Can You Name These 1990s TV Families?

By: Ian Fortey

"Frasier" followed the story of Frasier Crane, who first appeared on the show "Cheers" way back in 1984. Kelsey Grammar also played the role of Frasier on a single episode of the sitcom "Wings" in the 1990s as well. On his own show, he moved back home to be with his elderly father and uptight brother.

"Roseanne" was the sitcom that made Roseanne Barr famous, and was rebooted again in 2017 after being off the air for 20 years. The show was about the Conners, which is also the name of the rebooted reboot of the show after Roseanne was fired.

"Family Matters" was a show about the Winslow family, featuring Carl Winslow, his wife Harriet, and their kids Eddie, Laura and Judy. Though it wasn't immediately obvious, the show was actually a spin-off from the sitcom "Perfect Strangers."

"Home Improvement" was a show about Tim Taylor and his family and was famous for not only giving the world Tim Allen but also for introducing Pamela Anderson who went on to some pretty big things herself.

"Married ... with Children" was almost an anti-sitcom in the 1990s featuring the Bundy clan. They were rude and crude and seemed to be the opposite of every TV family before then. The show was very popular and was the first primetime show on the FOX network.

Alf, whose name was actually Gordon Shumway, was taken in by Willie, Lynne, Kate and Brian Tanner. In the first season, Alf drank beer, but that was dropped from later seasons due to the overwhelming fan base of children.

"King of the Hill" was an animated comedy that was made by the man behind "Beavis and Butthead." This show was more family sitcom and focused mostly on Hank Hill, his friends and his family in small-town Texas.

Few shows from the '90s are as iconic as "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air." The show made Will Smith a household name and taught a generation of people how to do the Carlton dance. Smith only agreed to be on the show because he was having tax problems with the IRS.

"Full House" was one of the most enduring sitcoms from the 1990s. Stars Bob Saget and Dave Coulier actually used to be real-life roommates for a while, many years before "Full House" was a real show.

"Boy Meets World" was mostly a show about Cory Matthews and him, you know, meeting the world. The show was so popular it got a spin-off/reboot years later called "Girl Meets World."

"The Simpsons" is one of the longest running shows on television, but it did go through the entire decade of the 1990s. All the characters on "The Simpsons" have four fingers except for one - God.

"Buffy the Vampire Slayer" focused on Buffy Summers. Occasionally the show dealt with her mom Joyce, like the episode in which she dates a man who turned out to be a robot, played by "Three's Company" actor John Ritter.

"The Wonder Years" was a bit of a drama and a bit of a comedy. The show was apparently inspired by the movie "A Christmas Story," which relied heavily on a voice-over narration of the main character as an adult.

"Grace Under Fire" starred Bret Butler and had a very "Roseanne" vibe to it. Rumor has it that the show was extremely difficult to work on as star Bret Butler was hard to deal with due to her real-life substance abuse issues.

"Sister, Sister" features real-life twin sisters Tia and Tamera Mowry. The sisters convinced their real-life mother to move the family to California when they were just 12 in the hope of becoming famous.

"Step by Step" was a show about a woman with three kids and a man with three kids becoming a couple with six kids. In the opening credits of the show, there were seven children shown with no explanation for who the extra one was.

"Sabrina, the Teenage Witch" was based on the Archie comic of the same name. Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, accused the show of stealing her idea saying she had pitched a show about her and another woman as the aunts of a witch with a talking black cat the year before.

"3rd Rock From the Sun" has the distinction of being one of the few shows ever to actually feature a 3D episode. The season 2 finale was shot in two parts on a budget of $1.5 million.

"Charmed" featured Alyssa Milano, Shannon Doherty and Holly Marie Combs. The show was notorious for budgetary issues that required plot changes to accommodate. Alyssa Milano's character was meant to have the power of levitation, but it was written out to save money.

Ray Barone is the center of the story in "Everybody Loves Raymond." The show was immensely popular, and by 2003, Ray Romano was the highest paid actor on TV making $1.7 million an episode.

"Blossom" made Mayim Bialik famous and also introduced us to her best friend Six. Why was the character named Six? There were two answers. One was that she was the sixth child her parents had and the other reason was that six was the number of beers her parents drank on the night she was conceived.

Even though "Empty Nest" was a "Golden Girls" spin-off, it did feature Estelle Getty's Sophia fairly often. Sophia didn't do as much on "Empty Nest" as she had done on "Golden Girls" because Getty was getting older and had problems with the scripts. Often her lines needed to be written on cue cards.

George Costanza was Jerry Seinfeld's best friend on "Seinfeld," and his obnoxious parents routinely stole the show. In real life, the man George Costanza was partially based on sued Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David for millions. The case was dismissed.

"Unhappily Ever After" was a blatant rip off of "Married ... with Children" and was even created by one of the same producers. It was also one of the rare shows to routinely break the 4th wall and acknowledge that it was just a TV show.

"The Wayans Brothers" were actually the Williams brothers on the show. It was also the flagpole show of the WB network that helped launch its Wednesday night line up.

"Party of Five" was a pretty depressing concept for a show. It also seemed to rest wholly on the shoulders of star Neve Campbell. When she didn't renew her contract, the show was canceled a couple of weeks later.

"Major Dad" was about Major John MacGillis marrying a woman with three daughters. The show is notable for being one of the few sitcoms produced that painted the military in a fairly positive light.

"Picket Fences" was a David E. Kelly show, the same producer who created other massive hits like "Ally McBeal," "Chicago Hope," "Big Little Lies," and "The Practice."

"Harry and the Hendersons" was initially a movie starring John Lithgow. In both the film and the TV show, Harry was played by 7'2" tall actor Kevin Peter Hall who also played the alien in the movies "Predator" and "Predator 2."

"The Jeff Foxworthy Show" gone one season on ABC before it was canceled and picked up again by NBC. The location changed, the theme song changed, and every cast member besides Jeff Foxworthy and Haley Joel Osment changed.

Jason and Maggie Seaver were the parents of Mike, Carol, Ben and Chrissy on "Growing Pains," the show that made Kirk Cameron famous. Cameron and Tracy Gold, who played his sister Carol, had already played siblings years earlier in a McDonald's commercial.

Robert and Jerri Peterson had four children. The show ran for five seasons and experienced numerous cast changes throughout its run. The show was also compared to the "Cosby Show" for the way it dealt with family issues.

Joey Lawrence rose to fame on the show "Blossom." His younger brothers Matthew and Andrew joined him on the show "Brotherly Love" which only lasted two seasons - one on NBC and one on the WB.

Maxwell Sheffield is the man who hires Fran Fine to help take care of his three children on the series. The show was so popular that there were a number of "Nanny"- inspired dolls on the market, for those who didn't want a traditional Barbie.

Reverend Eric Camden was the father of the clan in "7th Heaven." The youngest children on the show were twins, Sam and David. In real life, they were actually played by quadruplets for a while.

Jamie Foxx played Jamie King, and he worked at the King's Tower hotel with his aunt and uncle. Foxx had made a name for himself before his self-titled show on the series "In Living Color."

"Judging Amy" was the story of a single mother who was also a family court judge as she returns home and deals with her mother and siblings, as well as her daughter. It lasted for six seasons.

Jack and Maya Gallo were a father and daughter team working at Jack's magazine "Blush" while his daughter tried to prove herself as a journalist. After "Seinfeld" went off the air, "Just Shoot Me" was a contender to replace it, but lost out to "Frasier."

"Roc" was the nickname of the main character in the show that featured him, his wife, brother and father. The show was notable for the fact it broadcast a number of episodes live, rather than taping and editing them ahead of time.

"Sisters" followed the lives of Alexandra "Alex" Reed Halsey Barker, Theodora "Teddy" Reed Margolis Falconer Sorenson, Georgiana "Georgie" Reed Whitsig, and Francesca "Frankie" Reed Margolis.

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Image: NBC via youtube

About This Quiz

Between the 1980s and the 1990s television seriously evolved. The goofy family sitcom that tried to teach us lessons was slowly being replaced by the sitcom that just showed us people in their real, raw, ridiculous state. Characters were a little more gritty in some cases and more relatable in others.  Families had more real issues. And yet some shows really pushed the boundaries in terms of zaniness and unpredictability.  Laugh tracks were somewhat less annoying.  Also, there was "Friends."

From "Seinfeld" to "Dinosaurs" to "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air" to "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," there were a lot of diverse and fun shows to check in with, and a lot of interesting family dynamics from sitcoms to dramas and even the odd genre-defying bit of weirdness. Did you ever wish you could be one of the Bundys? Or the Tanners? Or the Winslows? Do you recognize all three of those names? Then this just might be the quiz for you. It's time to prove all those hours you spent watching Must See TV were worth it. Dig deep into your memories of TV past and tell us who all these '90s TV families are!

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