25 Nearest and Dearest 4/25
Tanner/Katsopolis/Fuller Family (Full House)
The family that hugs each other, stays together. There’s no family quite like the Tanner/Katsopolis/Fuller family and there never will be. As a little kid, nothing glued me to the television the way Full House did and to this very day, this family is incredibly important to me. From the very first episode, Full House was about selflessly stepping up to help out, and if there’s one thing families are good at, it’s being there through the darkest moments and the happiest. And perhaps that’s why I loved this show so dearly — it is still to this day one of the most heartiest, happiest TV series in existence. Sometimes we need happy and in the Tanner/Katsopolis/Fuller household, it was everyone’s mission to create a loving, ridiculously wonderful environment.
For as long as I can remember, Full House was the show I’d watch before bed time. And even today at age 25 I find myself watching reruns after a long day. At this point I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ll probably never get tired of this show and that’s perfectly fine with me. It’s said best in Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants that it’s easiest to hurt the ones we love most because we know they’ll always love us. And as far as assumptions go, it’s safe to state that people who deeply adore one another will always forgive when they know the person’s intentions weren’t meant to harm.
Uncle Jesse would win greatest uncle award, but I’m going to have to give that to mine instead. And much like in the Tanner household, when my dad passed away, my uncle was there to help us through it all — frankly, if he weren’t in my life, I’m not entirely sure where I’d be today. I owe a lot to him but the love and faith he’s shown in me has given me strength in my darkest hours. And just as Aunt Becky was the missing piece of their family’s puzzle, my uncle’s wife makes us complete. When it comes down to Jesse’s relationships with the kids, there aren’t enough words to describe how commendable it is. Jesse wasn’t just their cool uncle, he was the person they could confide in and learn from. And Jesse had a distinct relationship with each of the kids which has always spoken so highly of his character. He’d gotten to know them for who they are and built a solid foundation based on what he knew. It essentially makes bonding that much more profound and extraordinary. There are no favorites in a family, but what deepens connections and makes them wonderful are the unique ways in which people bond with one another. Jesse was able to find that unique tone with each of the kids knowing just how he needed to respond to them in the wake of a crisis or a simple question. Personally, the one thing I’ll never forget is Jesse crying after saying goodbye to Michelle. Sometimes you don’t want to be away from family — you want to combine both your worlds and make them into one. And I’m sure though they would’ve liked more privacy, Jesse and Becky wouldn’t have it any other way at that point in their lives.
Just as Jesse had established gorgeously profound relationships with each of the girls, so did Becky. And essentially while no woman could ever take their mother’s place, Becky’s the only one who would come close to being the guidance they needed. It was always lovely to watch how kindly she’d give advice to the girls. Becky wasn’t just Jesse’s wife or their father’s co-host, she was an inspiration to the girls. She was there to remind of the fact that they should never do things because they felt pressured to but rather only if it feels right to. And to this day, it’s beautiful to see that she keeps the unique relationships she’s established with each of the sisters because she’s been there for them at the times they needed her most. And today, they can be there for her.
A father’s relationship with his girls is always incredibly special. And the way Danny Tanner took care of his three girls was exemplary. Danny did his best to make sure that each of their needs were met, but most importantly that he remained a part of their lives as a guide and a perpetual home. Danny was there to not only give them advice, but he was there to remind them of the things that matter in life — essentially keeping their feet on the ground. As all heroic fathers, Danny’s entire goal in life was to work hard for the good of his children but he never once let hard work take away from the quality time he’d spend with them and the rest of their family. And of course, Danny was always there to offer hugs. We could all use the hugs every so often.
Sometimes I forget that Joey isn’t actually related to anyone in the house because the amount he’s given to make sure they’re each happy is worthy of all the praises. Joey’s kindness was always admirable, but his inability to give up on trying to make them smile is what’s often made him stand out as a character. Joey’s done anything and everything he can to liven everyone’s moods and to make each day better than the one before. And while he was often the comedic relief in the house, if it ever came down to any of the girls, Jesse, Danny, or Becky needing him, he’d be there in a heartbeat. He’d stand by their side until their problems were solved with the utmost care and attentiveness. What Joey’s done for the Tanner family — very few would actually do and it’s essentially why it’s so easy to forget that he isn’t blood.
At some point, I was debating writing a separate article for Kimmy and DJ alone but then I figured Kimmy’s just as much a Tanner as anyone else and she essentially belongs in this one. Kimmy and DJ are one of the most well written female friendships to date showcasing that the best of friends love one another through thick and thin. Although Kimmy’s quirks weren’t always understood by the rest of the Tanner household, she was a part of them. She was a part of their family they’d never want to replace because she stood by DJ in a way no one else would. And it didn’t matter how often people questioned Kimmy because DJ knew that her heart and loyalty were irreplaceable. They were proven to be the best of friends through high school and college, but watching Kimmy step in to help DJ in Fuller House was perfect.
And contrary to what critics seem to think, Fuller House is phenomenal. I don’t want this to turn into a defense post because we all know I’d love to prove why it’s so great, but ultimately this show knows it’s cheesy. It knows it’s too much. And that’s why it’s amazing because heck yes, I want family hugs every two seconds. I will be that parent. In other words, Kimmy’s choice to step in and move in with DJ was perfect — a little unrealistic perhaps with the death of her husband, but nonetheless, you expected that out of her. You expected Kimmy to fight for DJ to the very end and to stand by her whenever she needed something. And in the same way you expect DJ to be weary of Fernando because no one gets to hurt her best friend and get away with it.
Kimmy and Stephanie have always been DJ’s best friends and the “She Wolf Pack” is everything I did not know I needed and more. When you’re growing up and changing, it isn’t always easy to be okay with your sister attempting to copy you, but DJ and Stephanie have come an incredibly long way from the kids they were. And the way the two love each other today is ideal. Sisters need to have each other’s back through everything. In the darkest hours they need to be able to confide in one another while being able to laugh together. And the two have reached that place beautifully revealing that where there’s love amongst sisters, they will be inseparable. Stephanie may be used to a wandering life filled with adventure, but at the end of the day, because her sister needed her more, there’s no where else she’d rather be. And the fact that they’ve each found comfort in one another in ways they never expected, home has become home again. Danny’s choice to leave the house with DJ was perfect and just what you’d expect from him. Allowing his daughters to take over in the house they grow up as they help raise DJ’s kids is exactly what’s expected from the Tanner family. Plus, their constant visits whenever they need them are perfect. Oh, and Danny Tanner’s wish came true — one of his grandson’s is just as much a neat freak as he is.
At the end of the day, it all comes down to the fact that families have a way of staying together. No matter how far, we’re actually closer than ever. They have and will always come first to each other and that’s been a proven fact since the very beginning. Full House is special. It’s always been special because no matter what’s going on, watching an episode has always put me in a better mood. And the same goes for Fuller House to be honest, the bonds that have been fortified through the years and the new ones that are in the making continuously bring joy. I’ll always be grateful for the fact that this series has always reminded me of the fact that it’s okay to still be attached to my family — because no matter how old I get, a hug from one of them will make even the darkest days 100x brighter. And that’s the case with this family, no matter what happens, they will always be each other’s home.
P.S. If you’re interested, I had a lot to say about Uncle Jesse and Aunt Becky for the 25 Love Stories portion of #100DaysofFanFavorites. And you can find that here.