How Much Would These Famous TV Families Make Today?
There aren't many family sitcoms that get into heavy talk about money although there are a few exceptions, like "Roseanne". Vulture.com took a look at 17 sitcom families, and guessed how much they might make in today's dollars, using the salary averages.
Here's the list, along with highlights from Vulture's breakdown:
- The Brady Bunch – A California architect with 10 to 14 years of experience can make around $90,000 and if you add in Mrs. Brady's occasional freelance checks, you'll get a family income just shy of six figures.
- The Cosby Show – As an obstetrician in private practice in New York City, Cliff could expect to pull in about $250,000 a year, and Claire, a partner at her law firm, would make at least that much.
- All in the Family – Today, a loading-dock foreman can make around $50,000 a year, while Edith adds around $12 an hour as a part-time caretaker.
- The Jeffersons – These days, the owner of a dry-cleaning business can expect to take in around $30,000 per cleaner, so George Jefferson's chain of seven would net him more than $200,000 a year.
- Everybody Loves Raymond – Ray's character was a sports reporter at a real newspaper, called "Newsday". The job pays $90,000 a year.
- Roseanne – Dan and Roseanne bounced around a variety of different jobs. During Season One, Roseanne worked on the assembly line at a plastics company, a job that would pay around $18 an hour today if it still existed. She later quit and landed a waitressing gig, which pays $2 an hour plus tips. She eventually opened a restaurant, but profit margins in the restaurant industry are razor-thin. Meanwhile, Dan spent most of the show as a freelancer contractor, which would earn him roughly $50,000 a year.
- Leave It to Beaver – Nobody knows what Ward Cleaver actually did for a living. They once said that he worked for a trust company, and at one point his co-worker complained that he has a corner office. It's not a lot to go on, but it indicates that he'd make something in the low six-figure range today.
- The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air – Uncle Phil started the show as a law-firm partner, making at least in the mid-six figures and possibly in the millions, depending on how senior a partner he was. Aunt Viv is a professor at UCLA, which pays somewhere in the neighborhood of $200,000.
- Married... with Children – We actually know how much Al Bundy made in his job as a woman's shoe salesman: $12,000 a year, which comes out to $20,000 in 2018 money, though depending on commissions he could wind up taking home close to $40,000. Peggy never held a job for long.
- 7th Heaven – It's kind of hard to say how much a minister can make at a church like the one the Camdens had, maybe between $25,000 to $75,000 a year.
- Family Ties – Steven was the manager of a PBS station, and Elyse was an architect. Both jobs would pull in around $100,000 each today.
- Malcolm in the Middle – Hal is said to work in "systems management," and the median worker in systems management makes around $100,000 a year. Lois works at a drug store, which pays anywhere from $9 to $18 an hour, if she's an assistant manager.
- Black-ish – As an advertising executive, Dre makes somewhere in the six figures, while an anesthesiologist like Bow can command around $400,000.
- Modern Family – All three families are well-off. Phil makes more than $200,000 in real estate. As a lawyer, Mitchell probably makes somewhere around that number. Jay is a little less clear, but it's at least in the mid-six figures.
- Family Matters – Harriet was the elevator operator for the "Chicago Chronicle", and later became head of security for the paper, which would probably pay in the high five figures today. Later, she started working at a department store as a customer-service manager ($15 an hour), before being promoted to head of sales (more than $100,000).
Carl probably earned around $100,000 as a police sergeant, and got in the neighborhood of $120,000 by the time he was promoted to captain.
- Fresh Off the Boat – The average restaurant owner in Florida makes $79,000, and Louis seems to be doing better than that. Also, Jessica is probably making more than $45,000, which is the Florida median for real estate.
- Home Improvement – The median salary for a TV or radio host is $55,000. And as the host of "Tool Time", which is "the fourth-most-popular cable-based tool show in all of Michigan," you'd expect Tim to be making around that.