The last couple of weeks, I have been surprisingly emotional over the death of actress Jean Stapleton.
The television show
All in the Family
was a big part of my childhood and Jean Stapleton’s passing almost feels like a member of my own family has died. I know that sounds starstruck and kind of stupid, since All in the Family was a television show and not real life. Yeah, yeah, I should pick up a copy of To Kill a Mockingbird and spend my life doing something meaningful rather than watching TV. Got it.
“One of the most acclaimed and controversial shows on television.” is what Henry Fonda said about this show and it holds true today. Watching old episodes on DVD, the show holds up beautifully, still uproariously funny and touching in just the right way, despite the 70s fashion and the infusion of political correctness that has permeated American life in the decades since this show went off the air.
I love it for those reasons certainly, but I love it for something much more.
For a half hour a week, on Saturday nights my family gathered around the television and watched this show–and we laughed.
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