Full House: How It Represents the Late 80s/Early 90s

4489 words 18 pages
Full House: Traditional Themes of Morality, Late Eighties Mentality

The transition from the multicultural era of the eighties to the postnetwork era of the nineties triggered abrupt changes in American media and culture. [6] From fashions to family life, relationships, and attitudes, many new cultural elements subsequently changed television portrayals of ordinary American culture within this time period. More specifically, the culture of the eighties is often characterized by the rise of MTV and megastars, techno music and club drugs, and popular fashions such as leather, leggings, and Ray Bans. Eighties culture can be described as the ‘bombdigity’ and nineties culture can be described as more toned down, moral, and ‘sweet’.
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Similarly, Uncle Jesse is the cool dad, whom the girls learn to be tough from and to stand up for themselves. Uncle Joey is the fun dad, whom the girls seek when they need to laugh things off and move on. Lastly, Danny is the regular dad, the kind of dad we all know and love; the kind of dad that we can go to for help with any problem.

Full House was unlike any other sitcom that aired during the late eighties/early nineties because it broke away from traditional television depictions of male characters as tough and independent. The men living in the Tanner residence had to be the decision-makers, the breadwinners and the nurturing, emotional, parental figures all at the same time. Full House was an important sitcom because it helped to transition the stereotypical hegemonic image of men on television as tough, aggressive, connoisseurs to more compassionate, nurturing, and even matronly, men. As we’ve seen in class, throughout history television has portrayed males as superior to women, like Jim Anderson in Father Knows Best. However, on Full House, the men are often depicted as subordinate to women’s talents and skills since they have trouble with simple tasks, like changing a baby’s diaper or preparing a family dinner. Researchers Klumas and Marchant


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