: 70%
‘Bob’s Burgers’ is nowhere near as blunt or crude as ‘Family Guy’ but both shows display family life from interesting and humorous perspectives.

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‘American Dad’ (Fox, 2005)

‘American Dad’ follows far-right, conservative and patriotic Stan Smith, along with his family – gullible and ditsy wife Francine, rebel and Leftist daughter Hayley, nerdy son Steve and borderline schizophrenic alien Roger.

What makes ‘American Dad’ a great series like ‘Bob’s Burgers’ is the regular incorporation of Stan’s job and work life into the storyline and other character’s lives – he plays a CIA agent although his efforts are comically questionable!

Similarity Match: 70%
‘American Dad’ and ‘Bob’s Burgers’ are pretty similar in that both dads in the shows are passionate about what they do. Bob loves flipping burgers and Stan loves protecting his country.

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‘The Cleveland Show’ (Fox, 2009)

With an atypical but modern family set-up, ‘The Cleveland Show’ is a sort of spinoff of ‘Family Guy’, with the characters being inextricably linked.

The show follows quintessentially nice guy, Cleveland Brown, as he rekindles his love with his high school crush, Donna, after the abrupt death of his wife.

As his relationship with Donna flourishes and they wed, we watch as Cleveland’s life changes – he and his equally lovable son have to get acquainted with his new overly flirtatious step-daughter, Roberta, and his new 5-year-old step-son Rollo who loves the ladies.

With the head of the house being no-nonsense, hardheaded Donna, Cleveland must navigate his way through raising his kids, providing for his family and maintaining his social life without disappointing or annoying Donna.

Similarity Match: 65%
The family set-up in ‘The Cleveland Show’ is slightly different with stepchildren being involved but the show still involves narratives about the hardship of raising kids – this time from a much more modern and diverse perspective.

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Kids versus Parents

I think these five shows are similar to ‘Bob’s Burgers’ in their own ways. Family life is always the focal point but they also differ from the show in terms of types of humour, recurring themes and narrative content.

Anything I missed? Let me know which shows like ‘Bob’s Burgers’ you recommend!

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