Back in the 90s (which is so hot right now) Friday nights meant TGIF. TGIF featured many, many now classic sitcoms. It was the perfect Friday night unless you were a cool teenager and probably had other plans. I, fortunately, was not a teenager for most of the 90s TGIF popularity explosion. Many of my Friday nights were spent hanging out with my sister watching TGIF and having pizza or McDonalds. Friday nights were the only time this type of food was allowed unless it was summer and we could con our grandparents into giving it to us while our parents were at work. By the way, that rarely worked. ABC set up a brilliant line of programming including Family Matters, Perfect Strangers, Boy Meets World, and the little remembered: Step By Step. My favorite classic of the TGIF era was Full House.
In a stroke of genius, I decided I’d attempt to choose 5 of my favorite episodes of the classic television show. Unfortunately, looking over the episode list it became harder and harder to choose, and I ended up with 6. So without further introduction and no particular order, here are my 6 favorite episodes of Full House.
D.J. Tanner’s Day Off | Season 1, Episode 22
Back in the late 80s and 90s a cool place existed. It was called the record store, and patrons could go there and find records, CDs, and cassette tapes. All of the latest hits and under the radar tunes where there. They were mostly located in shopping malls where girls with large hair used to hang out at the Orange Julius and say “LIKE OH MY GOD” all the time. Sometimes they would even have musicians (and pop stars) stop by and sign things for their adoring fans which is what happens in D.J. Tanner’s Day Off. DJ finds out her favorite pop singer, Stacey Q, will be doing a signing but total bummer it’s during the day when she should be at school. What is the logical plan to get to the mall and get her autograph? Con her rebellious Uncle Jesse into telling her a story of how he used to skip school. DJ decides to use this information against Uncle Jesse and Uncle Joey knowing they certainly will not let her go. How this brilliant scam works on Uncle Jesse I’ll never know. He literally just told her how he used to do it, and is none the wiser when she pulls his completely believable scam. Kimmy on the other hand clearly has very little parental supervision and is ready to go. Now this is TV land where adults have compassion for children, so naturally Joey feels terrible D.J. is missing this momentous occasion so what does he do? He grabs baby Michelle (whose wearing a leash) and takes her to the mall to get the autograph for D.J. The girls don’t expect Joey to be there so when they see him, they run and hide only to have their plan foiled by baby Michelle wandering around with her baby leash.
Middle Aged Crazy | Season 2, Episode 10
Stephanie doesn’t like being the middle child. Who would really? Uncle Jesse and Uncle Joey are busy with adult things like having a job. D.J. has an all important science project to complete which Jesse and Joey are helping with. Michelle is small and adorable and has Danny’s fully attention as he’s trying to record her for a segment on Wake Up, San Fransisco. I can’t even being to imagine what the hell this segment was about. Nepotism maybe? There’s no one to watch Stephanie break the hula hooping record! She is majorly bummed about this. Breaking the hula hooping record is huge with you a little kid. It’s like the time I learned how to do a somersault in the pool and made everyone watch me do it for hours although they stopped caring after the first one. Stephanie decides the only way to get away from the middle child syndrome is to get married. Whose she going to marry? Harry, of course. Only until dinner time though because he’s got other things to do. Eventually, because this is TV, everyone in the family realizes the error of their ways and how badly they’ve made Stephanie feel.
Misadventures In Babysitting | Season 3, Episode 14
Before cell phones, having a your own landline in your room was huge. I begged and begged and it never happened. D.J. decides she wants her own phone line. She decides if she pays for it her dad would probably be more willing to consider allowing it. How does a pre-teen make money? Babysitting. This whole episode is filled with irresponsible babysitting. Stephanie is babysitting Michelle, and D.J. is babysitting Brian. Brian is 8 and, due to his parents reaction when D.J. gets there, hard to handle. During the evening, young Brian begins to become more and more out of control. He even gets his head stuck between the stair railings. I will be the first to admit when I watch this episode now I always find myself saying, “YEAH exactly. You deserve that. Don’t go around putting your head in things, Brian.” Oh no, what is D.J. going to do? Leave him there until his parents come home? No. She will never get her phone line like that! She calls Kimmy, and they put butter on his head in order to grease it through the bars. That clearly brilliant plan doesn’t work, and D.J. decides she needs to suck it up and call her dad for help. Danny comes rushing over, and doesn’t even laugh when he sees this idiotic kid with his head stuck in the bars. He gives D.J. a loving speech about how hard she tried or something like that, and just decides to give her the phone line because, well, she tried.
Honey, I Broke the House | Season 3, Episode 20
Joey has just gotten a new car. It’s a classic, red, 1963 Rambler, and it’s very important. He find out it has a scratch and he runs out to grab a little touch up paint. Apparently not thinking to drive there? It must have been right next door….to this residential neighborhood they live in. Stephanie, who clearly doesn’t have any after school activities at this point, decides she’s going to pretend drive and play in Joey’s car. How could this possibly go wrong? Oh right, she’s a child playing in a motor vehicle with the keys in the ignition. Adult supervision must be hard to come by in television world. Stephanie begins touching everything in the car and eventually drives the car backwards into the house. Whhhhhhhhhhhat? Naturally she decides to move to Mexico. Although Mexico to young Stephanie is Becky’s apartment. Each family member has a reaction to the car ending up in the kitchen. If I can remember, Joey comes and says he’s going to need a little more paint. Jesse tries to put down groceries but there’s no table. Michelle yells “There’s a car. In the kitchen!” Stephanie is nowhere to be found which should convey guilt 100%, but she isn’t found until Jesse heads to Becky’s to show his jealousy. Becky is supposed to be going on a date with a football player until Jesse comes and acts all jealous. There he finds Stephanie, “just hanging around” in a coat in Becky’s closet.
Crushed | Season 5, Episode 16
Stephanie is turning 10. It’s pretty much a big deal since Tommy Page is going to be performing on Wake Up, San Francisco. Danny, being the cool dad he is, says she can’t attend the performance. What? How rude. It’s only the Tommy Page. The Tommy Page I didn’t even know was a real and popular singer until researching this episode. The reason Danny won’t let her go is because he has secretly gotten Tommy to perform at Stephanie’s birthday party!!! Whhhhhhhhhhhhat? Completely realistic. Like that time my dad got New Kids on the Block to perform at my Little Mermaid themed birthday party in 1994. Okay, so maybe that didn’t happen, but it would have been cool. Tommy arrives at the party singing a song to Stephanie. A song I can no longer even remember. Stephanie decides they are going to be married because of the way he signs her CD. Unfortunately, D.J. also feels she and Tommy are going to get married. Like all good siblings, they fight over this possibility and who will win his affections. Too bad Tommy Page already has a girlfriend. The two sisters make up and Stephanie reveals she was making wedding invitations. That’s a completely normal behavior?
The House Meets the Mouse | Season 6, Episodes 23 + 24
In the 90s, ABC was merged with Disney. During this time, nearly every sitcom on the channel took a visit to Disney World. Full House was no exception. Jesse and the Rippers (who were number one in Japan) have been asked to perform at Disney World!!! It just so happens it’s also Becky and Jesse’s two-year anniversary because when it rains it pours in television land. The whole family decides to tag along, and have their own adventures. D.J., whose away from her boyfriend Steve, begins to see him everywhere. In the real world we call that a problem, but in TV land it’s just abnormal. She even sees him as Aladdin which is funny since Steve voiced the movie version of Aladdin. The girls just happen to be waiting in line to rub the magic lamp. See, whichever lucky boy or girl wins this strange event gets to be prince/princess for the day and is granted 3 wishes. 3 wishes not voiced or carried out by Robin Williams. D.J. tells Stephanie to let Michelle go first and of course Michelle wins. Stephanie looses her sanity because she should have won but allowed Michelle to go first. For some reason Kimmy is there, and she tells Michelle she’s making boring wishes. Michelle, like any kid at the magic kingdom, wishes her and her sisters could get on all the rides without waiting in long lines. Solid wish, Michelle, since this was before Fast Passes existed. Michelle let’s being the princess of the park go to her head and begins to annoy everyone and she wanders off. Meanwhile, Danny continuously tries to propose to Vicki (again when it rains it pours) but gets interrupted. Michelle begins to wish she hadn’t wandered off because now she’s missing her family. Apparently a tea party with your favorite characters doesn’t equal family. Steve shows up, Stephanie whines to Joey (who apparently didn’t go to the park at all?), and Michelle is found. Michelle makes her last wish and let’s Stephanie be princess for the rest of the day. Let’s be honest, it’s probably like 5pm and it really wasn’t that big of an honor. A Disney princess overhears this act of kindness and announces the entire family gets to ride in the parade! Oh, and Danny proposes to Vicki and she says yes. Everything is wonderful in the magic kingdom.
This whole idea got me thinking: what ever happened to predictability. The milkman, the paper boy, evening t.v.? You miss your old familiar friends waiting just around the bend. You know, everywhere you look, there’s a heart. A hand to hold on to. Everywhere you look, there’s a face of somebody who needs you.
Lastly, I’m just going to share Jesse and the Rippers performing a medley of their hits on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon last week which is what inspired this post: