The Best Sitcom Characters Of All-Time
There is little more comforting than lounging on the sofa, and binging your favorite sitcoms.
What ultimately makes sitcoms so comforting, in addition to the clever writing and improbably affordable apartments, are the characters.
Why Friends continues to gain a new legion of fans, even nearly 20 years after its finale, is the fact that those watching often want Monica, Chandler, Rachel, Ross, Joey and especially Phoebe to actually be their friends.
Or wish their own friends' dynamic was more like that iconic sextet.
Indeed, people would be much less hesitant to show up for work if they knew The Office's Jim or Pam would be waiting for them, or think that their school days might have been more pleasurable if taught by Abbot Elementary's Janine Teagues.
Characters who are so lovable, it almost breaks our hearts that they aren't real.
Redditor thierryadams was eager to hear who people considered the best sitcom character of all time, leading them to ask:
"Who is the best sitcom character of all time?"
The Dad We All Wish We Had
"Hal from 'Malcolm in the Middle'."- TerriblyAverage1malcolm in the middle ifc GIFGiphy
Someone Get That Lady a Vodka Rocks... Or A Piece Of Toast...
"She stole every scene she was in, which is both a testament to how well the character was written and Jessica Walter’s performance."- PobBrobert
"It's Always Sunny" When They're Around.
"Charlie Kelly!"- SuperDuperCatman
"Frank Reynolds."- Pumpkin-tits-NYCit's always sunny sunnyfxx GIF by It's Always Sunny in PhiladelphiaGiphy
"But He Already Did Something Today"...
"Titus Andromedon from 'Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt'."- cherry_blsm00
Especially When He Makes A "huge mistake"...
"Gob Bluth."- BrushGoodDar
Threatening Our Grasp On Reality
"Proof that less is more."
“'Somebody making soup?'”- AussieDuckMancreed bratton television GIFGiphy
The Boss Of Our Dreams
"Captain Holt"- Cabbiecar1001
If Only For His Hair!
"Maurice Moss, 'IT Crowd'."- SalsaYogurt
One Only Hopes Our Future Will Involve Him
"Bender B. Rodriguez."
"Remember that scene in Kill Bill where Bill says Clark Kent is Superman's impression of humans?"
"Clark had to act like all the other humans in order to blend into human society."
"Now apply that logic to Bender."
"He was made by humans to be able to function and relate to people in a human world."
"The humans made him in their own image and he's the most self-centered, amoral, insecure, emotional train wreck on Earth."
"He is what we secretly fear about our own nature."- blakethegr8swag futurama GIFGiphy
One could say it's their questionable grasp of reality that makes sitcoms so enjoyable.
If Will Truman were a real-life New York attorney, there's no way he would have been chronically single for seven years.
Far-fetched as some of their premises may be, however, our favorite sitcom characters can almost be viewed as the friends who never disappoint us.
As they're always guaranteed to make us laugh and put a smile on our faces.
Even when they break our hearts.
Seriously, how could Nathan do that to Ted Lasso?!?!?!
No matter how positive each of us may try to be, there are moments when it's easy to feel hopeless about how the world looks.
Some have become fairly certain of society's demise because of a specific event they witnessed.
Redditor FlyingStudio22 asked:
"What's the best example of 'Welp, society is f**ked'?"
Work Comes First
"When I lost three of my closest family members to a drunk driver accident, and I couldn’t get time off work to plan and go to their funeral because, 'you need to find coverage and if nobody will cover for you… you have to come in!' Yeah, none of my coworkers wanted to cover my shift. This happened very recently also."
"After I posted this, a lot of people asked if I went to the funeral. I did, and I’m so happy I did. It really helped me find some closure and take some time with my family. I’m going to request time off to see the motherf**ker who hit them get sentenced, and if they won’t let me go… I simply won’t show up again.)"
"(I also politely told my manager to f**k off and that he can fire me if he isn’t happy with my decision to attend… still not fired.)"
The Story That Should Have Been
"I saw a news story of a high school student paying off a teacher's student loans."
