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12 Shows Like The Rehearsal and Other Comedic Docu-series

Shows like The Rehearsal

Shows like The Rehearsal and other documentary comedies blur the line between traditional comedy and real-life personalities, and it is for this reason that this subgenre has garnered a devoted audience looking for the next quality show to scratch their itch. If you’re one of those people, then you’re in the right place, as we’ve done the leg work and created a list of 12 shows just like The Rehearsal.  

The Rehearsal features Nathan Fielder, who also acts as the executive producer as a host of sorts, who helps ordinary people living their everyday lives, practice conversations that they are yet to have, by recreating those exact situations through the use of sets and paid actors. This show is a spin-off Of Nathan Fielder’s previous show, Nathan for You.A highly regarded show and subject to immense critical acclaim, The Rehearsal is noted for its use of absurdist comedy and deadpan delivery to create a truly hilarious show that will keep you rolling over for hours as you binge. Check out this list for more of that.

List of Shows like The Rehearsal

1. Joe Pera Talks To You (2018)

Joe Pera Talks To You features comedian Joe Pera as a fictionalized version of himself. He spends his days talking to us, the viewers, about mundane and simple things like breakfast, work and dreams. This version of Pera lives in Michigan and works as a choir conductor at a middle school in the Upper Peninsula

It shares the same deadpan style of delivery with shows like The Rehearsal, and goes against the grain for shows of this type, due to the more soft spoken nature of its host. It’s been hailed as the “anti-cringe” of comedy shows, taking away focus from outlandish gags and delivery. If you fancy this style, give it a try.

2. How To with John Wilson (2020)

Every comedic docu-series needs a strong protagonist as its center, as seen in series similar to The Rehearsal. How To with John Wilson is one of the lot, and as expected it focuses on John Wilson as he gives personal advice to his viewers in short 25 minute episodes. The show is shot in the streets of New York in a documentary style.

How To with John Wilson can be truly thought-provoking at times, and equally strange too. This show has been praised for having a good blend of documentary styles all mixed together to create a satisfying whole. It was recently renewed for its third season on HBO, so check it out there if you have a subscription.  

3. Good Timing with Jo Firestone (2021)

Good Timing with Jo Firestone is a comedy docu-series centered on Jo Firestone and a group of 16 elderly women. Jo sits down with her ‘students’ during the pandemic to help this group of octogenarians perfect their comedic skills, all culminating in their very own live stand-up show headline.

The show is a lighthearted romp similar to series like The Rehearsal, with this group of women seeing the humor in their relatively mundane lives. Good Timing with Jo Firestone earned plaudits from critics and viewers alike, and is definitely worth your time.

4. Nathan for You (2013)

As previously noted, Nathan for You preceded The Rehearsal. The show focuses on Nathan Fielder, a graduate of business school, who uses the skills he has learnt to help small businesses going through rough patches to turn a profit. He goes above and beyond to create life changing plans for his clients

However, the more outlandish his plans and proposals, it seems the harder it fails. An undisputed critical success, Nathan for You has been called a brilliant comedy that makes good use of cringe humor and awkwardness to drive home his jokes. If you enjoy shows like The Rehearsal, then there’s no doubt you’ll love the one that birthed it. 

5. The Eric Andre Show (2012)

One of the craziest shows on TV, The Eric Andre Show is a sketch comedy show that aims to parody the usual late night talk show style through the use of surreal and dark comedy. Eric Andre alongside his co-host Hannibal Buress then tries to unsettle their guests with the use of sometimes aggressive or strange monologues.

In the same way as series similar to The Rehearsal, Eric Andre plays a fictional version of himself in The Eric Andre Show. The show has been described as “possibly the weirdest ten minutes on contemporary television”, and I can’t but not agree, if you don’t believe, then take a look for yourself. The Eric Andre Show airs on Adult Swim. breathe life into old shows such as these. If you enjoy series like Beef, make sure to check this out.  

