All in the Family is regarded as one of the funniest sitcoms of all time. Even in the show’s disclaimer before the first episode, producers wanted to make the audience know that the show would throw a humorous light on the lives of modern families, their concerns, prejudices, and frailties. And they certainly did what they told us they would. This show was hilarious. But if you’re missing it, take a look at these All in the Family Secrets…
The show was based on another British sitcom
If you thought that All in the Family was all-around original, you’re sorely mistaken. In fact, Norman Lear bought the rights to a British sitcom that he had heard about and worked on the show from there. Til Death Do Us Part ran on the BBC in the ‘60s and ‘70s and followed the lives of a working-class family in the East End of London.
Archie Bunker was created around Lear’s father
Most of the time, producers and directors work with what they know to create real and passionate characters. In this instance, Lear based his character of Archie on his own father. He often told Norman that he was the laziest white kid he’d ever seen, called him a Meathead and also called his wife a Dingbat. Of course, it was all said in jest.
There was no backlash
Despite the disclaimer that CBS put out before the show aired, they still expected people to complain and moan about the show. They even hired more switchboard operators to deal with the phone calls they thought they were going to get. But they only had a handful of complaints throughout the whole series. Viewers seemed to embrace what the show was about, and we can understand why…
But there were phone calls
Although nobody rang to complain, CBS did receive phone calls from viewers who just couldn’t understand the second line of the theme song. People couldn’t get the hang of the fact that the line said, ‘Gee, our old LaSalle ran great’ that after the second season, they decided to re-record the theme song to stop people ringing up and asking them!
The Archi-less episodes
If you were a hardcore All in the Family fan, you might have noticed that there were four episodes in July 1974 that didn’t include Archie. This is because Carroll O’Connor was in dispute with the production team over his pay. He claimed that they owed him $64,000 in back-pay and he also wanted 12 weeks of vacation time during his schedule – which was 24 weeks. Errr, we’d like that too, O’Connor.