We all had our favorite shows growing up. Keenan & Kel, Buffy, Doug, and Full House were must-watch television for us kids, but our parents probably hated them. When our shows were done, it was time for our moms to take over the remote. We’d always pretend to hate whatever they chose, but more often than not we ended up sitting on the couch throughout most of it.
These are some of the shows our moms loved, and we pretended to hate. Ultimately, though, they were some of our favorites and we still hold them in our hearts.
1. Murder, She Wrote
If you thought your love for Angela Lansbury stemmed from Beauty and the Beast, you’re wrong. It most likely came from your subconscious love of watching Murder, She Wrote with your mom. Even if you didn’t admit it, watching Jessica Fletcher seek out criminals in Cabot Cove was a highlight of your week.
2. Diagnosis Murder
Dick Van Dyke is a national treasure, and you probably loved this show because he reminded you of your Mary Poppins obsession. Fun fact: Van Dyke’s character name is Dr. Mark Sloan, which is then used in Grey’s Anatomy. Whether your mom watched for the crime or just to look at Barry Van Dyke, you were right there with her.
3. Law & Order
Sure, it probably wasn’t appropriate, but we all stuck around to watch Law & Order when our parents did. This one gets a second award for being a show we would secretly watch when our parents weren’t home or late at night when everyone was asleep.
4. Touched By An Angel
THIS. FREAKIN’. SHOW. I used to tell my mom I “hated it” and that I didn’t want to watch, but you can bet your bottom dollar I sat there and listened to every single piece of advice Della Reese was willing to throw at me.
5. I Dream of Jeannie
It’s most likely that your mom watched the reruns of this show, but that didn’t make it any less funny. You would pretend that it was too “old” or “vintage” for you to find it funny, but the reality was you stealthily ran to the TV set whenever you heard the opening credits.
This one is fair. Who didn’t want to know who shot J.R.?
6. Wheel of Fortune
After the evening news, but before Jeopardy, we were blessed with Wheel of Fortune. The show was great to watch, but what was not fun was listening to your mom yell out every possible word combination known to man. It did give us the ultimate hang-man cheat-sheet though…R-S-T-L-N-E.
7. Young and the Restless
Really any soap opera we loved to sit in on. So dramatic! So emotional! So cheesy! Soap operas were our mothers’s escape. They got sucked into the romance of it all before they were forced to deal with our dumb selves.
Reba came around when we were a little bit older, but it’s one of those shows that our moms wanted us to watch with them. It may not have been the height of comedic genius, but Barbara Jean was hilarious and Kyra hated everyone just as much as we do now.
9. 7th Heaven
It took us a few years to really get into this show, but mom sure did love the family values tied to 7th Heaven.
10. Murphy Brown
This show broke barriers, but we were probably out of the target audience range. That being said, a show about a recovering alcoholic who becomes a single mom was something never seen on television before, so they were probably just happy that anyone was watching.
11. Mad About You
We literally could not relate to any of the story lines as kids, but that didn’t matter. This show was so grown-up, so obviously us watching it meant we were grown-ups.
Now one of my favorite shows of all-time, there was something so endearing about the “rawness” of this show. I remember thinking I was watching a documentary, not a fictional show. Of course, young George Clooney appealed to everyone, so no one should be surprised that kids loved it.
13. Ally McBeal
Calista Flockhart getting stuck in a toilet is something every child can get behind. Plus who can forget the dancing baby scene? No one. This show was a TREASURE and we need to treat it as such.