Also Read: Movies About Cults

6. Trigger Warning with Killer Mike (2019)

Things get a bit serious in Trigger Warning with Killer Mike, compared to series like The Rehearsal. This show, hosted by American rapper Michael “Killer Mike” Render, explores deep seeded issues affecting America, including drugs, gang violence, racism, poverty and many other issues.

This show still finds the space to be witty and funny, helped immensely by Killer Mike’s natural charisma, as he puts himself in some really hilarious situations, like taking a group of gangsters to a bank to secure a loan to fund a new business idea. Check this out on Netflix if you get the chance.

7. Nirvanna the Band the Show (2016)

Set in Toronto, Canada, Nirvanna the Band the Show is a Canadian mockumentary series that follows a duo known as “Nirvanna the Band”, two lifelong friends and current roommates that go around the city of Toronto engaging in hijinks with the aim of getting themselves a gig at The Rivoli.

This is a feat that seems impossible at first due to their inexperience. A good mix of scripted comedy, candid scenes and improvised comedy makes Nirvanna the Band the Show one of the funniest shows to come out of Canada. The duo’s chemistry is sure to keep you entertained should you decide to watch, especially if you enjoy series similar to The Rehearsal.

8. Dog Bites Man (2006)

Dog Bites Man is styled as a parody of the usual local news broadcast. This news channel team hails from the town of Spokane, Washington. Unfortunately, the station has been struggling of late, in terms of rating, but they try to turn their fortunes around by traveling round the country to record their news broadcasts.

This show aired on Comedy Central from 2006, and was produced by DreamWorks Television. This show was one of Zach Galifianakis’ first Comedy Central roles, as he played Alan Finger, the show’s unreliable director who also doubles as a musician. If you like the style of shows like The Rehearsal, this is the kind of show for you.

9. On Cinema (2012)

Also known as On Cinema at the Cinema, On Cinema is an American comedy web series and podcast which features comedy duo Tim Heidecker and Gregg Turkington who appear as themselves in the show. The show was picked up by Adult Swim in 2015, and is premised on the duo giving reviews of films without any actual insight or useful criticism.

On Cinema, similar to shows like The Rehearsal has garnered a cult following who call themselves “Greggheads” or “TimHeads”. The show has recently moved, however, from Adult Swim to HEI Network, so you can catch up on it there if you find the premise as interesting as their fans.

10. Review (2014)

Another mockumentary series similar to The Rehearsal, Review tries to parody the reality TV show aesthetic. A critic known as Forrest MacNeil goes around participating in different life experiences, before turning around to ask his audience for their rating, judging whether the experience is good or not.

Review has been praised for its subversive and sometimes even dark humor. Andy Daly who plays Forrest MacNeil is especially lauded for his embodiment of the extremely sarcastic, self-confident and ultimately self-destructive character. Retaining a high quality from start to finish, this is one show that you can sit back, relax, and binge to your heart’s content.

11. Who is America? (2018)

Sacha Baron Cohen takes a break from playing dictators and spies, to play a collection of interesting characters all by himself, from conspiracy theorists to liberal lecturers to ex-convicts. Who is America? is all about this group of individuals who represent different parts of the political spectrum with their own unique views.  

Who is America? is a hilarious political satire filled with nihilistic humor and social commentary that can be surprisingly deep at times. Critics have however labeled it as too relevant as we are currently in a climate where politicians already “say crazy things” If you do want to see more of that regardless then check this out, especially if you’re a fan of series similar to The Rehearsal.  

12. Important Things with Demetri Martin (2009)

Money and power, Important Things with Demetri Martin is all about these themes. Created by and starring Demetri Martin who also acts as a composer on the show, this sketch-variety show contains various sketches, animated segments and stand-up comedy routines all revolving around the previously mentioned themes.

Important Things with Demetri Martin was a massive success when it aired on Comedy Central. It premiered to over 2.4 million viewers in the US, making it the best performing show at the time since Chappelle’s Show. If you want to know what the hype is all about and above all if you love shows like The Rehearsal, then treat yourself to some laughs with this one.

