The Muslim Lens

Entertainment reviews from an Islamic Perspective.

Full House (1987-1995)

full house tv show logoFull House (1987-1995) 

Appropriateness Rating: Good (if you skip inappropriate episodes)

Entertainment Rating: Don’t Miss It

Full House is a well-known American Comedy TV show about a father Danny Tanner, who asks his best friend Joey and his Brother-in-Law Jesse to come help him raise his three daughters (DJ, Stephanie, and Michelle) after his wife’s death. The show is a family-friendly show that tries to give some lessons and it is a funny show with many silly or funny situations happening to the family. Overall, the show is good, but there are many “girlfriend/boyfriend” situations that will need to be skipped or discussed with your kids. It is easy to tell just by looking at the episode descriptions which ones will need to be skipped and which ones might be ok. I would recommend watching the episodes before you show them to your family especially if you have young kids.

Warnings: girlfriend/boyfriend interactions, promiscuity and dating, kissing

In the first couple of seasons as the members of the family are getting used to each other the girls’ uncle Jesse is portrayed as a young, wild musician who rides a motorcycle. Part of this “wild” personality is that he is very obsessed with women and dating and so many of the episodes feature him going on a date with a new woman every episode, kissing, etc. This eventually changes when he meets and decides to marry Becky Donaldson and becomes much better, but then it is replaced with the young girls starting to have boyfriends, etc. Read the episode descriptions that come on the dvds or even the ones on Wikipedia and it will be clear which episodes focus on these relationships and which ones will be relatively clean.

Sometimes the episodes show the girls’ father objecting to this promiscuity or being worried about them when he hears that they are involved with boys, but generally he accepts it as inevitable, which is not the Muslim way of thinking about such relationships and parenting.

Ideas and Morals: pet dogs, eating pork, music and entertainment industry promoted

There are minor life details of the family’s life like owning a pet dog and eating pork that come up from time to time, but these are generally minor. The bigger kind of un-islamic ideal in the show is that, because all the adults in the family work in the entertainment industry (Jesse is a musician, Joey is a Comic, Danny and Becky host a tv show) this implicitly promotes the entertainment industry and none of the negatives of working in this industry are really shown in any honest detail.

There are two episodes that try to deal with this: once when Joey has a controlling boss and once when Jesse’s music takes him away from his family and makes him a little caught up in his own image, but this doesn’t go far enough into exploring the big problems and tends to kind of normalize working in the entertainment industry and being a ‘rock star’ and so on. We see this come through in some episodes where, for example, Stephanie is learning to dance and the parents don’t object to the very revealing outfits she’s wearing as a child and they don’t object to her goal of becoming a dancer or provide an alternative role model.

Messages: family, responsibility, sharing, kindness, etc. 

There are many positive messages that the show tries to portray – almost in every episode especially in the earlier seasons. The children and the adults around them learn a lot about coming together as a family, their responsibilities, and how to deal with many situations well. This is not always dealt with in the perfect Islamic way, of course, but it is overall pretty good and relevant.

 

Overall, this is a good show to watch as a family, as long as you are aware of the negative aspects and are able to skip the ‘dating’ episodes. With eight full seasons you will find many episodes that are good to watch. Be aware the of the issues and don’t miss this show! Also be aware that even with all the negatives this show is still much, much better than any current or new show that is on these days!

 

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