Like most people who are overly obsessed with all things pop culture, the SpeakeasyENT staff would appreciate a break from real life.
More specifically, we’d be thrilled if we could hop into our favorite TV shows and blend in seamlessly with the the TV families of our choosing. Whether it’s a warm and fuzzy 90’s sitcom or a gritty fantasy drama, we’re totally there. Honestly, we’ll take any break we can from the never-ending cycle of papers and exams, but really, who wouldn’t want to be a Simpson, a Bluth or a Brady?
Even though a full immersion is beyond the impossible, here are our picks for our new fictional families.
The Tanners, “Full House” | Carina Belles
I started watching “Full House” because my 80-year-old great-grandmother told me she wanted me to start watching some “nice, family shows.” Apparently she was not a fan of the sassy attitudes on “Rugrats.”
So I consented to this concept of watching “real people” on TV instead of cartoons. Real life, how boring.
That’s when I realized “Full House” is pretty much the opposite of real life. The Tanners live in some twisted alternate universe where houses in San Francisco are big enough to fit nine people. Nine! And they magically had a basement in freakin’ California. Don’t even try to tell me that house wouldn’t cost at least $10 million in real life. Is that what the Beach Boys pay you, Uncle Jesse?
But it’s not just their otherworldly wealth that makes me want to be a Tanner. They just loved each other, so much. Every problem, from smoking cigarettes in the bathroom to stealing a rad sweater, was wrapped up with some classy jazz horns and a hug. And everything was always so clean (thanks, Danny). I don’t even care how I’d have to degrade myself to join: I would marry Danny. I would even be Kimmy Gibbler. Just keep me away from Mr. Woodchuck and I’d be fine.
The Crawleys, “Downton Abbey” | Blake Tan
There are so many ridiculous Anglophiles in America today, but I am not one of these people. Like any true American (born and/or bred), I’ll take my hamburgers, hot dogs and coffee over meat pies, black pudding and tea. We thrashed those sorry Brits two hundred years ago; it’s absolutely insane that there is a portion of our population obsessed with all things British. This is America, gosh darn it!
However, I do have to concede that British television is superior. The British “Skins” is much better than the American version and “The Office,” one of our most highly acclaimed shows (until season 4), is still just a knock-off of its British parent. And if you haven’t caught “Downton Abbey” on PBS, then you are truly missing out.
I would abandon both my place and current era for turn-of-the-twentieth-century England and a place at Downton as a member of the Crawley family, likely as a distant cousin of some sort. It helps that this decision means joining a wealthy, influential family of which I could be heir to, but that’s not the only reason. The Crawleys have the social connections to put me in relative comfort for the rest of my life, but maybe I’d pull a Lady Sybil and get bored with the aristocratic ease and try to do something to make the world a better place. Or I could just lay back and enjoy a time when the sun never set on the British Empire. The best upside is that my cousins are all beautiful, astounding women whose companionship (and weird sexual tension that goes along with it) would at least make things interesting.
This is twentieth century, aristocratic England; marrying a cousin to keep the money in the family is the price you have to pay for the luxury of being the heir of Downton.
The Matthews, “Boy Meets World” | Jayme Pollock
If you were to ask me what my favorite television show growing up was, it would take less than a second for me to eagerly reply, “Boy Meets World!” The show follows one Cory Matthews, a funny and upbeat adolescent, and his journey into adulthood.
Though there are many compelling aspects to this quintessential 90s sitcom, such as the witty one-liners and colorful array of characters, something that has always struck me was the cohesiveness of Cory’s family, the Matthews. Parents Alan and Amy Matthews serve as a focal guiding point in the lives of their three children, (four, if you count the obligatory late season baby most sitcoms have) Eric, Cory and Morgan (What ever happened to Morgan?). Both are very nurturing and loving toward their kids, yet they aren’t afraid to discipline them when needed.
Like Cory, older brother Eric is seen struggling to find his way through life. The relationship between him and Cory is a typical brotherly one, filled with jealousy, arguments and noogies, but it is clear that they remain loyal and protective of each other throughout the seasons. The Matthews family was always there for each other, even when times were tough. They seemed to be the only normal family in the cast, as Cory’s friends Shawn and Topanga grew up with very different (re: unstable) home lives. I know whenever I watched “Boy Meets World,” part of me wished I was part of the Matthews family for their healthy and idyllic relationships. And so I could live next door to the one and only Mr. Feeny.
The Starks, “Game of Thrones” | Christian Law
The Stark family of Winterfell sure is a pessimistic group, what with all that “winter is coming” nonsense. But you know who else is a big, fat pessimist? Me. Literally. Sure, being one of them Stark boys doesn’t mean I get to get into wacky adventures with the pedophile who owns the local bike shop, but it does increase my chances of death by a good percentage. Who wouldn’t want to live a life of adventure like that?
Look at all the shenanigans I could get into: I could become a mopey cripple, perhaps be a mopey, motherless bastard, or even lose my head over some honor. So sure, maybe my life wouldn’t be quite as cozy as living in a Cosby sweater, but who needs the comforts of the upper middle class when Winterfell awaits? The benefits of exploring a whole new world far outweigh the inevitable death that will most likely be unnecessarily brutal. Also, Westeros has boobs.
The Huxtables, “The Cosby Show” | Conor Morris
Full discretion: if Bill Cosby was ever actually my dad I would probably die instantly and transcend to a higher plane of existence.
That’s one of the reasons why I wish I lived in the Huxtable household for at least some of my life. I mean, think about it. You could wake up every day to a fresh bowl of jell-o pudding and a new lesson about life, like about how drugs are bad or that you should never trust somebody named “Cockroach.” Not only that, but the Huxtable family’s strong moral values are a hard thing to come by in this ever-changing world—especially when trying to raise a metric crap-ton of children in Brooklyn while the patriarch refuses to talk and act like a normal human being.
Even as weird as Bill Cosby is, and as much as I love my normal family, I still think it would be pretty fantastic being brought up to understand that college sweaters are indeed the height of fashion. Plus, I would be living in a kickass Brooklyn flat with a doctor/lawyer parental combo.
Oh, and did I mention that Bill Cosby would be my dad?
“Koo koo kachu, you knocked that girl up? Zip-zop zoobity-bop! You’re grounded!”
Which TV family would you give up your real life for? Let us know in the comments or @SpeakeasyENT, we’d love to hear it!