Family Ties

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NBC (ended 1989)

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gwactuary

User Score: 3004

SUBMIT REVIEW

Family Ties Fan Reviews (31)

8.6
out of 10
Average
838 votes
  • Family Ties was the opitome of a situation comedy. If you hadn't been in that particular situation, then you wouldn't laugh. This is perhaps why it never received much love and still isn't getting it in syndication...

    6.5
    Family Ties was the opitome of a situation comedy. If you hadn't been in that particular situation, then you wouldn't laugh. This is perhaps why it never received much love and still isn't getting it in syndication.

    My favorite episode isn't even a funny episode. It wasn't really meant to be though. "My name is Alex" was shot much like a play and deals with the effect of a friend's death on Alex.

    Some of the stronger episodes in the show were when the focus was on Alex and Ellen's relationship.

    Ultimately, the show was just too PG for the masses. It didn't paint an accurate enough picture of the "me" generation.

    The finale was half comedy, half introspective drama with Elyse coming to grips with the reality of Alex moving to New York.
  • I miss this show!

    7.0
    Please someone bring it back w I have so many memories watching it with my little brother
  • great show in his time

    7.8
    i watched this show in the 80's , it was fun then but it is not fun anymore.Family Ties was a more quiet and intellectual series about Baby Boomers who had older Gen Xer kids. The show used intelligent witty humour instead of sight gags and slapstick comedy.
    On my list comes second after the Cosby show.
    I loved it when Alex told his dad to join the eighties, and then thought about it more and said more emphatically, "Join the seventies!"
    The show had many serious moments as well though, dealing with death and terminal diseases amongst others. In fact, the episode with him reminiscing about a friend who had just died (I forget the title) won awards for best TV show in the year it which it was broadcast.
  • Great show due to Michael J Fox

    8.0
    The show was supposed to focus on Steven & Elyse Keaton as the children were in the background
    But then it started focusing on the children
    You have to go with what the audience wants
    And made a star out of a young then unknown Canadian actor named Michael J Fox
    Very good writing and acting
    As well as chemistry mixed with social issues
    Too bad from what I hear Meredeth Baxter never got along with Fox off screen
    But still a good show!
  • Amid all the craptastic 80s sitcoms, Family Ties stands out as one of the few that I enjoyed.

    8.3
    Family Ties was a personal favorite of mine as a kid. I still remember quite well the final episode back when I was only 10 years old. Since then, any time I knew it was on in syndication I've had to catch it. It managed to be funny and fresh, unlike the other stale shows of the day such as Growing Pains and Who's the Boss (which come to mind immediately).

    Alex P. Keaton and his values/beliefs clash with his parents was at the core of the show. His parents were liberal ex-hippies, while he was the young Reagonite conservative who idolized Richard Nixon. The show had many serious moments as well though, dealing with death and terminal diseases amongst others. In fact, the episode with him reminiscing about a friend who had just died (I forget the title) won awards for best TV show in the year it which it was broadcast.

    It was the quintessential 80s show and it was only fitting that it bowed out in the last year of the decade. Somehow this show just wouldn't have seemed right in the 90s. I miss it and I hope someday they would have a reunion special. With Fox's disease, I doubt that's going to happen any time soon.
  • Family Ties is one of the best family dramas to ever grace TV.

    8.4
    Family Ties focused on almost everything about growing up. FIrst you had the snobby teenager, the adolescent teenager, and of course Michael P Keaton who is in a whole another class in himself. The show was absolutely fabulous. This is the kind of show you can watch at any time and find enjoyment. Family Guys is a classic family sitcom at its finest

  • Ahead of its time

    9.0
    I was watching it again through online streaming this past two weeks having a bit of Marathon, I watched it back in Indonesia in 1985 when it aired there but only started watching them from season 2 onwards at the time (coz I only knew Steven with the beard haha) anyways when I finally caught up with season 1, I though that the show was even better in the first season, it dealt with heavy materials that at the time maybe was "taboo" , political, sex, emancipation, alcoholism, corporate greed etc and those stuff that back then was not normally aired on public TV, and the materials that was being showcased still resonates to this decade . At the time when I watched it though I was 8 years old at the time I only knew the show as a family show. Now re-watching it I realized that the show was so much more than that and made me love this show even more. I hope that they would air this show on prime-time re-runs so that the today's generation could learn a lot because like I said Family Ties was ahead of its times
  • 'Family Ties' is great and even though I haven't seen that many episodes, I still rank it among my top ten favorite TV shows.

