Today, we’re going to take a look at who we think are some of the top TV dads ever portrayed!
As an avid watcher of television, especially when I was younger, I couldn’t help but notice the father figures and how they were portrayed. In most cases, they provided the comedic gold that made the show as memorable as they were. In other occasions, they were the ones dealing with the tough situations that defined who they were and how they got there.
The following are my top 10 TV dads, in no particular order:
First off, The Simpsons is one of my all-time favorite shows, regardless of the fact that it should have ended more than a decade ago. As a young lad, I watched The Simpsons several times a day and the show was a huge factor in my development growing up.
Just the other day I was thinking about the things that I’ve learned from Homer Simpson over the years. The first things that popped into my head were when he taught Bart how to shave, his views on not wanting to go to church, and the wisdom he shares with his kids; “No matter how good you are at something in life there are about a million people that are better”.
Despite his dimwittedness, laziness, and ignorance Homer still shows that he genuinely cares deeply for his kids, regardless of the occasional physical abuse of his son Bart. He will never win father of the year, however, he’s happy with things the way they are!
Al Bundy is certainly an interesting character. He portrays the classic symptoms of a guy who was a legend back in high school but never ended up amounting to much after. In his defense, he did score 4 touchdowns in a single game back in his glory days.
Having to live a life of regrets and depression can’t be easy to deal with. That being said, his children still look up to him even though they completely understand his limitations as a father. In addition, Budd and Kelly ask their old man for advice all the time which tells me that they do have some sort of respect for their Dad still.
South Park has been on the air for a long time now and Randy Marsh has become a staple character over the past decade. I would argue that as far as being a father and mentor to his children that he falls pretty short.
Overall, the majority of the adults in South Park get dumber every season. I’m sure this is intentional, however, it adds an extra element of satire to the series.
As hilarious as Randy’s antics are he, along with most of the parents in the show, is a pretty horrible father.
Growing up I was a huge Fresh Prince fan. The series didn’t end up lasting as long as you might think, however, it was a staple for any kid growing up in the 90s. Although Uncle Phil wasn’t Will’s father he certainly was the only father figure he had in his life.
After carefully nurturing your 3 biological children for years and then having to take on another would be tough on any parent. When you throw in the fact that the new addition is from West Philadelphia, born and raised, on a playground is where he spent most of his days that’s where things got interesting/challenging.
Uncle Phil offered Will a stable home environment, mentorship, and an opportunity to change his path in life. I would consider this sort of act to be very selfless, which is why Uncle Phil made the list!
Right off the bat, I don’t care much for Family Guy, at least not after the first 3 seasons. In my opinion, Peter Griffin is just an over the top, slightly more intelligent, version of Homer Simpson. That being said, I feel like people would ask why I didn’t include him in the list had he been excluded.
As far as Peter’s ability to be a good father goes I would argue that he’s very up and down. At times, he offers very little for his kids when it comes to nurturing and mentorship and in other situations he will do anything he has to in order to make his kids happy.
At the end of the day, as long as your children respect you and you offer the necessary guidance for your children when needed you’re doing alright in the Dad department! I would argue that the dynamic of the show doesn’t allow for any of the characters to be normal so in that respect Peter is a fine Dad.
Although Ray might be a bit of a lesser known character amongst the rest of the list of TV Dads I still feel that he deserves to be acknowledged. Ray might be a bit of a drunk driving, VLT gambling, insurance frauding ex-trucker from a trailer park but he’s taught me a lot. Quite frankly, I don’t feel that the Trailer Park Boys have been the same since he left.
We all know that Ricky isn’t exactly the sharpest tool in the shed, however, he has a lot of respect for his old man. After all, he taught him how to steal barbeques, let him drive his car around the park, allowed him to grow dope, and occasionally conversed about faith and the man upstairs.
At the end of the day, Ray did the best he could considering his own faults and the fact that Ricky’s mom left when he was young. Being a single parent is extremely tough and the fact that Ricky looks up to him so much tells me that he did an okay job raising him.
I thought I’d go a little outside of the box with this one as most of my picks were fathers from comedy shows. Walter White is an interesting choice because Breaking Bad takes place when his son is a teenager and everything he does throughout the show comes across as being very out of the ordinary for Walter.
Walter’s family definitely seems to respect him, which leads me to believe that he has always been a great father and role model. That being said, he certainly left his family with a completely different opinion of him, one which will be tainted for the rest of their lives. You could argue that Walter’s life of regrets and what ifs showed his true colours. If that is the true version of Walter White then he’s actually a horrible person and father, however, that’s another conversation for another day.
First off, any father that can keep it together as well as Danny Tanner does, given that his wife died and was left with 3 young girls, deserves father of the year in my books. I have nothing but respect for single parents as being can only imagine how tough a job this would be.
Sure, Danny gets help from his brother Joey and brother in law Jesse, however, the 2 of them have no idea how to parent, at least not initially. Luckily, Danny is great at playing the role of both mom and dad as he greatly enjoys cleaning, organisation, and cooking. No, I’m not saying those are a woman’s duties, however, Full House is a pretty old show now and male roles within a family were a bit different back in the early 90s.
As with many of the above candidates, I mainly judge one’s ability to be a good father by how active they are in their children’s lives as well as how much respect their children have for them. In the case of Danny Tanner, he’s right at the top!
With only one season remaining for Game of Thrones I felt it would only be appropriate to take a look at Eddard Stark, regardless of the short time he spent on the show. Having 5 children and one “pretend” bastard would definitely make life interesting for any father. The most intriguing thing about all of Eddard’s children is how different they all turned out to be as they matured.
Coming from one of the great houses in Westeros would make you have a sense of entitlement and duty, which ironically caused the downfall of Eddard and some of his children. Other than Sansa and Bran, I would argue that the majority of fans really like the Starks. Bran used to be pretty decent but now he’s a weirdo that can’t be straightforward with anyone, however, in his defence he has seen some crazy shit.
At the end of the day, Eddard had a very impactful influence on all his children, which has been demonstrated time after time throughout the series. Each of them, other than Riccorn who doesn’t know how to zig zag, has attempted to do great things to prove their worth and properly represent the Stark name. That being said, I am happy to give Eddard Stark the Nerdy Cool Dad stamp of approval for being an excellent father!
There are a lot of people who aren’t big fans of King of the Hill and I personally feel that this is because they’ve never given it a real chance. There are many occasions in which I’ve been able to convince family and friends to start watching King of the Hill that ended up liking the show afterwards. The series has so many great characters and the situations that occur are very realistic, which is why I enjoy it so much.
Hank Hill is definitely one of the best Dads ever portrayed on TV. He’s just so down to earth, yet clueless, stubborn and anal about everything in life. These characteristics help make up the dry humour that King of the Hill such a great show. Considering how insane Hank’s old man is it’s actually surprising how normal he turned out.
As a whole, Hank is your stereotypical conservative American. He loves his country, football, trucks, fishing/hunting, propane and propane accessories, and is very traditional in his ways. That being said, his son Bobby couldn’t possibly be any different and this is one of Hank’s biggest struggles in life. Ironically, the two of them somewhat balance each other out by being so polar opposite. I’d say that Hank is a fine father and husband that is airways there for his family.