What about Coupling, League of Gentlemen, The Office, Alan Partridge?? All excellant shows all from 2002/2003
Yes, these are all good shows, but they are all BBC2 shows, and not quite in the BBC One mould of traditional sitcom. League of Gentleman is fab, but it's not really the kind of comedy the whole family gather around the telly and watch. It's a bit more risky.
I'm talking about your Open All Hours, One Foot in the Grave, Brittas Empire, Keeping Up Appearances and the like.
Having said that, I am sick to the back teeth of Last of the Summer Wine, I guess I'm hard to please. I guess the audience has moved on, the humour is more complex and as cwathen has said writers can actually get away with less these days.