    9.0
    This was the ultimate show of the 1980's when it ran for several seasons on NBC-TV(from 1982-1989). What more could you expect for one of the best hippiest/political families of that era which was mixed in which started in the middle of the Reagan era,and with the series ending at the beginning of the Bush administration. Besides,it was part "All In The Family" without the bigotry or the downside of it. In all one great series.

    The series when it aired sprunged two made for TV movies and also one of the most intense final episodes ever aired(the death of Steven Keaton) when the show ended its run in the spring of 1989. Here you have Michael Gross(as Steven Keaton) Meredith Baxter-Birney (as Elsie Keaton) and there three adorable children, the design shopping boy hungry Mallory (Justine Bateman), the baby girl of the family who wanted to go her own way but wanted to grow up and be a kid Tina (played by Tina Yothers), and the political and conservative son Alex(played by Michael J. Fox) who was a Republican and was a fan of both Presidents Reagan and Nixon.

    This sitcom became the launching pod for Micheal J. Fox, who during this series had several hit feature films that were box-office giants (the "Back To The Future" series and the films "Teen Wolf" and "The Secret Of My Success.

    The show's theme song,"What About Us",was done by legendary musical artists Johnny Mathis and Deniece Willams which was a top 10 hit on Billboard's charts during the 80's.
  • Everybody loves Alex!

    9.0
    This classic show of the 80's featured two hippy era parents, one pretty, but ditzy daughter (forever loved by next door neighbor, Skippy), one completely normal daughter, and the ever-loveable, intelligent, staunch conservative, suit-wearing, Republican son, Alex. This show represented wholesome family ties (hence the name!) and such a wide variety of characters that the storylines were alternating tender and hilarious. While Alex got most of the great punch lines, it was Steven and Elyse's mind boggling reactions to their son's train of thought that were just as entertaining. This show was both timely and timeless. The rest of the cast added wondrously to the show. Though everybody loved Alex, this was truly a wonderful ensemble that helped create an unforgettable show.
  • one of my alltime faves growing up.

    9.0
    The show that made Michael J Fox a star. Classic 80s TV. The all too smart Alex Keaton & his constant squabbles with his hippy mindset parents & his two sisters Mallory, the typical girls girl & Jennifer, who was my favorite on the show because she had a combo of brains, looks & humour. Should rate on everyones top 10 shows list of all time.
  • Family Ties was a great serie!

    9.0
    I loved Family Ties!! I saw that the serie is available on DVD, but I don\'t know if I can buy it in the Netherlands. I hope I can, because I would love te see the episodes again. The most funny person in the serie I think, was Steve, the father. Mallory also was one of my favourites. She was not so very clever, that made her funny. When I think of Family Ties, the word cosy coms to my mind. When I watched the show, I always imagined how it would be like to live in that family, in that cosy house.
  • Actually, a wonderful show.

    9.1
    "Family Ties" was my brother's favorite show while he was growing up. He would go off and play while "The Cosby Show" was on, but come running at 8:30 to watch Michael J. Fox & company. He never missed an episode.

    I am writing this instead of him because he suffered from severe depression, and committed suicide. "Family Ties" and MJF were some of the few things that brightened up his otherwise dark life. (Side note: "Back to the Future", which I took my brother to see for his 13th birthday, was the ONLY movie to ever make him laugh out loud, and for that I will forever thank Robert Zemeckis and MJF.)

