Family Matters, Teen Angel, Full House- The 90′s TGIF Lineup Revisited [Flashback]

May 12th, 2012 // 1 Comment

While recently discussing the need for a TGIF-dedicated television station, a friend asked me, “what is TGIF?” After determining that she was indeed asking a serious question, I was filled with shock and horror at the thought that one of my dear friends did not have the opportunity as a child to experience the best Friday night lineup to ever exist, TGIF.

TGIF was the prime-time programming block on ABC that featured shows like Boy Meets World, Family Matters, and Full House. Just as Saved By The Bell redefined our Saturday mornings, so did TGIF redefine Friday night. I counted down the minutes to 8pm on Friday because I couldn’t get enough of the Tanners or the Winslows and I know I’m not the only one who considers Boy Meets World an important part of my childhood. The thought that there are people out there who have not had this great programming shared with them is disheartening.

For those lonely people who were not fortunate enough to grow up glued to the TV, and to those who, like me, worshiped TV programming as a child, I bring you a gallery of shows that had life on TGIF. Browse the gallery to check out 11 of the shows from the coveted lineup.

 

 

By Cynthia Rollins
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  1. Cynthia, I signed up fir this site just to thank you for writing this article! It was short, to the point and the gallery captures the spirit of TGIF perfectly. There wasn’t anything like it before it came along and sure as hell hasn’t been anything like it since! Paul Lee is trying to revive the block currently to mixed results but I think to have any real shot at totally reviving it he needs a full two hour block for this. Last Man Standing is a great start towards that. Malibu Country was another step in the right direction. The neighbors was a few steps back. This Cristela show won’t cut it and I doubt it’ll last half a season. He’s partially there but has a ways to go. The feeling atmosphere and magic are there in LMS you can feel it so he’s got a good start.

    What you said about the younger kids not “getting” TGIF is exactly true. It’s incredibly hard to explain fully the full experience TGIF was. It was bigger than life at the height of its popularity. It’s what we suffered through the week to get through and when the block was over we wanted to just jump ahead to the next Friday. It was the characters, the shows themselves..all of it just smashed together into this incredible weekend kick off party no other networks could emulate. I wish the younger generation could experience it..I feel sorry for them they weren’t there for it. Describing it is one thing, actually living during it was another.

    Flipping through the slides I recognized all the shows in there. I’d completely forgotten about, but remembered instantly On Our Own which didn’t last long at all. Sister, Sister was unbelievably part of TGIF too for a little while, though I’m trying to remember if it premiered in September of ’94 with the other three shows Season Premieres or if it started mid season. I always felt Clueless didn’t belong in that block and it didn’t mesh too well. TGIF stopped for a while after Boy Meets World ended and started back up for a bit again a few years later. I was not big on 3 of the last 4 shows to be part of the full TGIF-2 Guys, A Girl, and a Pizza Place, Married to the Kellys, Hope and Faith, and Complete Savages were the final 4 shows in the block I can remember. I loved Complete Savages! It was a perfect fit for TGIF-funny, wacky, and had the spirit and atmosphere of the old days. I really wish ABC had given it a little more time to grow. Had it premiered 5, 6 years sooner I truly believe it woulda lasted several years.

    With Girl Meets World’s outstanding debut ratings, I’m hoping Paul will wisen up and get that moved to ABC next year. He needs it right now..the network needs it right now. The original series was a huge part of an important period in ABC’s history and not many chances like this come often. It can anchor the block followed by one more year of LMS. John Stamos is trying to pitch a Full House type project to them..both Patrick Duffy and Suzanne Somers want to restart Step By Step as well. Those two can fill the 2nd hour of the block. Season after try rebooting Perfect Strangers and a spin off of Urkel. This kind of line up is exactly what he’s been wanting. He doesn’t wanna skew too young or old but these are everyone shows. Take these people up on their offers, Paul. If you don’t you’ll regret it and you may as well give up this revival idea. They want it back, we the audience want it back, just do it!

    CBS tried it’s Friday Night Block Party in 1998, anchored by Family Matters and Step By Step. Right idea, right shows, a few years too late. Everyone was getting older and into college then. I only recently saw the last season of both shows myself. Both of which deserved Series Finaies. There was also Meego with Bronson “Balki” Pinchot that failed because we expected Balki not an alien. The fourth shoe, The Gregory Hines Show was a really fun little show I’m glad Gregory got to do before passing away. Les had the right idea a few years too late 3-4 years sooner I think that Block Party woulda lasted a while!

    NBC kept wanting its own TGIF too but they never got anything off the ground towards that development wise from what I know. Thanks again for the article on the best block of TV shows ever!

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