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Sunday, June 16, 2013

TVs 5 Greatest Dads

In honor of Father's Day, I have listed 5 of my picks for best TV dad. They aren't ranked into any particular order, all of them are equally great in my mind, and are from shows long since ended but still living on in re-run heaven.

Sheriff Andy Taylor
Andy Taylor - The Andy Griffeth Show ran from 1960 - 1968 but lives forever in syndication and I'm sure everyone is familiar with Andy's fathering skills. He was a great dad because he was involved in Opie's life, teaching him right from wrong and disciplining when necessary. The lessons involved life, love, and everything between, with Andy imparting a lot of useful wisdom. Plus he always made time to take Opie fishing! 

Charles Ingalls 
Charles Ingalls - Little House on the Prairie ran from 1974 - 1983. Charles "Pa" was father to Mary, Laura, Carrie and Grace and in later episodes also adopted several children. The show is loosely based on the books written by Laura Ingalls Wilder about her family life in the 19th century American West. Charles cherished his family as well as his wife. I feel that part of being a good father is teaching your children to treat their mother well, and what better way than to lead by example.

Howard Cunningham 
Howard Cunningham - Happy Days aired from 1974 - 1984. Howard handed out his parenting, not only to his children, but also to their friends. He was stern but loving, generous but not over indulgent, teaching values and letting his children learn from their mistakes. He was always available, making time whenever his kids needed him.

Ben Cartwright 
Ben Cartwright - Bonanza aired from 1959 - 1973. Ben had three sons, all from a different wife which passed away, so he was raising his boys on his own. (Well, there was Hop Sing, the cook, but mostly Ben was alone.) He taught his boys the importance of family and caring for one another as well as the importance of community and helping others.

Ozzie Nelson 
Ozzie Nelson - The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet ran from 1952 - 1966 and starred the real life Nelson family. While the series focused mainly on the family's run of the mill problems and was the epitomy of family values with Ozzie handing out great advice, what truly makes him a wonderful dad in my mind isn't really about the fictional father that Ozzie portrayed, but the real life Ozzie who came up with the shows concept because he was a busy bandleader and wanted a way to be able to spend more time with his family, more time being a husband and father.

And that's really what parenting is all about, spending time with your kids, being there for them, teaching them right from wrong, teaching them to love each other and to treat others with respect, and to have compassion for others. And to remember to have fun and enjoy the life you have.


  1. Definitely love the humor of the Andy Griffith show!! That and Bill Cosby's.

  2. What a splendidly lovely Father's Day post! I'm so happy you included Michael Landon as Charles Ingalls, he will always be the quintessential wonderful TV father in my eyes.

    ♥ Jessica

  3. You know one I really love? Lucas McCain on the Rifleman. I just love his relationship with his son- it so reminds me of my husband and son's relationship :)

    1. Oh Rachel, he was next on my list!! I should have done my top 6 picks. lol

    2. yes, but then you'd be guilty of doing a Columbo ... "Just one more thing..." lol


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