Sunday, January 22, 2006

In defense of Full House. . .

Full House is a terrible show. It's got interchangeable characters (the only one who has more than one personality trait is Jesse, who has "hair" and "Elvis"), bad gags, uninspired direction and relatively poor acting (well, the three men are all pretty good, and Lori Loughlin was, at least, physically attractive).

But underneath it all is a rather unexpected undercurrent for an 80s family sitcom: Your real family is the one you make.

I could make jokes about how three single men were living together and seemed to have better relationships with each other than the women in their lives, but I don't think the show was a radical call for the recognization of homosexuals in America (as some have claimed), especially since it came from the same production house as Family Matters (which was one of the few shows in American television history to feature born-again Christians as something other than fodder for mockery -- granted, that was a terrible show too, but still. . .). But that notion at the center of the show is really kind of a radical one, and it's one that was picked up by a lot of shows in the 90s and on (especially Joss Whedon's shows, which made no bones about how the family you chose was stronger than the one you were linked to by blood).

Now, admittedly, Danny is the father of the three girls, and Jesse is their uncle (though he's not Danny's blood relation). But why is Joey there? He's just a good friend of the two other guys (and now I'm embarrassing myself).

Full House, at its core, argues that the American family is elastic enough to accommodate all types and all people.

Even those with bad Popeye impressions.

And that's why it continues to last like an irritating virus.

1 comment:

Luke said...

Full House is a masterpiece of American entertainment and anyone who disagrees, quite frankly, should be shot in the face.