The family sitcom has been a staple of television since the beginning starting with The Goldbergs, tv’s first family sitcom and specifically speaking family sitcom ever made back in 1949. (not to be confused with the current The Goldbergs sitcom on ABC). Since then tv has been filled with lovable, charming, and hilarious tv families. I wanted to list my top twenty five choices of all time favorite sitcom families from both comedies that I simply adore and who I also feel embody a real family as much as possible due to the genuine and believable chemistry they all had together. Now, family isn’t all about blood, it’s ultimately about the genuine connection and love a group can have for each other, so there are specific families I put in that were non traditional families but still very much a family.
25. The Baxters. That’s So Raven.
There was just something about the Baxter family that felt so genuine and real. They just looked and felt like a family we all know and they were hilariously funny to boot.
24. The Tanners\Katsopolis\Gladstone Family. Full House.
We all know and love the Tanner family and their extended members from the golden 90’s era of family tv. The Full House family were the captains of the TGIF Friday night line up on ABC and we were all treated to some classic cheesy but warm and funny family moments.
23.The Campbell\Landry family. Sister, Sister.
The twins and their folks are certainly one of television’s most unique families. The whole separated at birth, adopted by two separate single parents thing can get a bit confusing, but this unlikely brood were a tight knit and wacky bunch that we all came to love.
22. The Hills. King of The Hill.
The Hills are the pride of Arlen, Texas. An unusual family but a loving and hilarious one at that. This animated family felt as real as any live action one and it’s because underneath the weirdness and emotional restraint between them all, there was a deep love and warmth that made us love them.
21. The Rocks. Everybody Hates Chris.
Chris Rock had an interesting childhood, and his family life provided us the most insane, hilarious as well as heartfelt moments in Everybody Hates Chris. The Rock family had their issues, but this was a tight knit family that made us laugh hysterically and cry big crocodile tears, very much like any real family.
20. The Kyles. My Wife and Kids.
The Kyles weren’t your “typical family”. This was a family that had many crazy hijinks going on in that house, but they were also a loving and close family. Michael and Jay were definitely hands on parents and didn’t mind going to the extreme to steer their kids down the right path in a hilariously over the top way.
19. The Harpers. Mama’s Family.
The Harper family may be dysfunctional, they may be crazy, and they may be the type of family you’d hate to see at any public function… But, they were also hilariously funny and underneath it all loyal and loving towards one another on occasion. Mama definitely had her work cut out for her with this crazy brood.
18. The Drummond\Jackson Family. Diff’Rent Strokes.
A totally unique but lovable family that gave us plenty of laughs and plenty of heart. Not many tv families looked like the Drummond\Willis clan, but that’s what made this brood so special. It warmed our hearts when Mr. Drummond gave his patented parental wisdom and laughed ourselves silly at Arnold’s patented question: “Whatchoo talkin’ bout, Willis?”. Good times and bad were had at the Drummond household and we were there for it all.
17. The Taylors. Home Improvement.
Before Tim Allen had a wife and three girls in Last Man Standing he had a wife and three boys. The Taylors were your classic suburban family, only with far more at home accidents than any other one in the country. We were treated to many laughs and love with the Taylors, and their genuine chemistry with one another made them feel like an actual family.
16.The Lopezes. George Lopez.
The Lopezes had many ups and downs throughout the series, but through it all they made each other laugh and stuck with each other. They weren’t exactly the Cleavers or the Bradys with their often dark senses of humor and all the craziness in their lives, but they were a family that we all came to love and relate to as well as have a good time laughing at.
15.The Winslows. Family Matters.
The Winslows were a tight knit and loving family, who made us fall in love with them as well as laugh with and at them every Friday night back in the 90's. The family went through the typical ups and downs of life, as well as the not so typical with the constant presence of the wacky, annoying neighbor Steve Urkel who very much inserted himself into the clan. But through it all they had each other.
14. The Bankses\Will Smith. The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.
They may have been different in class, but Will and his rich Uncle, Aunt and cousins became one family, and a loving, hilarious one at that. Over the show’s six years the Banks clan has had many iconic moments, and we were right there with them laughing, crying… Carlton dancing etc.
13.The Keatons. Family Ties.
There were a lot of differences between the Keaton clan: Politically, personality and in quite a few other ways. But what they ultimately had in common was their deep and everlasting love and devotion for each other. This was a totally believable and lovable family, so much so that in the 1980’s they were considered America’s second favorite family after The Huxtables, and Michael Gross’ Steven Keaton was knighted as America’s second favorite dad after Cliff Huxtable.
12. The Simpsons. The Simpsons.
Our favorite Yellow family has been around forever. They’re definitely a family that everyone around the world knows and loves, and that’s most likely the main reason why they won’t go away anytime soon. The family was dysfunctional as all get out, but there were plenty of sweet moments that proved that despite it all, the Simpsons are one of tv’s most loving and adorable families.
11. The Huxtables. The Cosby Show.
The Huxtables made television history back in 1984 when they gave the nation a type of family they hadn’t seen before at that point.
10. The Cranes. Frasier.
The Crane men and extended family members Daphne Moon, Roz Doyle and of course Eddie were a quirky little family, but a tight knit and hilarious one at that. Martin Crane and his two sons couldn’t be more different in almost every single way imaginable, but over the course of the series the three men found some common ground and grew closer. Frasier gave us many iconic and hysterically funny moments, and the most memorable usually involved the Crane family’s hijinks.
9. The Wilkersons. Malcolm In The Middle.
The Wilkersons were broke, dysfunctional, insane and as weird as they come, but nevertheless this was a family that would do anything for each other when it came down to it. Malcolm in The Middle gave us a classic tv family that were far away from The Cleavers and The Huxtables; a family far more closer to our actual families in real life only much funnier.
8. The Jeffersons\Willises. The Jeffersons.
The Jeffersons and their mighty big extended family gave us plenty of laughs and heart over the years. There were plenty of memorable fights, laughter and more fights in the Jeffersons’ apartment over the years that we all could both recognize in our own families and laugh at for the genuine hilarity of it all. George, Weezy, Florence, Lionel, Jenny, Ralph, Tom and Helen Willis, Mr. Bentley and Mother Jefferson were very much adopted into our own families as we watched.
7. The Bunkers. All In The Family.
Who didn’t love the Bunkers? Archie, Edith, Gloria and Mike were all characters that we recognize in our own families, especially the bigoted and hot tempered patriarch Archie Bunker. All in The Family was the first sitcom in history to put reality and all its warts on the television screen for us to see, and for the first time people saw the type of arguments, conversations and characters that they had, had in their own homes. We laughed and cried with that zany Bunker clan.
6.The Conners. Roseanne.
And speaking of families we all knew in our own lives, The Conner family of Lanford, Illinois ranks high on that list. The house was a mess, the parents both gained and lost jobs, the kids were bratty and argumentative, the family constantly traded wisecracks, and ate like pigs at the dinner table. Just like your family and mine. The Conners seen a lot of highs and lows in their day but they got through it all with laughter and yes, love.
5.The Hecks. The Middle.
I have to say, after all these years watching family sitcoms The Hecks are the tv family I most recognize and identify with when it comes to my own family. They never got anything fixed, struggled with bills, argued with each other constantly, but also enjoyed each other’s company, made each other laugh and picked each other up when they were down. The Heck family gave us all the aspects of family life and they were also hysterically funny while doing it.
4. The Evanses. Good Times.
The Evans clan were often dealt the worst of circumstances in the projects but they never let anything that life had to throw at them get them down because they had each other. They laughed, cried and fought with and for each other. The first black family of tv represented with pride and with love. The family is so tight that when we lost James the family felt incomplete and wasn’t nearly as strong without the father figure, but nevertheless the family, like always, endured.
3. The Bundys. Married… With Children.
The Bundys are truly among the dynasty of tv families. They’re crude, rude and don’t eat a lot of food, but Al, Peggy, Kelly and Bud sure make us laugh like crazy and somehow relate to their absurd dysfunction and irreverence. Al Bundy was truly the every man who came home from his crappy job to his nagging wife and kids who didn’t appreciate him. This made him a perfect tv representation of every working class father and husband in not only America but the entire world. Despite all the insults and backstabbing, when it came down to it the Bundys had each other’s backs and actually did really love each other.
2. The Golden Girls. The Golden Girls.
How does the Golden Girls count as a family, you ask? Well, if the definition of family is sharing a life with a group of people: fighting, bickering, laughing, loving, defending and confiding in one another on a regular basis then Dorothy, Blanche, Rose and Sophia most certainly count. They were a unique family that came together through a want ad and stayed together because after losing husbands and their children being all grown up they were all each other had. Who didn’t want to visit this family for a slice of cheesecake and to laugh yourself silly at their wild antics?
- The Barones. Everybody Loves Raymond.
The Barones were truly a special type of family. What makes them so hilarious and so lovable is how believable they were as a family unit with all the arguing, bantering and annoyance that all families have, but it was ultimately the love they had for each other that kept them together. We all got a Ray, a Debra, a Robert, a Frank, and especially a Marie in our own family or we’re one of them, which is why they’re simply the best.
’Til next time, folks! Thanks for dropping by… Now stop fooling around and spend some time with your own family for peep’s sake.