    The show was different from anything else on TV at the time or since. The chemistry between the stars was wonderful; the writing was spot-on. I still enjoy watching any reruns that are aired. My favorite episode will always be "A, My Name is Alex".
  • show about a family whose oldest son is very smart

    9.3
    this show is about two people from the sixties falling in love raising a family with 2 boys and 2 girls the oldest boy is very smart in politics and money matters while the oldest girl is smart when it comes to clothes and not much else having a boy friend who rides a motorcycle and drives the parents crazy the next girl is in to sports and not much else and the little boy is just cute
  • Wonderful

    9.5
    I loved this show. I started watching it at the end of its run, but still loved it enough to continue watching as it was a rerun. Perfect family show and it is still unlike all other family shows. The chemistry between all the actors/actresses is amazing. They were all a perfect fit and all so believable.
  • An awesome show

    9.5
    I loved the politics of Alex contrasted with those of his parents - a constant thread throughout the show, tempered only by Mallory's simple, "Have a nice day" philosophy. She was the only family member who ever had a chance of voting for a third party candidate! Sometimes wisdom comes from the most interesting of places. On Thursday nights at 8:30 PM sharp we got the typical Hegelian treatment with Marxist philosophy from Mom and Dad and Good Ol' Boy Limbaughesque rugged individual flag waving from Alex; and then Mallory saved the day with her candor and simple desire to chat about clothes, shoes, shopping and Nick. It was a fun show. Jennifer was the baby at first, but a cute addition nonetheless. Somebody had to put chocolate chips in the scrambled eggs! The little boy was a good touch, extending the life of the show by providing amo for Fox's character's political humor.

    I loved it when Alex told his dad to join the eighties, and then thought about it more and said more emphatically, "Join the seventies!"

    One night a week Americans got to sit in front of their TV's and take our two-party system a little less seriously. It's never too late to do that, so bring on the DVD's!
  • definitely gonna watch this show all over again!

    10
    Family Ties' is a wonderful show and it's one my top three favorite TV shows of all time. The whole actors and crew are great! Very good script and it's pretty hilarious and truly enjoyable in the half hour of air time. The story is fast moving and very entertaining. Eventhough it's almost more than 2 decades old, it can still be classified as one of the best comedy show aired in the television history. I remember I purchased a copy at . Thought I got scammed because it was exactly 2 weeks and my order didn't arrived. Well, the company showed honesty and said that my product was mishandled. They still delivered that product and I was happy to see that the package came in excellent condition. The quality is superlative. Now I enjoy watching Michael J Fox again! Lol Each episode of this show turned out to be great because of the good comedy! Simply love it!
  • perfect

    10
    I started watching this on the Hub network, and this is great. Michael J. Fox is great as Alex Keaton, Michael Gross is great as patriarch Steven Keaton, and of course, the female actresses (Meredith Baxter-Birney, Justine Bateman, and Tina Yothers) are great too. The plots, for the most part, are relatable to those watching and many episodes are very funny. All the characters are good and none really annoy me. Classic TV Show right here.
  • classic

