Helpful life lessons taught by old–school TV shows

Kaitlin Gloria , Co-News Editor

 Almost everyone has come across a situation in their life and thought, “what would [insert character here] do?” It is common in society to learn life skills from friends, family and parents, however, it seems as though people learn just as much through watching TV.

TV shows teach lessons that aren’t always learned first–hand. Television shows, especially from the late 90’s to the early 2000’s, have taught our generation a thing or two about everything from school, to relationships and friendships.

“Full House” was a show that taught viewers that family comes first. Within the sitcom, widowed father Danny Tanner makes endless sacrifices to keep his  three daughters happy. After the death of his late wife, Tanner contacts his brother–in–law, Jesse, and best friend, Joey, to help raise his three daughters, Michelle, Stephanie and DJ.

As dysfunctional as the household is, each episode teaches viewers the value of family and that blood runs thicker than water. In one episode, Stephanie did not have a mother to bring to her Honeybee troop mother–daughter sleepover. In an attempt to be the best dad he could be, Danny attempts to fill that space by being her stand–in mother.

Although no one can replace the relationship Stephanie and her mother had, Danny still fulfills his parental duties and provides her with unconditional love.   Paradoxically, comedic shows like “Friends” have more of a satirical script, but teach valuable lessons through humor. “Friends” has taught us that everyone should pursue his or her dreams and do what he or she really wants, even if others don’t approve.

Throughout the show, each character deals with struggles including finding jobs, making a name for themselves and failed relationships. The first episode shows Rachel Green as a runaway almost–bride at Central Perks, before starting a new life with friends Monica, Chandler, Phoebe, Ross and Joey.

Green was privileged, but pressured, to marry a successful orthodontist by her family that she did not truly love. Throughout “Friends,” Rachel learns to live happily on a budget  with people she genuinely loves.

Newer shows like “One Tree Hill,” that aired in the early 2000’s, revolve around complex family situations, along with the highs and lows of love and friendship.      “One Tree Hill” teaches us that if one’s love is true, he or she will always come back. Main characters Lucas, Nathan, Brooke, Haley and Peyton all experience extreme pain with their emotions. Specifically, Peyton and Lucas start off as strangers, coming from different circle of friends and social classes. Even though their friends did not approve, their love was everlasting.

Through TV shows, viewers learn important lessons without ever having to experience them first–hand. The moral of the story is that the right show can teach anyone important values that are applicable in real–life.