These Sitcom Families Put the ‘Fun’ In Dysfunctional

These Sitcom Families Put the ‘Fun’ In Dysfunctional

By Sanjana Subramanian25 February, 2021 4 min read
These Sitcom Families Put the ‘Fun’ In Dysfunctional

Nothing beats a good old family drama. But what’s even better is a dysfunctional family! Television and OTT platforms today have a host of such family sitcoms filled with whacky characters and hilarious banter. Here’s a list of our absolute favourite dysfunctional families.

The Roses from ‘Schitt’s Creek’

Stop acting like a disgruntled pelican and admit it! When it comes to dysfunctional families, the Roses (pictured above) top the charts. This Canadian sitcom is all about a once wealthy family of four that falls on hard times. They’re forced to leave behind their upscale life and move to a tiny town called Schitt’s Creek, that they once bought as a joke. The mother, Moira Rose is prone to histrionics. Daughter Alexis is a bit of an airhead who has been on the craziest dates with strange men, while the son David is a narcissist. Johnny, the father, is the only one who comes across as remotely normal. They’re as dysfunctional a family as can be, bickering over the smallest of things, and yet coming together as a team when you least expect it.
Creators: Eugene Levy, Daniel Levy
Cast: Eugene Levy, Catherine O’Hara, Daniel Levy, Annie Murphy
Seasons: 6
Streaming on: Netflix

The Wilkersons from ‘Malcolm in the Middle’

Before you ask, yes, this family’s last name is Wilkerson! While the last name was never verbally spoken on the show, it did appear just once in the pilot episode, on the oldest son Francis’ name tag. The series is about Malcolm, the family’s genius middle child. His mother Lois is overbearing and stubborn, constantly struggling to restore order in her house full of chaotic males. Hal, the father, is immature but loving, while Malcolm’s other brothers are either troublemakers, day-dreamers or bullies.
Creator: Linwood Boomer
Cast: Frankie Muniz, Jane Kaczmarek, Bryan Cranston, Christopher Masterson, Justin Berfield, Erik Per Sullivan
Seasons: 7
Streaming on: Disney+ Hotstar

The Bluths from ‘Arrested Development’

Meet the Bluths – an exceedingly dysfunctional clan with their own weird family rules. When George Bluth Sr. is sent to prison for federal crimes, his son Michael Bluth is left in charge. Michael has to try to keep the family together, in spite of each one being an oddball. His mother Lucille is an alcoholic, his sister Lindsay is a reckless narcissist, brother Gob is irresponsible and delusional and his youngest brother Buster is childish and allows his mother to control his life. Adding to this strange mix are his cousins George-Michael and Maeby, who share a strong and really weird bond with each other.
Creator: Mitchell Hurwitz
Cast: Jason Bateman, Portia de Rossi, Will Arnett, Michael Cera, Alia Shawkat, Tony Hale, David Cross
Seasons: 5
Streaming on: Disney+ Hotstar

The Sarabhais from ‘Sarabhai vs Sarabhai’

“Sheer comedic gold” is probably what Maya Sarabhai would say about this popular Indian sitcom. Even though it released back in 2004, the show remains relevant and hysterical even today. Comprising five core members, the Sarabhais are a wealthy family of misfits living in the posh Cuffe Parade area of Mumbai. Indravadan Sarabhai, the patriarch, can never keep a straight face and is always upto mischief, while his wife Maya is a high society queen. Maya looks down upon the “middle-class”, which is pretty much what her daughter-in-law Monisha is, a simple Punjabi woman whose ultimate fantasies involve obtaining sweet bargains while shopping. Her husband Sahil, possibly the sanest individual in the family, constantly finds himself squashed between his mother and wife. Rosesh Sarabhai, the unmarried son, is childlike, adores his “momma” and writes poetry that nobody wants to listen to. There are constant fights, silly competitions and lots of laughter when it comes to this super dysfunctional yet adorable family.
Creators: Deven Bhojani, Aatish Kapadia
Cast: Satish Shah, Ratna Pathak Shah, Sumeet Raghavan, Rupali Ganguly, Rajesh Kumar
Seasons: 2
Streaming on: Disney+ Hotstar

The Simpsons from ‘The Simpsons’

The Simpsons are possibly the most famous animated family in television history. One of the first things that comes to mind when you think of this show is the sight of Homer Simpson strangling his son Bart. If that doesn’t tell you how dysfunctional this family is, we don’t know what will! Homer is just not a typical family man, so wife Marge is left to deal with most matters of the house, like curtains catching fire or something equally crazy. Daughter Lisa is super smart but isn’t motivated by those around her, while Bart is always getting into trouble at school. In a nutshell, the Simpsons do seem to love each other, but they do have a weird way of showing it.
Creator: Matt Groening
Seasons: 32
Streaming on: Disney+ Hotstar

The Parekhs from ‘Instant Khichdi’

The Parekh parivar might just be the strangest family ever seen on television. Each character is a loose cannon. Instead of cringing at the slapstick comedy, you will find yourself laughing along at the strange family dynamics. This Gujarati fam gets into all sorts of trouble together. The ever-tired Hansa and ever-smiling Praful are ditzy lovebirds, while Jayshree is a savage gossipmonger. Once you add in Bapuji’s unending demands for chai (to which Jayshree has the most cutting comebacks) and a host of other funny characters, you have before you a real madhouse.
Creators: JD Majethia, Aatish Kapadia
Cast: Anang Desai, Rajeev Mehta, Supriya Pathak, Vandana Pathak, Jamnadas Majethia
Seasons: 1
Streaming on: Disney+ Hotstar

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Tags: #Arrested Development #Disney+ Hotstar #Instant Khichdi #Malcolm in the Middle #Netflix #Sarabhai Vs Sarabhai #Schitts Creek #Sitcoms #web series
Sanjana Subramanian
Written by

Sanjana Subramanian

Caffeine addict. Serial book sniffer. Constantly channelling her inner Anjali (and sometimes Poo). Still waiting for her Hogwarts letter.

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