Politicians provide choice cuts that Jon Stewart skewers nightly to make deliciously funny dishes on his show. But reality television’s abundance has provided host Joel McHale with even finer ingredients to whip up a superior creation each week on the appropriately named The Soup. Of course it’s scary that the politicians Stewart and his viewers feast on are entrusted with our national and economic security. And reality TV personalities like Tila Tequila and the awkward studs attempting to bed The Cougar actually deserve to be sliced and diced by the jagged edges of McHale’s wit. But picking on Travel Channel’s Andrew Zimmern because he drinks calf’s blood? C’mon, Joel, that’s his brand of soup.

Honorable Mentions:

Gavin & Stacey, BBC America: Perhaps this boy-meets-girl oddball comedy import works because viewers identify with a love story that includes plenty of laughs.

Greek, ABC Family: Comedy isn’t the first word that leaps to mind to describe the critically acclaimed series about a group of college students at Cyprus-Rhodes University. Still, how can you not laugh at this series’ regular doses of frat house antics?

Monk, USA: Leave it to USA to combine a one-joke show with a weekly mystery and end up with a hit that’s endured for 8 seasons.

Psych, USA: Nothing succeeds like success. USA followed its other monosyllabically titled detective series with this one, also with a zany lead character who is, well, a bit psychic.

Fast Fact

  • The Soup’s ratings for ’09 are up 6% vs ’08; the show averages 1.1 million total viewers and ranks as ad-supported cable’s #1 original in its time slot among 18-49s.


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