'Bob's Burgers' gets funnier as it goes on

BOB’S BURGERS: The Belchers — Bob, his wife and their kids in the “Human Flesh,” series premiere episode of BOB’S BURGERS airing Sunday, Jan. 9 (8:30-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. BOB’S BURGERS ™ and © 2010 TTCFFC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

“Bob’s Burgers” is one of the best shows on TV right now, and it’s probably the funniest. The voice acting is superb, with each member of Belcher family – Bob, his wife, Linda, and their three children, Tina, Gene and Louise – having enormously funny and distinctive personalities, and it just keeps getting better with every season.

After the latest episode, “Easy Com-mercial, Easy Go-mercial,” aired on Jan. 26, the show went on a short hiatus, and is expected to return sometime this month (they’re being pretty vague about it). One good thing about this wait is that, if you haven’t seen the show, you can catch up. Here are my 10 favorite episodes, to help you on your way:

1. “Tina-Rannosaurus Wrecks” (Season 3, Episode 7)

Every one of the Belchers is so funny and unique that it’s odd how much of a breakout character Tina has become. “Tina-Rannosaurus Wrecks” shows why she’s become so popular, opening with her greatest moan ever and ultimately revealing her as the most goodhearted member of the family. “Tina-Rannosaurus Wrecks” is also ingeniously plotted, escalating from a small car accident to Bob being blackmailed by a sleazy insurance agent.

Best Line – Louise: “His one wish was to be buried at the house he was murdered in.” Gene: “Yeah, and with the shovel he was murdered with. Can you believe he was poisoned with a shovel?”

2. “Turkey in a Can” (Season 4, Episode 5)

At its core, “Bob’s Burgers” is a show about family, and the reason it pulls off this concept so well is because it never lets the audience forget how much the Belchers love each other. The kids are all weird, but the show isn’t cruel towards them, and Bob gets frustrated a lot, but he never seems like anything less than a loving father. The Thanksgiving episode “Turkey in a Can” takes a ridiculous plot and, with a twist in the end, turns it into a story about how much Bob cares about his children.

Best Line – Tina: “There’s something in the toilet and I sat on it and it was cold and now I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to go to the bathroom again.”

3. “The Belchies” (Season 2, Episode 1)

It’s not as well-plotted as “Tina-Rannosaurus Wrecks” or as meaningful as “Turkey in a Can,” but this parody of “The Goonies” is the episode I would most recommend for sheer humor value.

Best Line – Teddy: “Whoa, your sex night took a weird turn, huh, Bobby?”

4. “Sheesh! Cab, Bob?” (Season 1, Episode 6)

The first five episodes of the series were funny, but this was where the show finally figured out the direction it was going to take. Like “Turkey in a Can,” this episode deals heavily with Bob’s love for his children, particularly Tina, who wants a big party for her 13th birthday. Bob takes up a second job driving a cab to pay for the party, where he meets a group of transvestite prostitutes and possibly smokes crack (“If I did, I liked it”). Hilarious, but ultimately very sweet as well.

Best Line – Bob: “We’re not kissing Jimmy Jr!” Gene: “Yes we are!”

5. “Burgerboss” (Season 2, Episode 4)
Bob becomes obsessed with beating an arcade game after his nemesis Jimmy Pesto writes “Bob Sux” on the leaderboard. He gets help from video game enthusiast Darryl (voiced brilliantly by Aziz Ansari) and begins hallucinating after taking too many painkillers.

Best Line – Louise: “He had sex then we happened! Deal with it!”

6. “Fort Night” (Season 4, Episode 2)

The first “Bob’s Burgers” Halloween episode, season three’s “Full Bars,” was already pretty great, and they somehow topped it here. The kids get trapped inside a fort on Halloween and are unable to go trick-or-treating. Meanwhile, Bob and Linda try to put together a dragon costume.

Best Line – Tina: “Why is my butt wet?” Gene: “Butts get wet, Tina! It’s what they do!”

7. “Art Crawl” (Season 1, Episode 8)

While “Sheesh! Cab, Bob?” is my favorite season one episode, “Art Crawl” is often seen as a turning point in the series, where it became funnier, stranger and riskier.

Best Line – Louise: “I’ve been honest with these two since the day Gene got fat.” Gene: “I remember the ice cream sandwich that did it. I regret nothing!”

8. “Easy Com-mercial, Easy Go-mmercial” (Season 4, Episode 11)

The most recent episode, and a great one. Bob tries to drive customers away from Jimmy Pesto’s restaurant by casting an ex-football player in his Super Bowl commercial. The plan fails when said football player does a commercial for Pesto, as well.

Best Line – Gene: “He pees sitting down, facing the toilet!”

9. “Boyz 4 Now” (Season 3, Episode 21)

Tina drags Louise to a boy band concert, where Louise gets her first crush. “Bob’s Burgers” handles character development much better than other animated shows, and this episode adds a lot of depth to Louise.

Best Line – Tina: “I’m no hero. I put my bra on one boob at a time like everyone else.”

10. “Nude Beach” (Season 3, Episode 11)

I love this episode mostly for Fred Armisen’s performance as Tommy, a health inspector who wants to be a rock star. While it is a great episode from beginning to end, Armisen is the main reason it made my top 10.

Best Line – Tina’s deadpan, “Hey, Dad, whoa, whoa, whoa, rewind. I’d like to hear your amazing news.”

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