    10
    Steven and Elyse Keaton were two hippies with liberal viewpoints who had married during the 1960s. The young couple had hoped their children would adopt the same values. How wrong they were, especially in the case of oldest son Alex. "Family Ties," which was based in Columbus, explored the relationship between Steven (a public television station manager) and Elyse (an architect) and their three children, Alex, Mallory and Jennifer. Though all three had espoused conservative viewpoints, none was ever so more obvious than 16-year-old Alex (who usually went by his full name, Alex P. Keaton). Alex was an avid Reagan-devotee and card-carrying Young Republicans Club member who sauntered through the house in a shirt and tie and hung a picture of William F. Buckley over his bed. But as intelligent and over-achieving as Alex was, Mallory was as underachieving and slacker; she was more into shopping and cute guys. Jennifer was the precocious youngster who just wanted to be a normal kid (and excepting for her Republican-like views, was for the most part). Skippy Handleman, one of Alex's best friends, was a geeky next-door neighbor with an unrequited crush on Mallory. During the 1984-1985 season, Elyse gave birth to Andrew, her and Steven's fourth child; Alex quickly took his young brother under his wing, and before long, Andrew was reading the Wall Street Journal over his Froot Loops cereal. As the years passed, Alex graduated from high school (as saluditarian) and pursuing a financial degree from Leland College; it was there he met his first serious girlfriend, the beautiful Ellen Reed (played by Fox's future wife, Tracy Pollan). After that relationship ended, Alex met psychology major Lauren Miller. Meanwhile, Mallory (who was in serious danger of flunking out of high school) found love in the form of Rambo-wannabe and high school-dropout Nick Moore, whom Steven and Elyse (at least initially) strongly disapproved of; Alex disliked the motorcycle-riding Nick even more. Mallory, however, did graduate from high school and became a fashion design major at Grant College; Nick also obtained his general-equivalency diploma. While there was time for fun and laughs, many episodes explored serious topics, such as teen pregnancy, censorship, addiction to pills, the effects racial minority homeowners have on property values and grieving the loss of a close friend. Other episodes dealt with Steven's distant relationships with his own family, particularly his brother, Robert, while plenty of episodes presented flashbacks of either earlier episodes featuring the Keaton offspring as young children. By the time the series wrapped up, Alex accepts his dream job offer ... a job on New York's Wall Street
  • The 1980's at it's best. You have to love Alex as a young Reagan Republican.

    10
    The 1980's at it's best. You have to love Alex as a young Reagan Republican. Great family sit-com from the 80's. This is one of the classic shows from the 80's and would rank right up there with The Cosby Show. Michael J. Fox was the star of the show as Alex P. Keaton. He was an ultra conservative personality and a delight to watch. He often got the best of his parents who were played by Meredith Baxter Birney as Elyse Keaton and Michael Gross as Steven Keaton. Alex also had two sisters and a brother. They were played by Justine Bateman as Mallory Keaton, Tina Yothers as Jennifer Keaton and Brian Bonsall as Andrew Keaton.I loved this show then and I love it now. i can't wait to buy the DVD's some day.
  • Ranks as an all-time favorite

    10
    This is not a review - it's a personal testament. If you want a review, read someone else's. The show speaks for itself.

    As I also am a political conservative in a liberal climate, as I also am an over-achiever who had little interest in frivolity, I found Michael J. Fox's portrayal of Alex P. Keaton to be the closest thing to a character mirror I have seen on any TV show ever.

    As I also am a Parkinson's patient, I simply cannot watch an episode of Family Ties without perceiving that I myself am part of the cast.

    As an added note, I think it's touching that Fox actually married his Ellen-Reed girlfriend character.

    I prefer that APK not be cast as so money-indulgent - contrary to popular stereotype, economic conservatives simply don't think like that. I would prefer that Justine Bateman and Scott Valentine not be cast as such ditzes, but some of the comedy their characters produced was great.



    The contrast of Alex, against the more normally motivated and more liberal, but equally smart Jennifer was striking.

    And the entire show was an inspiration of a coherent family unit - something we need much more of on TV.
  • This warm, funny sitcom needs to be released on DVD!

    10
    I love this show with a passion. All the characters are so endearing, and the actors who play them do so with such skill and warmth, that you tend to forget that you're only watching actors perform on a half-hour sitcom!

    I have this whole series on a pile of old video tapes, and I can't wait for it to be released on DVD! How can Paramount hold on to such a beloved classic? What are they waiting for?

    I can't believe it's been over 20 years since "Family Ties" first went on the air. It's continued popularity only shows how love, laughter and family ties (pun intended) remians on the top of our list of important things, decade after decade.
  • I loved Family Ties. I have been watching it since it first started. I liked Jennifer Keaton played by Tina Yothers because she is one of my favorite characters in the show.

