August 28, 2015
Sometimes, objects in movies and TV shows can become just as much of a star as the characters. It can be a vehicle, a weapon, a gadget, or a robot; heck, it can even be something as seemingly mundane as a sofa or a sofa bed.
Wait, what was that? Couches in TV series and films are ordinary? A lot of people, especially movie and TV geeks, beg to differ. These pieces of furniture are pop culture icons that will be remembered for many years to come.
Living rooms are staple settings in sitcoms. Friends, which is arguably the most popular sitcom of all time, didn’t avoid the cliché: it helped build it. That’s alright though, because that’s what put this particular sofa into the same limelight as the characters.
This orange couch just happened to be there; it didn’t have any significance on its own. However, because it is where Rachel, Ross, Chandler, Joey, Phoebe, and Monica spent a lot of time talking issues out, gossiping, and even singing some tunes, the spot where many important plot points happened, the couch in Central Perk was able to achieve icon status.
“Hangin’ out down Mr. Foreman’s basement” – that should’ve been the first line of That 70’s Show’s theme. “The same old thing we did last week, not a thing to do” – the next lines were pretty accurate, as Eric, Donna, Jackie, Michael, Hyde, and Fez do basically just that – just talking, eating, or drinking – on the basement couch.
It’s a dirty, shabby, and unstylish sofa that greatly pales in comparison with the one in Mr. Foreman’s living room, but it has become an important part in the lives of these teenagers in Wisconsin.
The Big Bang Theory, despite being chock full of references that are geekier, more intelligent, and more obscure than the usual, still cannot escape the “hanging out on the couch” trope. However, what separates the nerds’ sofa from those in other sitcoms is that it isn’t just something they sit on.
In fact, it actually helps further define Sheldon as a character, as Doctor Cooper has a particular spot in the sofa, which is the leftmost part of the couch. Why that place? Sheldon has his reasons, all of which are explained in the most complicated way possible. Well, whatever they may be, one thing’s for sure: Sheldon’s spot is proof that he is a single point of consistency in an ever changing world.
The longest-running sitcom on TV happens to be an animated one: The Simpsons.
For twenty-five years Homer has been doing ridiculous things, eating donuts, and drinking beer; Lisa’s been trying to save the world and smart-mouthing everyone; Bart’s been getting into all sorts of trouble; Maggie’s been sitting in the crib; and Marge has been looking out for them and cleaning up after their messes. Together, as one big happy family, they’ve been racing to sit on their couch before their favorite TV show starts. Kind of makes you wonder what show they’re watching. And you have to admit, that’s one tough couch.
Fictional people, just like us, need something to sit on and a comfortable place to comfortably hang out too. These fictional couches, which have been giving these characters a place to chill out in, have become a part of our lives, just like their real-life counterparts in our living rooms.