Archie Bunker, was a bigoted working-class family man who held his views of the world. His viewpoints clash with nearly everyone he comes into contact with especially his son-in-law Mike Stivic (or, as Archie delights in calling him, "Meathead"). Written by
Brian Rathjen <email@example.com>
Mike is shown being a college student in the 1970s. Assuming that he went to college straight from high school (or even after an open year) he would still be in his early 20s when the series began. Rob Reiner is clearly older than the character would be and he seems to be a very poor student as it takes him nearly six years to complete college (despite going full time) only to obtain a job that would require just a four-year degree. See more »
When this show premiered, the American television audience had never witnessed anything like it before!! Archie Bunker became a household word... His whole mindset was that of the straight and narrow philosophy which reflected the introductory song to this series "Those Were The Days"...."All in the Family" had a two pronged attack on realism in television programming which was acrimonious as well as groundbreaking!! First of all, this show pointed out how not every American was a spawn of lace curtain living!! Your average Joe lived in a very modest house, one similar to Achie Bunker's!! Secondly, the changing times of the sixties and seventies brought on mores of behavior that cultural conservatives such as Archie Bunker could not really deal with!! New York City brought on a bevy of cultural stereotypes who compounded Archie's difficulty to cope with a changing era!! The characters in "All in the Family" were all well fortified by firmly entrenched political viewpoints which evoked a compelling aura of ignorance and blissful stubbornness!! Eventually, each and every one of them became the recipients of political indiscretions just by virtue of the fact that they were victims of their own hypocrisy!! Archie (Carroll O'Connor) was the bigoted non-dimensional plebeian whom people viewed as irascible and not very easy to understand!! While Archie appeared very cantankerous and closed minded, he was not alone, and was far more common and run of the mill than most people would like to believe!! Edith (Jean Stapleton) his wife, was the simpleton whose good nature prevailed throughout one dose of modern philosophy and spousal rudeness after the next!! Mike (Rob Reiner) the confused and arrogant liberal, (He was my favorite character on the show!!) He thought solutions to real life problems could be attained in text books!! Finally, Gloria (Sally Struthers) was the whining and closely guarded daughter, who took in an egalitarian approach to different lifestyles, as a way of rebelling against her father!! The chemistry with the actors, and actresses and producers and directors of this show became a masterful blend of effective programming through a deliberately flawed and injured comedy!! Almost no other show was fully able to accomplish this!! "The Honeymooners" is about the only one I can think of off hand!! I saw an episode last night where Archie saved "a woman's" life by giving her mouth to mouth resuscitation, only to find out that this "woman" was a transvestite!! It was situations such as these that made this show so popular!! When issues about race, social adversity, sexual preferences and unusual lifestyles are taboo, they cultivate a precarious curiosity which the television audience has, and wants to satisfy!! The conundrum being: Why are these aspects of American culture so hush hush anyway!! "All in the Family" was more popular than almost any other T.V. Show in the history of television, and it was because it broke ground on purveying an accurate portrayal about so many social issues....When a sitcom like "All in the Family" has had so much success, your hat has to go off to it!! I feel that "All in the Family" has made assertive progress in establishing better television... This is not easy to do!!
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