Honorable Mentions

Here are other shows like The Rehearsal which didn’t make the list that you can also watch:

  1. Remainder (2015)
  2. George Carlin’s American Dream (2022)
  3. Jim & Andy (2017)

When Lost aired over a decade ago, its successful narrative created a pop culture impact and changed the landscape of television. If you are a fan and want to watch shows like Lost then you can have a look at this list we made just for you.


The hugely successful television series Lost aired in 2004. The premise, as we know, deals with a group of people surviving a commercial passenger plane crash on a remote island. The show masterfully explores supernatural and sci-fi elements on this mysterious south Pacific island.

The use of cliffhangers at the end of each episode of Lost kept the viewers on the edge of their seats, desperately craving for the next episode to come. Even though it's a large ensemble cast, most of the characters receive a justifiable personal arch. Lost was inspired by the movie Castaway and became one of the most expensive pilots to be shot at the time! Lost continues to be appreciated for its originality in storytelling and dynamic character arcs. 

List of TV Shows Like Lost

  1. The Leftovers
  2. Manifest
  3. Lost Room
  4. Twin Peaks
  5. The Prisoners
  6. Battlestar Galactica
  7. The New People
  8. Flight 29 Down
  9. Fringe
  10. Alcatraz
  11. Under the Dome
  12. Dark

1. The Leftovers (2014)

IMDB ratings: 8.3/10

Cast: Carrie Coon, Justin Theroux, Amy Brenneman and Margaret Qualley

Creator: Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta

The director of Lost, Damon Lindel also created a supernatural drama series called The Leftovers. The show begins 3 years after an unexplainable global event called ‘Sudden Departure’  where almost 2 per cent of the population, nearly 140 million people, disappear. The Leftovers isn't about WHY people are gone, it's about how the ones who remain dealt with their loss, people often try to comfort themselves with dreams, angels, gods, or even death.

The Leftovers will leave you with so many questions but beyond words, you have to feel it and savour its unanswered questions to find peace. The Leftovers is an incredible television series that starts incredibly well but loses its way by the series's end. I have to say though, Carrie Coon has brilliant moments in the end. The Leftovers is so weird, fragmented and nonsensical at times that it reminds me of Lost. If you are looking for shows like Lost, I recommend that you give The Leftovers a try.

2. Manifest  (2018) 

IMDB ratings: 7.1/10

Cast: Melissa Roxburgh, Josh Dallas and J.R. Ramirez 

Creator: Jeff Rake

The Manifest is a supernatural drama show about a bunch of people who discover that they lost 5 years of their lives when they landed in New York after their aeroplane faced severe turbulence. All the people on the plane were presumed to be dead. Now, these people have to find a way to adjust themselves to a new life around their loved ones. Mild spoiler! They learn their loved ones and the rest of society is not as they left it.

I found that the show’s premise was very intriguing and the actors give a very convincing performance. The narrative details of the show, however, in my opinion, are a bit sloppy and inconsistent. The writers surely have room for improvement but their concept is incredibly thrilling. Every episode of Manifest keeps you on your toes. Manifest has completed 3 seasons up until now and continues to be on air. Manifest is a pretty good choice if you want to watch TV shows like Lost.

3. Lost Room (2006)

IMDB ratings: 8.1/10

Cast: Peter Krause, Julianna Margulies and Peter Jacobson

Creator: Christopher Leone, Laura Harkcom

This lesser-known show The Lost Room is an American Sci-fi television miniseries which only had 3 episodes of 90 mins each and no follow-up seasons. The show was based on a very unique idea where the room in question (known as the ‘Lost Room’) and the objects in the said room had supernatural powers. This strange room is set in a 1960s motel along the iconic U.S. Route 66.

One day the protagonist (Peter Krause) Joe Miller’s daughter disappears inside the room. Joe, with the help of objects present in the room, tries to find his daughter Anna (Elle Fanning). The story of Lost Room was intensely engaging. I found the direction and the actor’s performances to be absolutely brilliant. It baffles me that the creators did not return to make another short season within the same concept. If you have been searching for TV series like Lost then I can assure you that Lost Room will be worth a watch.

4. Twins Peaks (1990) 

IMDB ratings: 8.8/10

Cast: Kyle MacLachlan, Mädchen Amick, Sherilyn Fenn and David Lynch

Creator: David Lynch

David Lynch, the well-known director of weird and captivating films such as Eraserhead and Blue Velvet created an iconic show called Twin Peaks. It is a hauntingly eccentric show about the investigation of the mysterious murder of a small-town homecoming queen named Laura Palmer. Believe me, as odd as the show may seem at first, you will grow to love it, after all, it is considered to be one of the best mystery shows ever created.

With the mysteries, the supernatural elements and the list of bizarre characters, Twin Peaks has it all. In my opinion, the cinematography of the show was truly ahead of its time. Kyle’s Dale Cooper was especially entertaining. Twin Peaks’ experimental formula of the satirical soap opera is extremely unsettling yet rewarding to watch, I must warn you, it’s not for the faint-hearted!  If you are in search of TV shows like Lost then Twin Peaks won’t disappoint you.

The Prisoners (1967)

IMDB ratings: 8.5/10

Cast: Patrick McGoohan, Angelo Muscat and Geroge Markstien

Creator: Patrick McGoohan

The Prisoner centres around an unnamed British agent (Patrick McGoohan) who tries to flee his country after abruptly quitting his high-ranking government job. He is abducted and held captive in a strange ‘sea-side’ village that is isolated from the rest of the world. This village is a highly secure and monitored place filled with weird technology. There are only 17 episodes to this late 60s show but it manages to bring up such surreal surprises, it's sure to leave a great impact on the viewer.

The Prisoner’s unique concept influenced many popular shows including Lost. The creators of Lost even cited the show. I was very impressed by how ahead of its time The Prisoners proves to be. If you want to watch more shows similar to Lost the Prisoners should definitely be on your list.

6. Battlestar Galactica (2004)

IMDB ratings: 8.7/10

Cast: Katee Sackhoff, Edward James Olmos and Tricia Helfer 

Creator: Glen A. Larson

The 2004 Battlestar Galactica is a reboot of the original 1978 miniseries of the same name. Do not be mistaken by the title, the show is not related to Star Trek.  Battlestar Galactica is set in the 7th millennium AD and follows Cylons, the robot enemy of humanity that resurfaces to destroy the 12 colonies of Mankind. Only a few survive and are able to escape on ships led by a powerful warship called Battlestar Galactica. Mankind struggles to fight the Cylons and work their own political agendas and disputes while finding their long-lost 13th colony Earth.

The show is a dark, intense and gritty socio-political commentary with EPIC cinematic value. The script is especially clever and as a huge fan of sci-fi shows, this show ticks the boxes in all the right categories. When the show was released, it blew the viewers and critics away. As far as an obsessive and gripping story goes, Battlestar Galactica is one of the most similar to shows like Lost. 

7. The New People (1969)

IMDB ratings: 7.3/10

Cast: David Moses, Zooey hall and Tiffany Boiling

Creator: Larry Gordon Aaron Spelling

The New People is an American Tv series that aired only for 1 season and is focused on a couple of college students who survive a plane crash. The incident takes place while they were returning from a trip to Southeast Asia, their plane crashes on an island in the south of the Pacific ocean. 

By now this show must already be sounding a lot like Lost to you, and it surely is. The remaining group of people discover an unusual truth about the island: there’s an above-ground unused nuclear test site filled with supplies for the survivors. If you want to see more plane survival stories like Lost then The New People should definitely be on your list.

8. Flight 29 Down (2005)

IMDB ratings: 7.2/10

Cast: Allen Alvarado, Halle Hirsh and Corbin Bleu

Creator:  Stan Rowgow D. J. MacHale

The show Flight 29 Down is a drama series about a group of pre-teens/teens who are stranded on a South Pacific island after their plane crashes in a tropical storm while they were flying from an eco-adventure camping trip in Palau. The show is in many ways a younger version of the Adult-centred show Lost but sans the supernatural elements. I’d say that the show draws inspiration from the show The New People.

Flight 29 Down uses the technique of a video diary as a plot device for the viewers to keep up with the story of these children. It was very engaging to watch young intelligent characters finding their way on the island. The first two seasons of the show are quite engaging but I seemed to lose interest in its 3rd and final season. Regardless, Flight 29 Down is a really good series to watch if you want to see TV shows like Lost.

9. Fringe (2008)

IMDB ratings: 8.4/10

Cast: Anna Torv, John Noble and Joshua Jackson

Creator: J. J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman, and Roberto Orci

Fringe is a popular Sci-fi crime drama television series. It may seem like a standard procedural drama at first, but the show actually explores the parallel universe, alternate versions of people filled with crazy scientific experiments. I personally had a great time watching this show.

Fringe is actually inspired by shows like Lost, The X-files and The Twilight Zone. The 3 main characters of the show work with a special division called Fringe. There are so many brilliant twists and turns in Fringe that in my opinion, the show is at the top of its category. If you are searching for TV series like Lost, I strongly recommend you watch Fringe

10. Alcatraz (2012)

IMDB ratings: 6.9/10

Cast: Sarah Jones, George Garcia and Jonny Coyne 

Creator: Elizabeth Sarnoff, Steven Lilien, Bryan Wynbrandt

This American fiction show is based on the infamous Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary built on Alcatraz island in San Francisco Bay. The prison is now closed but once kept some of the most dangerous criminals of America. The show takes the liberty to make a show around the conspiracies of the place.

In the interesting premise we see that under unknown circumstances, 256 inmates and 46 guards of the prison disappear without a trace. Later the disappeared ones start to appear one by one without ageing a day and resume their criminal activities with no realisation of disappearance. A special government unit is dedicated to finding and putting those criminals back in prison. If you are looking for mystery shows similar to Lost, try watching Alcatraz. 

11. Under the Dome (2013)

IMDB ratings: 6.5/10

Cast: Alexander Koch and Rachelle Lefevre

Creator: Stephen King

Based on a novel written by the sci-fi legend Stephen King, Under the Dome tells the story of the residents of the fictional small town called Chester's Mill, when a huge, transparent and indestructible dome suddenly cuts them off from the rest of the world.

Now the trapped residents try to find a way to discover the truth, origin and purpose of these domes. This journey forces them into situations where they learn more about each other than they ever knew. Under the Dome may not be on the top of this list but it’s quite a decent watch if you’re looking for mystery shows similar to Lost

12. Dark (2017)

IMDB ratings: 8.7/10

Cast: Louis Hofmann, Lisa Vicari and Gina Stiebitz

Creator: Baran bo Odar, Jantje Friese

The German-language Netflix series Dark is an interesting blend of Science fiction and Mystery. Truly a compelling and mind-bending story to watch. At the beginning of Dark, many children suspiciously start disappearing in the German town of Winden. The dark past of generational mysteries of 4 families living in the town namely, Kahnwald, Nielsen, Doppler, and Tiedemann is brought to light.

After the discovery of a wormhole, the lives of the families intertwine more than one can imagine. I believe every element of the show is top-notch, especially Dark’s cinematography, which is a TRUE masterpiece. If you are looking for TV series similar to Lost then the intense and gripping story of Dark is sure to keep you engrossed.

Honourable Mentions

Here are a few TV shows like Lost that didn’t make the list, but you can check them out nonetheless: 

  1. Carnivale
  2. Yellowjackets
  3. Game of Thrones
  4. Black Mirror
  5. Flashforward
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