Growing up, I had multiple sexual awakenings. There were those of the Disney movie prince variety, and then a bit later on, those of the TV sitcom variety. Maybe this is the nostalgist in me, but I can’t help but think of the ’90s as this magical time, an era aesthetically superior in every way. A little more lawless, a little more pure, and a lot less scary. What we lacked in Internet we made up for in chokers, the Clinton administration, and really dope sci-fi movies.
And the sitcoms! Oh, the sitcoms. When I die, bury me in a Sitcom-themed casket, a collage featuring members of Seinfeld, Friends (not Ross), and Boy Meets World, to name a few. What I’m saying is, I love sitcoms, and the ’90s had the best sitcoms, and to bring it full circle, Uncle Jesse was my sexual awakening.
1. Uncle Jesse, Full House
I fully blame Uncle Jesse for my life obsession with the proverbial ‘bad boy’. He matures as the series progresses, swapping his leather jackets and motorcycle stunts for a tame family life. Few IRL bad boys are like that because the Bad Boy has mutated into the Fuccboi but whatever, I’m not bitter, it’s fine, it’s fine. Uncle Jesse made the mullet look hot, he did a killer Elvis impression, and, best of all, he has a secret recipe for fried chicken.
2. Alan Matthews, Boy Meets World
Alan Matthews is tight as hell because he made working in a grocery store cool. Then, he won an award for being an outstanding grocer (what?) and opened his own nature store because entrepreneurism. You’d think that with all his free time he’d do a better job of raising his own kids, but whatever. If Mr. Feeny lived next door to me I’d let him raise my kids for me too.
3. Frank Lambert, Step By Step
If Alan Matthews made working in a grocery store cool, Frank Lambert made having a new dad cool. Appealing all-American tan man with salt and pepper hair. His gear is so super wack and straight dad that you can’t even hate on it. It’s too ostentatiously fuckin’ DAD. Loses points for letting his nephew live in his backyard, what the hell kind of parenting is that? Gains points because this:
4. Tim ‘The Tool Man’ Taylor, Home Improvement
I’m going to be honest with you here, Tim Taylor’s stubborn machismo can go straight TF to hell, enough with the grunting already. Except never enough with the grunting I love it I LOVE IT I’m sorry. Despite the tortured appeal of the grunt, Home Improvement was still a hard show for me to watch. Personally, I enjoyed Tim Allen far better as a dad in 1997 cinematic masterpiece Jungle 2 Jungle, but I guess there’s something to be said for his dad joke potency as The Tool Man.
5. Dan Conner, Roseanne
John Goodman has
rarely never been referred to as a DILF, but hear me out on this one: Dan Conner has got the best personality, he’s the sweetest man in the entire world, he’s always in plaid, he’s the emotional anchor of everyone around him, he loves Roseanne so much, their relationship on the show makes me cry, bye.
6. Mitch Leery, Dawson’s Creek
Bruh, forget Dawson and Pacey. Dawson’s dad, you the real MVP. Wait, Dawson’s dad’s dimples, you the real MVP. Too bad Mr. Leery is a fucking idiot who swerved off the road as a result of dropping an ice cream cone in his lap. Tragic.
7. Maxwell Sheffield, The Nanny
He looked great in a tux, lived in a mansion, and was a successful Broadway producer, which everyone knows can’t get you a mansion but whatever. Mostly, he had an accent. Good enough for me.
8. Robert Peterson, The Parent’Hood
The Peterson family strays from other fantastic African-American sitcoms of the ’90s in that they had this very chill Harlem-bred edge to them and also in that the family patriarch is hella sexy (sorry, Uncle Phil, Carl Winslow, and Ray Campbell— great dads! Not DILFs though.) Mr. Peterson is not only a stud, he’s a college professor. Sexy and smart! He also took us on rides of these insane fantasy dream sequences to solve problems, although most of them were actually solved with a whole lot of tears. Sexy, smart, and sensitive!
9. Elliot Stabler, Law and Order SVU
Even though Detective Stabler graced the world with his cop-like authority at the ass-end of ’99, he still counts as a ’90s dad, don’t @ me. He was like this super sexy crusader for abused women and he was such a dick and said things like “you can’t hide from me behind your fancy education, I smell. You.” Holy shit I love him. Here’s a parting gift you sonuvabitch: