Show: All in the Family / Archie Bunker’s Place
Known for: Bigotry, conservatism
Archie Bunker wasn’t a warm and fuzzy father. As a dad, he was definitively old school — a domineering, reactionary World War II veteran prone to racial stereotyping and resentment of anything unusual or different. His daughter, Gloria, and her liberal husband, Mike, were foils to Bunker’s aging views and frequent targets of Bunker’s harangues, as was Lionel Jefferson, the son of Bunker’s African-American neighbors in Queens (until the Jeffersons moved on up to the East Side in their own sitcom). But this was a comedy, after all, and Bunker’s resentment and bigotry was often tempered by a soft heart. Though retired in 1983 with the end of his spinoff, Archie Bunker’s Place, Bunker’s staying power is impressive: TV Guide named him the all-time greatest TV character in 1999.