20th Century Fox

10+ TV Shows From The '80s That Will Never Be As Good As Shows Today

Amanda Steele

It's common and understandable to be nostalgic for past decades, especially if it's the decade that you grew up in. But, while a lot of us have fond feelings for television from the '80s and '90s, the truth is that most of these shows don't hold up that well.

Television today is overall really good, and there are a lot of series that are better than even the best movies. So, these TV shows from the '80s can't really compare.

1. Life with Lucy

CBS

Unlike I Love Lucy, this series was a failure.

While Lucille Ball was beloved for her sitcom work, her final appearance in one was a flop, sadly. There were only 13 episodes filmed for the series, and it was quickly pulled from being on air.

Load Comments

2. Charles in Charge

Charles in Charge starred Scott Baio as the housekeeper for the Powell family as he tries to juggle helping the kids and his college student life.

The only thing people really remember about this sitcom was that it had a catchy theme song.

Load Comments

3. Bosom Buddies

ABC

The only really good thing about this show is that it introduced the world to Tom Hanks.

However, the premise that two men have to dress up as women in order to get a cheap apartment is just ridiculous and also pretty problematic by today's standards.

Load Comments

4. Diff'rent Strokes

Giphy

The whole concept of this series definitely wouldn't fly today.

While there might have been some memorable lines and funny moments, the premise of two orphans from Harlem being saved by a white guy in Park Avenue is rather outdated.

Load Comments

5. Facts of Life

NBC

This series was a spin-off of Diff'rent Strokes and centered around the former maid Mrs. Garret presiding over a girls' boarding school.

The premise itself was definitely shaky, and each character was a stereotype such as a tomboy and beauty queen. Plus, there were also some weird racial stereotypes included.

Load Comments

6. The Brady Brides

NBC

This sequel definitely didn't hold a candle to the original. It was all about Marcia and Jan and their new husbands and didn't include the rest of the family.

It sounds more like a reality TV series than an actual sitcom, and it's no wonder many people have never heard of it.

Load Comments

7. ALF

Giphy

Is ALF an iconic show from the '80s? Yes. Would it do well if it were on television today? Probably not.

The idea of a middle-class family taking in a weird, furry alien is just too far-fetched, and it's definitely the type of sitcom that only worked decades ago.

Load Comments

8. Remington Steele

NBC

The good thing about this show is that it starred Pierce Brosnan. The bad thing about it is that it was a crime drama that can't even compare to similar series today.

It might have been humorous at the time, but there are so many amazing crime-related shows now that are way better.

Load Comments

9. Small Wonder

20th Century Fox

This series is super, super weird as it's all about a 10-year-old robot girl who is treated as a family's adopted daughter. Most of the show is about the family trying to keep the fact that she's a robot a secret.

It's absolutely outlandish, and this far-fetched premise wouldn't do so well on television now.

Load Comments

10. Falcon Crest

CBS

While most people have heard of Dallas and Dynasty, this series was in the same vein but wasn't as great.

It followed a rich family living in the California vineyards, and it was definitely an attempt to capture the success of similar series.

Load Comments

11. AfterMASH

Giphy

While MAS*H is still considered a good television series, the sequel to it is definitely not.

This spin-off was short-lived and only had a few members of the original cast. It took place in a veteran's hospital, but it just wasn't well-done.

Load Comments

12. Silver Spoons

NBC

The '80s loved to do the role-reversal trope for its sitcoms. In the case of Silver Spoons, it was about a father who was very immature and his uptight son that he didn't know before.

The only really memorable thing about this series is that the main character had a train set that was set up all throughout his mansion.

Load Comments

13. Galactica 1980

ABC

This was a spin-off of Battlestar Galactica, but it doesn't hold up like some of the others.

Even at the time, it wasn't super well-liked by audiences, and there were only ten episodes in the season before the show was pulled.

Load Comments

14. She's the Sherrif

This series was bad because the quality and premise weren't great and also because it was really sexist, even for the '80s.

The main character, played by Suzanne Somers, has to become sheriff after her husband, who held the job, passes away.

Load Comments

15. Family Ties

Giphy

This is another popular '80s sitcom that might not be as great as you remember.

The idea of hippies becoming conservative family people isn't going to appeal to everyone, but the one good thing about the series is that it brought us Michael J. Fox.

Load Comments

16. Night Court

NBC

If you're unfamiliar with Night Court, it's kind of like an '80s version of Brooklyn 99; only instead of cops, the show follows the lives of various courthouse employees.

The humor on this show is as dated as can be.

Load Comments

17. One Of The Boys

NBC

If you're wondering why you've never heard of One of the Boys — you're not alone.

The show starred Dana Carvey and Mickey Rooney and lasted only one season. This was also Rooney's final TV series.

Load Comments

18. The Powers of Matthew Star

NBC

Matthew Star might look like your average teenage boy but he is anything but.

This unassuming teen is really an alien prince in disguise, who crash-landed on earth in the wake of an intergalactic battle! If it sounds ridiculous — that's because it is.

Load Comments

19. Married...With Children

Giphy

There are shows that we look back on with pride, and then there are those that should be banished to the deepest reaches of history's Phantom Zone.

Can you guess which category Married...With Children falls into? This show is shameful.

Load Comments

20. Too Close For Comfort

ABC

Talk about a giant step backward for the Women's Movement. Too Close For Comfort does little more than reinforce negative stereotypes.

I will say that it's aptly titled because those are my exact sentiments every time I catch a glimpse of this seriously forgettable relic.

Load Comments

21. Knight Rider

NBC

I am a product of the '80s but even I can't begin to understand the worldwide fascination with The Hoff.

It's hard to imagine that there was ever a time when Knight Rider was taken seriously. I just don't get it.

Load Comments

22. The Dukes Of Hazzard

Giphy

I don't know about you but I have no interest in a show that perpetuates racism, sexism, and every other bad "ism" that you could possibly think of.

That slide across the hood of the car is cool, though — I'll give the Dukes that.

Load Comments

23. Punky Brewster

NBC

This show falls victim to every single '80s trope you could possibly think of.

Also, am I the only one who finds the idea of a child being abandoned at the supermarket inherently dark and not at all humorous?

Load Comments

24. Three's A Crowd

Three's Company is held in incredibly high esteem, considered by many TV enthusiasts to be one of the defining sitcoms of its time.

Three's a Crowd, on the other hand, is a perfect example of what can go wrong when you try to take two bites from the same apple.

Load Comments

25. Archie Bunker's Place

CBS

What was I just saying about taking two bites out of the can; or was it two kicks of the apple? I think I might be crossing my metaphors,

In either case, no one is interested in watching a spin-off show that centers around TV's greatest racist.

Load Comments

26. Snorks

NBC

What's a Snork, you ask? It's basically a Smurf, except without all of the glitz and glamour.

This wasn't the only feeble attempt to rip-off a modern classic, but it is easily one of the worst.

Load Comments

27. My Two Dads

I have to give credit where credit is due: My Two Dads made a valiant attempt to show the funny (and not-so-funny) side to being a single parent and challenged the preconceived gender roles of its time.

The show simply lacked substance and was remarkably unfunny.

Load Comments

28. Dear John

NBC)

Have you ever seen Dear John? It tells the story of a man who loses absolutely everything in a divorce settlement and then becomes so depressed that he goes to join a self-help group.

I applaud the acknowledgment toward mental well-being, but this show was just depressing as can be.

Load Comments

29. Sanford

NBC

Redd Foxx was a monumental and groundbreaking comedian, deserving of our respect as well as our praise.

This is precisely why we would all do well to just try and forget that Sanford ever managed to stick around for 2 seasons.

Load Comments

30. The Incredible Hulk

Giphy

This isn't so much an indictment on the classic TV Hulk, as much as it is a commendation for how truly incredible comic book TV storytelling has become.

I mean, have you seen WandaVision? It's freaking phenomenal — I rest my case.

Load Comments
Next Article