90s Sitcom BFFS We Totally Wish We Had

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by Staff & Contributors

in Gaming & Tech, Television

The 1990s were a golden era for sitcom TV shows.  The humor, characters, and zany storylines provided audiences the opportunity to share laughter and tears together in a way that’s hard to find now that everyone has their attention constantly fixed on a phone or tablet.

But the absolute best part of these throwback sitcoms was the “best buddy” relationships.  We all wish that we had the kind of BFFs often portrayed in the 90s sitcom world — the besties so passionate that a fight can’t help but end in a hug.

These classic shows illustrated just how important it is to have a BFF as the star player on your team, always protecting your back and looking out for your best interests.

What better name to call a show about six friends than, well, Friends!  This ensemble cast of 20 and 30-something NYC-ers had all the makings of comedic gold.  Our favorite pals from the whopping ten season run are longtime roommates Chandler (Matthew Perry) and Joey (Matt LeBlanc).  Each a serious goofball in his own right, they balanced each other perfectly.  Chandler made Joey act upright when necessary, and Joey encouraged Chandler to let his hair down.  Plus, their sparsely-appointed apartment was the epitome of the 90s bachelor pad: a couple of recliners, a TV set, and some cold brews in the fridge.  What else could you even possibly need?

You’re probably lying if you claim that you didn’t watch Full House.  Don’t worry.  It’s our little secret and your guilty pleasure!  As a show with several BFF combos, Jesse (John Stamos) and Joey (Dave Coulier) stood out during the eight-season run.  They were contrasting personalities who probably wouldn’t have been buddies had circumstance not thrown them together in the Tanners’ makeshift household.  Jesse was a serious, brooding musician while Joey was the whimsical comic. Naturally, they often clashed when one of Joey’s harebrained schemes went awry or Jesse acted way too cool.  The greater good of the gang always prevailed in the end, bringing Jesse and Joey back to the same page. This was the era when Paula Abdul sang “Opposites Attract”, and perhaps no duo better exemplified that message.

Seinfeld is regarded by many as the greatest sitcom of all time, which is definitely an assertion that’s hard to argue against.  What other show delivered the laughs so consistently for nine seasons and brought “yada yada yada” into the popular lexicon?  This infamous “show about nothing” masterfully created a hilarious spectacle out of the minutia and non-events in the lives of Jerry (Jerry Seinfeld), George (Jason Alexander), Elaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), and Kramer (Michael Richards).  It’s only right that we consider the frivolous foursome together as one BFF squad because the show just wouldn’t have worked if any one of them had been missing. While the most whacky storylines often created divides between the besties, all was eventually forgiven, usually over coffee at the local diner.

No one who watched TV in the 90s can forget Tim Allen’s breakout sitcom role as Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor in Home Improvement.  For eight uproarious seasons, he hosted the fictional DIY home improvement show Tool Time with his sidekick, and comedic foil, Al (Richard Karn).  While Tim presumed himself to be quite savvy with power tools and renovation projects, he frequently caused calamities that injured himself and others.  Cool, calm, and collected, Al was always there to pick up the pieces and ensure that the show went on. Tim often poked fun at Al’s rather plain personality, but these guys shared a chemistry and stick-togetherness reserved for only the tightest BFFs.

Cheers ruled the 80s, so it was not a surprise when Kelsey Grammar was tapped to continue his character role into the 90s on Frasier, the best depiction ever of a call-in radio show psychiatrist who can’t seem to overcome his own neurosis.  Frasier had a built-in frenemy during the show’s 11 seasons in his brother Niles, also an uppity psychiatrist.  The pair’s personalities were so closely matched that their constant bickering and competition was unavoidable.  Professional matters were often at the heart of their disagreements, as Niles considered himself to be a highly-dignified psychiatrist, while Frasier practiced a “fast food approach” to psychiatry.  Nonetheless, the brothers offered each other the kind of understanding and companionship only a BFF can provide.

 

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