Bravo completed a comprehensive five-part series that focused on famous television characters that have become a part of the fabric of American pop culture.
Bravo’s The 100 Greatest TV Characters
These TV characters broke out of the pack to emerge as pop icons. I, like I’m sure many others, played Monday morning quarterback and noticed who didn’t make the list.
Number 78. was Rob & Laura Petrie, but there was no Buddy & Sally.
Number 58. was Barney Miller but there was no Fish.
Number 42. was Laverne & Shirley but there was no Lenny & Squiggy.
Here is my list of characters that I think should have made the Top 100.
The Mertzs (William Frawley & Vivian Vance) from "I love Lucy". The Ricardos needed them so much that they took Fred & Ethel with them when they moved to Connecticut.
Carlton the Doorman (The Voice of Lorenzo Music) from "Rhoda". Perhaps there should be a special category for disembodied voices that would include Charlie (John Forsythe) from "Charlie’s Angels" and K.I.T.T. (William Daniels) from "Knight Rider". In the same theme...
Robot (Bob May) from "Lost in Space". More people quote this character, "Danger Will Robinson" than have seen the show. Speaking of artificial life forms...
Lt. Commander Data (Brent Spiner) from "STAR TREK The Next Generation". The most human character on the show was an android. Since I listing non-human characters...
Arnold Ziffel (Arnold the Pig) from "Green Acres". I chose Arnold to represent all of the citizens of Hooterville in "Green Acres" "Petticoat Junction" none of who made the list. Nor did the characters from another Paul Henning show...
The Clampetts (Buddy Ebsen, Irene Ryan, Donna Douglas and Max Baer Jr.) from "The Beverly Hillbillies". Good, bad or indifferent to urbanites this family put a face on rural America.
Larry Tate (David White) from Bewitched. I’ve had many bosses like Larry and a few neighbors like Gladys Cravits (Alice Pearce & Sandra Goulde)
Mr. Carlin (Jack Riley) from "The Bob Newhart Show", "St. Elsewhere", "ALF" etc. He put a face on TV crazy. PS: His first name is Elliot.
Fred Flintstone (Alan Reed) from "The Flintstones". If Homer Simpson is Number 5 and Ralph Kramden is Number 2 then Fred should be in between them on the Darwin sitcom chart.
Rochester Van Jones (Eddie Anderson) from "The Jack Benny Program". Years before Benson (Number 68), he was a man of color who worked as a butler but was not subservient and proved to be smarter than his boss.
To quote Homer, Bart and Lisa Simpson,
LISA (looking at Abraham Lincoln's hat): America's greatest citizen summed up in one piece of clothing.
HOMER: Fonzie's jacket!
BART: Who's Fonzie?
HOMER: Who's Fonzie?! Don't they teach you anything in school? He freed the squares!
Fonzie was Number 4.