Al Bundy is a misanthropic women's shoe salesman with a miserable life. He hates his job, his wife is lazy, his son is dysfunctional (especially with women), and his daughter is dim-witted and promiscuous.
In this sitcom, Charlie, who takes Mike Flaherty's place in later years, is the Deputy Mayor of New York City, and his team of half-wits must constantly save the Mayor from embarrassment and the media.
Michael J. Fox,
Al Bundy is an unsuccessful middle aged shoe salesman with a miserable life and an equally dysfunctional family. He has a very attractive but lazy wife named Peggy who constantly nags him to death while throwing the little money he earns away on herself. He also has a very promiscuous teen aged daughter named Kelly who makes up in attractiveness what she lacks in IQ points, and a not so attractive but bright teen aged son named Bud who seems to think he is a ladies man. To add to Al's misery is his yuppie next door neighbors Marcy and Steve. Marcy and Steve eventually split up with Marcy keeping the house next door to the Bundys and Steve moving away to be a forest ranger. Later Marcy gets remarried to a gigolo named Jefferson who is the male version of Peggy. The sitcom revolves around Al's never ending attempts to better his life which always leads him right back to where he started. Written by
[the "Psycho Dad" theme]
A little touched, or so we're told/Killed his wife 'cause she had a cold/Might as well, she was gettin' old!/Psycho Dad, Psycho Dad, Psycho Dad!/He's quick with a gun!/And his job ain't done!/Killed three wives by twenty-one/He's Psycho Dad!
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With rare exceptions, the end credits are played over a still of Peggy and Al (looking disgusted) sitting on the couch. See more »
Tom Sharpe once wrote the following regarding one of his characters: "Like so many great men, Lord Petrefact loathed his nearest and dearest..."
Many of us identify with Lord Petrefact, but are at a loss to express ourselves in this "don't worry--be happy," never-say-anything-negative world. We have very few role models to lead us against appalling, manipulative family members, and have often resigned ourselves to our fate. We've gone about our lives lacking the words to easily repel the smiley-face squads.
The Bundys are a superb resource for people like us. We can't and shouldn't adopt a Bundy-like demeanour to truly nice, kind people. But the Bundys suggest to us what we can say to obnoxious relatives and neighbours -- our nearest and (supposedly) dearest, who want US to do THEIR bidding so THEY can receive undue obedience, money, goods or status from OUR successes or aspirations.
For example, in one episode, Al thinks of buying a new car. Peg, Kelly and Bud all sneer at the type of car he chooses, telling him high-handedly what kind each of them particularly thinks he should buy -- i.e., what they want HIM to buy to satisfy THEM. Al does what most of us should do in such circumstances: He spreads his arms in a great paternal gesture, smiles broadly, and says, "Your wishes [slight pause for effect] mean nothing to me." It's extremely refreshing to hear. And it's very, very funny. The fact that virtually every character appearing throughout the show's long run was extremely sleazy allows this sort of repartee to continue uninterrupted.
God bless Al Bundy. The show has changed my life.
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