Image via Wired


Think of the most successful TV shows of our time and you'll notice many of them involve workplace situations; a few of the Friends' characters worked in their much-loved Central Perk, newcomer House of Cards has the White House and US Senate as its backdrop and The Wire featured a long string of work environments from police stations to newspaper offices and less savoury drug den operations.

But what about the TV shows, sitcoms and dramas that made a working enviroment the focus of the action? Well, they are still some of the best television shows we've ever seen. Here are our favourites TV sitcoms set in the workplace...

The Office

The ultimate workplace sitcom, The Office captured the idiosyncracies and ironies of working in an office environment. Office politics, office gossip, office weirdos and a boss we all loved to hate, The Office made Ricky Gervais a super-celebrity. Best of all it even spawned a US version that was just as good as the original.

Mad Men

As much about the ad industry in the 1960s as it is anything else, including Christina Horrocks and all those fabulous vintage dresses, Mad Men has given us steamy workplace romances, drunken creative meetings and numerous in-office brawls. Surely, it must also be the only TV drama to have someone lose their foot in a grass cutting incident at a Christmas party!

Image by mezclaconfuIsa

The IT Crowd

Capitalising on an industry rich in stereotypes, the IT Crowd did well to humanise the folks you phone up to fix your hardware issues. With snappy dialogue and off the wall character traits, the IT Crowd made it cool to work in IT... finally!

Are You Being Served?

One of the UK's longest-running sitcoms this character and innuendo rich TV series made household names out of the actors and their catchphrases. It almost certainly wouldn't have had quite the same instant appeal had it not been set in a department store, a working environment so many still relate to.

Image via Micro Filiums

30 Rock

The series that made Tina Fey a household name opened our eyes to what it's like to work behind the scenes at an American cable network. Playing on a number of TV stereotypes - unstable celebrities, ambitious egos and unkempt creatives - 30 Rock won a ton of Emmies and made Alec Baldwin a household name... again.

Ally McBeal

This legal comedy-drama all but transformed the way we all felt about coffee thanks to one particular scene whereby Ally and her female colleague enjoy their first frothy coffee of the day. Featuring quirky characters and some outright bizarre moments, Ally McBeal almost made working in a law firm look like fun. Almost.

Frasier

A radio station provided the workplace setting for Seattle's most famous TV export. Pychiatrist Dr. Frasier Crane's Sunday night talk show was the focal point of a sitcom that ran for over ten years, though his journey "helping" those who called in did little to mask his own nuances and idiosyncracies, not to mention those of his family, colleagues and friends. But how did Frasier end up back in Seattle? The answer lies in the following show.

Cheers

Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name? And didn't Cheers make you feel like that underground Bostonian bar was the very place where everyone knew your name? With colourful regulars - including Dr Frasier Crane and his ongoing marital problems - and a long-running will-they-won't-they love story between Ted Danson and Kirstie Alley's characters, Cheers ran for eleven years and the bar remains one of Boston's most popular tourist attractions.

Image by Andre Pierre

Fawlty Towers

Many find it hard to believe that this TV series only ran for two seasons. In fact, there are no more than 12 episodes of Fawlty Towers in existence, but to English speaking audiences around the world it's become a long-lasting hit. Farcical and politically incorrect in equal measures, it's hard to believe that Basil Fawlty was based on a real life hotelier that John Cleese and the Monty Python gang came across while staying in Torquay on the southern English coast.

The West Wing

Arguably featuring the ultimate workplace, The West Wing, was, of course, set mostly in the west wing of the White House. Quick, smart and cool, The West Wing revealed just how demanding and soul-destroying American politics is and left us all wondering if that many political dealings are really done while walking down a corridor with your colleague.