7 of the most glaring inconsistencies in sitcom history
Looking back at the shows we watched during our childhood, there were some weird things happening. Characters would disappear without a trace, sometimes reappearing a few episodes down the road with nary an explanation in sight. There were times where certain characters inexplicably shape-shifted. Oh what a crazy alternate universe some of these sitcoms took place in.
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7 The Disappearance of Judy – Family Matters
Who didn’t love the Winslows and their lovely family? There was Carl, Harriet and their three kids: Eddie, Laura, and… who was the last one again? Well we all remember Judy, the forgotten Winslow child. Early seasons had Judy as your typical studious, precocious child. She’d occasionally come down from her room where she was doing homework and make some sassy comment before being ushered away by Grandma Winslow. Little did we know that one day Judy left the set and was never seen again. She disappeared like Jimmy Hoffa, with no explanation. The most disturbing part was how the Winslows never acknowledged their missing child. Not to play into conspiracy theories, but what if they had something to do with it? Carl did have ties to the police after all.
6 Tori – Saved by the Bell
Ah, the gang from Bayside. We grew up with them, through thick and thin, through the heartbreaks and hijinks. And then, something weird happened in the middle of senior year. Mainstays Kelly and Jessie were suddenly nowhere to be found. Suddenly, Zack and Slater were both without girlfriends. In walks Tori, a leather jacket sporting badass biker chick. Tory became the object of affection and contention for Bayside’s most eligible bachelors and ingrained herself as a member of the gang. Over time, audiences became used to Tori, even accepting her into the fold. Then, as suddenly as she appeared, she was gone again. Kelly and Jessie returned from wherever they went and graduated on time with the rest of the gang. The mystery may never be solved.
5 Morgan’s season long time out – Boy Meets World
Some inconsistencies are so blatant that the producers of the show make little attempt to hide it. In the case of Morgan, the younger sister of Cory and Eric Matthews, the character almost went the way of Judy Winslow. Gradually, Morgan, the annoying little sister, was nowhere to be seen. As is the norm for sitcom families, no one really cared. However, unlike Judy, Morgan returned to our TV sets looking somewhat different (the original actress was replaced) after about a season of absence. Cheekily, she remarked that she had been up in her room for “the longest time out ever.” Nice little wink to the audience producers. How about next time you just explain where your characters disappear to?
4 Uncle Jesse’s two last names – Full House
Oh those producers don’t think we’re paying attention do they? In the first season of this seminal sitcom, the bodacious Uncle Jesse is billed as Jesse Cochran, your typical American last name. Suddenly, from the second season onward, Jesse became a Katsopolis with not so much as an explanation. Don’t you think they could have just had one “very special episode” where Jesse goes back to Greece and gets in touch with his roots and THEN gets his named changed? Have mercy.
3 Peggy’s nephew Seven – Married with Children
When Peg’s cousins dropped their demon seed child off at the Bundy household, audiences figured it was just another plot device that would last for an episode or two, and then disappear. What happened was a lot more strange. Sure Seven disappeared from the house, but he seemed to have a lasting effect on the cast. The D’Arcy’s made mention of Seven hiding out in their house and never leaving, Kelly has a brief flashback of Seven, and his visage appears on a missing milk-carton. What really happened to that mystical child is really anyone’s guess.
2 Rapidly aging Nicky – The Fresh Prince of Bel Air
Sure, this is the same show that gave us two different looking Aunt Vivs with no mention of the change, but this one is just ridiculous. In season five, everyone dotes over the newborn. And without any warning, Nicky aged rapidly seemingly overnight, turning into a pre-schooler before our very eyes. Did he have Benjamin Button-itis? We will, unfortunately, never know. If this was a bizarre plot twist to turn the show into a sci-fi comedy, it didn’t work.
1 Coy and Vance Duke – The Dukes of Hazzard
Amidst a contract dispute, the actors who played Bo and Luke sat out for a season which gave the writers of the show no choice but to… clone them? Two look-alikes, Coy and Vance, who were supposedly cousins of the original Duke boys (and acted exactly the same) showed up in town and picked up where Bo and Luke left off. They even drove the General Lee. Blasphemy, we know. Thankfully this only lasted a season and Coy and Vance were given an unceremonious send off while we got back the original Dukes, got back to partying and making Boss Hogg’s life a living hell. Yeehaw!