Student Loan Problems
"There was a game show where the contestants played for the show paying off their student loans. If that doesn’t scream, 'we’re f**ked,' I don’t know what does."
Poor Medical Care
"Pretty much any ER in any major city. Spend a few days in one and see just how incredibly f**ked up a significant percentage of the population is."
"I think about my friends, family, and colleagues, and I cannot name a single person who does not have a malady or six. Depression, anxiety, stomach ulcers, heart issues, etc."
The Price to Pay
"How people with illnesses have to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars just to survive. I swear, it's so messed up. 'Oop, you don’t have enough money for a heart transplant that will save your life?… well, not our problem, say goodbye to your family.'"
"Like, if you don’t have money, they will let you die. Literally. And then they’ll be like, 'There's nothing we can do about it, sorry.' YES, YES THERE IS. This is someone’s life and you’re gonna let them die because they don’t have enough money? It really shows you how people don’t care about other people's lives."
The Rent is Too Darn High
"Stagnation of wages since the 1980s combined with the increased cost of living in the 400% mark in key areas such as rent and food."
"Future's pretty bleak."
"2/3 of wealth created throughout the pandemic went to the top 1%. Income inequality is going to be the downfall of civilization eventually."
"People mindlessly believing propaganda that is easily disproven by a ten-second google search."
"The fish fillets are getting smaller, but staying the same price."
"If ocean ecosystems are no longer able to sustain consistently harvesting large fish, that shows deep problems that cannot be covered up. Couple that with the cost of the poorest, staple foods increasing while wages stagnate, and you have a perfect recipe for societal collapse."
"People are kept docile by all governments with bread and circuses. Well alas, the bread is getting more expensive and has for decades, while the circuses kinda suck and are rapidly going bankrupt."
"I have been recently re-reading Asimov's 'Foundation,' and his discussion of how powerful empires collapse through a gradual shrinking of ambition and will until all that the smartest are trying (and failing) to achieve is the maintenance of the status quo was rather disconcerting. Sound familiar to anyone else working in the public sector?"
"When I saw how everyone reacted to the pandemic outbreak. Turning health issues into political ones. That basically cinched it."
Lack of Priorities
"I know the exact moment I realized this. It was during the republican debate in 2015. I forget who made a comment about trump's hand size in a suggestive manner, but Trump responded by saying there's no problem there."
"Think about that, during a presidential debate, arguing about literal d**k size, and no one batting an eye. That's when I knew."
"I knew when they booed McCain simply for saying Obama was a decent family man."
"The fact that human rights are 'negotiable.'"
All of the Above
"gestures broadly at everything all the time"
Many of the points made here are deeply troubling, and it makes sense that some people would view them as signs for societal doom.
Unfortunately, it's all about perspective, and what may be perceived as terrible today may seem slight in comparison tomorrow.
Generally in the eyes of many young students, educators are inspiring individuals who are passing on their wisdom to prepare the future leaders of the world.
But as with all humans, they have flaws. The difference that sets certain teachers apart are the ones who maintain their professionalism and don't let their deeply-shelved insecurities interfere in the classroom.
And then there are the kinds of teachers who were just never meant to be in an academic setting at all and are eventually dismissed for various indiscretions.
Curious to hear examples of educators who fall in this category, Redditor CynicalHomicider3248 asked:
"Why did that teacher get fired from your school?"
These teachers couldn't be trusted to handle fundraisers.
Pocketing School Funds
"Embezzled something like 20,000 from the school field trips she was in charge of scheduling for the whole school. Overcharged the students but only deposited the amount for what the trip cost and kept the rest. Did it for decades. Not only fired but was charged and found guilty. Not sure how much time she was given."
Partners In Crime
"Had one of those at my HS. The lady worked in the main office, also coached cheer and flag squads. I never heard what she did, exactly, but it was a big chunk of money she embezzled over time. Iirc, she got found out because her husband, the Ag teacher, allegedly got a student pregnant. So when everything about that came out, her husband told everyone what she had been doing. The whole family was pretty messed up."
"She made us pay $5 for homeworks that hasn't been done."
It took one bad decision for these educators to be shown the door.
A Violent Impulse
"He was the gym teacher for over 30 years. He volunteered to stand near the trash cans during lunch every day to ensure the students dumped their food and gave their finished trays to the cafeteria workers in an organized way. He had done this for decades. Even when my father attended that junior high."
"One day, a student decided to toss her entire tray in the trash instead of dumping the contents and giving it to the cafeteria work. He removed the tray from the trash and gave it back to her. She threw a carton of chocolate milk at his face, close range. He responded by punching her in the eye."
Demonstration Gone Awry
"He was actually just a substitute. Left quicker than he arrived. He told our class he practices judo so one student told him to show a move. The move he chose to demonstrate on this student in front of the class was a sleeper hold. Put that motherducker right to sleep and got charged with assaulting a minor."
Love Found A Way
"He was asked to resign because he was engaged to one of the other teachers. They’re still happily married and he made more money as a carpenter. Great guy."
There are those who are naturally fit to be a teachers. These individuals don't fit that category.
"History teacher never really taught history. Sometimes he'd just yell at the kids in class. It got worse when his son died in desert storm. Then he spent half the class time crying. Assistant principal had to take over one too many days. Eventually he stopped coming to school and we never saw him again."
"My Dad subbed (teacher) for a while after he retired. He got personally escorted out of a school once for doing 'black magic' for 5th graders….. he did a card trick…. And he was in the process of cutting a sheet of paper in a way that makes it possible to walk thru it. He is currently banned for life from Deer Park public schools in WA."
"Side note: when I went to visit once we went to a bar. The bartender said, 'Holy sh*t, it’s [insert full name] Dude! I named my bong after you, Mr. [name]!' I guess he really influenced the youth 🤷🏼♂️"
Alarming Show & Tell
"Had a samurai sword in his trunk, proceeded to unsheathe it during a fire drill because his lineup location was next to his car and show people…"
"The best part was that after he got fired people posted flyers around the school of him photoshopped with a samurai outfit with a caption of 'free my homie samurai so and so.'”
The problem with the US public school system is the fact that educators are grossly underpaid for the amount of work and dedication they set aside for students.
It could be one of the main reasons why there seems to be a shortage of qualified teachers.
If the pay grade was at a respectable level, schools in the country might have more teachers who take their positions seriously and are less likely to lack common sense since they know that the needs of their students will always come first.
Many folktales and fairy stories began owing to unusual things sailors might have spotted out at sea.
Mermaids, sea serpents, lost colonies, the list goes on and on.
Sadly (or thankfully) there is no photographic evidence of monstrous sea life, such as giant squids or dinosaur-like sharks.
But that doesn't mean that sailors and people stationed out at sea haven't seen some unusual things.
Things they still have trouble explaining to this day, and will never forget for the rest of their lives.
"Sailors of reddit,what's the most unusual thing you've experienced while at sea?"
Don't Even Want To Know How It Got There...
'Out of a submarine periscope, we saw a fully inflated, pink, unicorn floaty toy."
"We were very far from any civilization."- mbreinichblow up summergram GIF by SummerfestGiphy
The Ordinary And The Extraordinary
"We were sailing (330ft. ship) from the North Sea to west Africa."
"I was off shift and sleeping."
"I woke up and for some reason decided to go up to the bridge, which is something I usually never did when I could be sleeping or eating."
"It was night, so all the lights were off on the bridge save for a few red ones, and I noticed how bright it was outside."
"I went over to starboard and the f*cking white cliffs of Dover were completely illuminated by a full moon."
"Just beaming moonlight."
"It was one of the most amazing things I've ever seen."
"Of course the mate on duty was English and was nonchalantly like 'yeah, that's Dover'."
"This one isn't me, but a Welsh guy I met in the Caribbean."
"He had done a few transatlantic trips in a small sailboat so had tons of ocean experience."
"A big storm caught him, with huge rolling waves."
"He decided to heave to to ride it out (basically using your sail and the rudder to put the brakes on and give yourself a smoother ride)."
"He was in the cockpit and was riding up one of the bigger waves."
"The next part is wild."
"He swears to god on his grandmother's grave that a giant whale just below the surface cruised up the wave beside him and just stared straight at him."
"He describes looking into this animal's huge eyeball, just looking back at him, for what was probably a couple seconds but he said felt like minutes, from a few feet away."
"He's never lied or really even exaggerated otherwise, so I believe him."
"Can you imagine seeing that?"
"Sometimes I really miss being at sea."- Zebulon_Vblue whale sea GIF by Monterey Bay AquariumGiphy
"Flying fish timed a wave right and jumped out the water and through an open hatch directly into the galley."
"Freeboard was like 7 metres."
"The chefs sh*t themselves haha."- BassEvers
Not A Sight Anyone Wants To See
"I was on a run between California and Hawaii, and I was out on deck doing rounds on deck equipment, checking oil levels etc."
"I saw one of those free fall lifeboats just hanging out in the distance and was like wtf."
"I called the bridge, they said a ship accidentally dropped their lifeboat a few years ago and now it turns up from time to time."
"Was glad to know no one was on it, but it gave me a brief scare."- thecactuswrench
"Lots of crazy little things, but I was on a ship that lost a man overboard in the Atlantic."
"Reports were that a life saver was thrown immediately after he fell in, the lookout said he saw a swell overtake him as he was going toward the life saver."
"And that was it."
"We searched for hours, never seeing a single sign."
"Search lights in the water."
"Dark shaped swimming past them.'
"Makes you realize how small we are in nature."
"Still think about it to this day."- ConstantTheory255
A Literal Whale Of A Tale
"Was sailing off the coast of the big island Hawaii in February."
"We were mostly interested in fishing since the wind had died down."
"There were no other boats around that were visible and it was a very calm and peaceful day."
"Now often you'll see Humpback whales breaching in Feb and you can also hear them singing if you are underwater."
"That is cool enough, but this encounter was awesome."
"I was baiting a hook, and suddenly on the starboard side of the boat a pod of about 20 melon head whales comes up right beside the boat and they just start staring us down."
"I lean over and this one dude moves a little closer and just keeps moving his head so he can eye me up and down."
"They all just kept staring at us with an expression of 'WTF are these? Hoo interesting, don't look like they can swim at all'."
"They eyed us at close quarters for about 5 min and then just took off."
"The weirdest part of the encounter was the close eye contact I had with the first whale was definitely two individuals sizing each other up."
"Best part of the whole day."- CalEPygousOcean Wildlife GIF by BBC AmericaGiphy
A Unique And Magical Experience
"Was gently sailing down the northeast cost of New Zealand heading into Auckland at about 2-3 am."
"I was on watch and the other crew member was asleep below."
"It was a pitch black night, no moon, and the sea was very still so as soon as you look overboard all you saw was black!"
"Eventually you saw stars but it was impossible to distinguish sea from sky."
"As I was keeping a watch I saw what I thought was a shooting star just MUCH bigger!"
"It came again and again agin until there were about 30 of these shining glittering trails shooting around the boat."
"It was very disconcerting and it took me a few minutes to click what was happening."
"We had sailed into a patch of luminescence while dolphins were swimming around the boat planing on both it and our wake."
'I had not noticed them due to it being so dark!"
"For something so simple it was a very moving almost spiritual experience and it will remain one of my all time most fondest memories!"- Smh_nz
Never Leave Port If You're Not Prepared To Do So
"French Navy navigator here."
"A few years back, went underway from Toulon on a high sea patrol ship for a routine patrol."
"The sea was very rough out of the roadstead, coming from the west, which was completely contradictory with what our weather briefs were indicating."
"Captain decided to go ahead nonetheless."
"We took a heading towards the east to enter Hyères Bay, when we entered in the pass, sh*t went down."
"I was outside, starboard wing of the bridge to take bearings when the ship took a 35 degrees list on starboard."
"If I had held my arm out, it would have been underwater."
"I held on the compass for dear life, because going overboard in that weather would have probably meant death."
"Needless to say, I sh*t myself.
"When the ship leveled, my boss went out to check if I was still there, and ordered me to go below to check how bad the damage was to some of our gear."
"I went, and when I was at the main deck, the ship took a 43 degrees list to starboard."
'I was then blessed with the horrific sight of a washing machine that was strapped in a room by the hull on portside punch a hole through the bulkhead and go straight to starboard WITHOUT touching the deck."
"Also, a lot of the firefighting equipment (axes, hoses, pumps...) was just flying all over the place, with guys from the security department desperately trying to catch it and fasten it."
"At that point, we had entered the bay and had better weather."
"We had lost electricity in the bridge and CIC, so the captain decided to wait in the bay for the weather to calm down."
'When it did the next day, we pulled back into port for repairs."
"This little escapade resulted in a few bruises, the electrical network of the bridge and CIC being badly damaged (the guys that were supposed to strap down sh*t didn't do it correctly and got punished) and for me, a reminder of my mortality."
"On a more positive note, I once saw a stork land on our 100mm turret after a sandstorm off Libya, and stay there for several hours."
"Also, we had a couple of sperm whales with a calf swimming alongside, for almost a day off Ivory Coast."
"When you see that kind of stuff, it doesn't matter if you are 3 months in or 20 years in."
"You feel like a kid again."- Hans_Von_Seemann
"My area occasionally gets phytoplankton blooms."
"If you're boating at night and sail into a bloom, the wake of your boat will suddenly start glowing blue."
"It's pretty darn bright, easily seen with the naked eye, and appears out of nowhere."
"One minute you're sailing in complete darkness, the next you're in glowing water."- MyNameIsRay·climate change animation GIFGiphy
Life out on the open sea is unpredictable, and sometimes scary.
But those brave enough to venture into it, always return with a story to tell.
"The road to Hell is paved with good intentions."
An aged old proverb reflecting on when people perform what they think are well-meaning, helpful acts, but in reality, only worsen a bad situation.
A day seldom goes by when people won't notice an example of this, either on the news, in the book they're reading, or simply walking down the street.
This could be anything from someone making promises to help out, but never delivering on them, to saving money for a less expensive cleaner, which turns out to radiate toxic fumes, resulting in the building being closed for an indefinite length of time.
Ideas which might seem good in theory, but are impractical, illogical, or even harmful, in practice.
"The road to hell is paved with good intentions," what is a real life example of this?"
Controlling Erosion By Causing Erosion...
"The introduction of Kudzu for erosion control."
"It has become invasive and girdles and kills plant life above ground without establishing proper roots, therefore causing soil erosion."- Aldous_Hoaxley
When Honesty Is NOT The Best Policy...
"Once upon a time, I found a wallet on the beach."
"Having lost my own more than once, and not having it returned to me, I am aware that it is a stressful life event."
"So, my first thought was how to return it quickly."
"Looking through the contents, the owner was from out of state and there was no contact information other than the drivers license."
"Aside from that, only a few credit cards and some cash."
"Not knowing how long ago the owner had left, I thought let's just sit here for a while and maybe he will return looking for it since it is the first thing I would do."
"After a couple hours of fun and sun we needed to move on."
"My next best idea was to turn it into the local police station which we found easily enough just down the street."
"What I thought would be a quick in and out turned into a full on interrogation session during which I was, at one point, accused of theft/robbery."
"It was a bizarre experience, to say the least, which wasted an hour of our day."- notawhingymillenial
Think Carefully About Where You Donate...
"The Unexpected Consequences of your donations."
"TOMS Shoes, a company that pledged to donate a pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair purchased."
"Turns out that the company's donations disrupted local shoe markets in developing countries, putting local shoe makers out of business and creating a dependency on foreign donations."
"Additionally, the shoes donated by TOMS were not always appropriate for the local climate or culture and were not always of the same quality as the shoes being sold."
"Reportedly, they have ended up in landfills."- EditorNo2545
Not Helping Anyone If You Can't Adequately Care For THem
"Trying to rescue too many cats."- Tackybabe
When One Crisis Leads To Another
"Haiti did not have cholera."
"A disastrous earthquake hit Haiti in 2010, after the earthquake humanitarian forces from the UN arrived to help, and the Nepalese contingent reintroduced Cholera to Haiti."
"This epidemic has since infected approximately 850,000 people and killed over 10,000."- scootarded
It's The Only Way They'll Learn How To Solve Them
"Sheltering your kid from every possible problem."- Easywood
"Those parents who solve all their kids issues and don't make them 'stress' about consequences of their own actions."
"Their kids just turn into inept and entitled adults who still act 15 for decades and not only have a harder life for themselves but make life miserable for everyone around them too."
"Yes it's bad to go too far the other way, raising a child is a balancing act."
"I get that, but ignoring a child isn't usually from good intentions while spoiling them often is and that was the prompt."
"If this sounds like it happened to you, I promise you that you can get yourself out of the cycle."
"It sucks and it hurts and it's unpleasant, but you can do it if you want to."
"Get ready to fail, and then keep trying anyway."
"Persistence will be a new skill, and you will be bad at it."
"And that's okay."
"You didn't do this to yourself, you don't need to feel shame."
"Digging yourself out however is something you'll be doing yourself, and you can take pride in every step you make it the right direction."- EisConfused
When Some People Just Can't Be Helped
"My neighbor who is supposedly getting evicted soon."
"Basically she saw young drug addicts (30 year olds) as people she could change for the better."
"She’d find them somewhere and bring them home."
"Evidently the idea was that she could show them a warm apartment and good food and they would realize the error of their ways and change for the better."
"That or a safe place to do their drugs."
"We had a door code so they could come in and knock on her door until she answered."
"It was a constant stream of strange people going in and out of her room all night long."
"I figured it wasn’t my problem, people can do what they want if they aren’t hurting anyone else."
"But then three of the men decided to take advantage of her because it’s not like she could physically kick them out herself, and she wouldn’t call the police."
"These are people who don’t want to change, they like their lifestyle and she gave them an upgrade."
"We are pretty sure they are doing meth in there."
"They come back at 1:30 am and either snort something or smoke something that from the hallway smells like cat pee or paint thinner."
"Then they scream bloody murder, throw things, and have domestics until 11 am, like clockwork."
"Police can’t actively go into the room and even people on the top floor are calling them."
"Landlord and management is doing his best to get them out but that’s a lengthy process."
"They disabled the door code but they are still getting in."
"Even the girl has been taken to the hospital for overdosing a few times."
"Anything not nailed down in the gym and lobby are getting trashed and stolen."
"Lobby bathroom is trashed constantly."
"Cars in the parking lot are being broken into and catalytic converters are being stolen."
"These men stalk around the parking lot watching people."
"We do have visitor rules, which are being broken."
"It’s going to get worse before it gets better."
"My goodwill is gone, we want her out."- RotaryMicrotome
Always Do Your Research
"The introduction of non-native species as a means of solving an environmental problem."- Addwon
Not All Issues Can Be Solved Surgically
"Surgery to fix the mentally unwell."
"It sounds so good: no more reliance on medication, you’re good from now on."
"But it didn’t work."
"The outcomes were awful and it was frequently done without any sort of consent."
"It all could have been shut down fairly quickly if people were honest about what was happening, but careers and money was at stake."
"So many unnecessarily suffered."- raftsa
Ironic How Low The Success Rate Was
"Since the abysmal performance of American schools has been in the news recently, 'No Child Left Behind' and it's replacement 'Every Student Succeeds Act'."
"America has never had really good public education, but it used to be serviceable.'
"NCLB came in to try and create some milestones and accountability."
"Instead it made the problem worse.'
'ECSS came in and tried to address its problems, but changed the stuff that wasn't the problem and left the bad parts unscathed."
"Taken all together 57% of high school GRADUATES can't read at a 7th grade reading level and over a quarter are functionally illiterate."- Twokindsofpeople
We all want to help others, and make the world a better place.
But before we jump into action, it is important to stop and reflect who exactly we would be helping.
If anyone or anything at all.