    10
    Family Ties was one of the first of a wave of family comedies that emerged in the 1980's. With a rocky start in the ratings, Family Ties rose to number 2 after it was placed in the prized time-slot right after The Cosby Show and remained there from 1984 until 1987. The series centered around the Keaton family, Steven and his wife Elyse.

    For years the main characters have remained in the story. Others came and went sometimes for short periods and sometimes for many episodes.

    They helped to make the story more exciting.
    Some of the main chracters were Alex, Elyse, Mallory, Andrew, Jennifer and Steven.

    Each episode was a story on its own but it formed part of the whole story.
  • Steven and Elyse had four children. Alex loved money, Nixon and Reagan. Mallory loved to talk on the phone, shop and go out with boys. Jennifer and Andy were the younger siblings. Skippy their neighbor was in love with Mallory. He was very sweet and carin

    10
    Family Ties was a wonderful show. I loved it then and I still do now. The family was so great to watch. My favorite part of the show was the interactions between Mallory and Skippy. Skippy loved Mallory although Mallory didn\'t love him. He tried so hard to get her to like him and go out with him. I think Nick was the one part of the show that was a bad idea. I think that Mallory and Skippy should have been together instead of having Nick be with Mallory.
    The situations the family got into were always entertaining.
  • funny show

    10
    I saw repeats of this a while back i dont remember much except that it was funny and interesting at the same time. This is what put Michael J. Fox on the map. Too bad it was canceled but all good shows end sooner or later. If you ever see repeats watch it.
  • One of the funniest shows that was on tv in the 80's.

    10
    Family Ties was not like the more boisterous shows of its era like Three's Company or The Cosby Show. And it certainly is not like the modern day sitcoms with constant audience cat calls with the hootin' and hollerin'. Family Ties was a more quiet and intellectual series about Baby Boomers who had older Gen Xer kids. The show used intelligent witty humour instead of sight gags and slapstick comedy. I must disagree with others who say the episode with Alex grieving over his recently deceased friend. That was the WORST episode(s) of the entire series! I didn't care one bit about Alex's unseen friend that we never knew.

    People may say that the creators were tying to make a statement about the greed and materialism of the 80s by having flower power children from the 1960s raising teenagers and children in the 1980s, but I always saw them portraying the liberals/Democrats in a bad light while propping up the conservatives/Republicans. The parents Steven and Elyse, are made out to be the old school way of doing things. The hip, young and cool kids Alex, Mallory and to a lesser degree Jennifer and Andy, are made out to be the new way of thought. The kids were nearly always right and the parents were seen as dim witted old fools. A reverse All in the Family, indeed. The kids here are about Republican individualisim, and the more modern hip way of doing things in the 80s, versus the crusty old bleeding heart liberal "peace corp volunteer" way of approaching life that were the ex-hippie parents. So I do not believe at all that Family Ties was anti-conservative and anti-80s.

    But my God, how time flies. For instance it is interesting that Family Ties premiered in 1982, with ex-hippies raising 80s teenagers/children. If we do the math, then the frontline Gen Xers that were Alex and Mallory's age would today be in their late 30s and would be the ones raising teenagers and children! Back in the 80s the parents Steven and Elyse seemed like regular "grown ups" to me, its only now in my own adult hindsight do I realize that if they were hippies in the 1960s then they must have most likely been young parents of teenagers because they were still in their 30s (and not yet middle aged) when the show first started 1982. Regarding the kids on the show,---Alex was in college through most of the series, and looked about 16 in 1982, with Mallory probably 15 and Jennifer looked about 9 or 10 years old. So now it's obviously already 2005, over 20 years later!!! Family Ties was about generation gaps in the 80s, but those older, frontline teenagers from the 80s are already 37-40 years old today. Eh, I guess we all have to get old and Gen X wasn't going to stay cool forever! ;)

  • American family teaches America how to be an American family

    9.0
    Another show that i find magical, special, unique, off the wall. All these, make this show such an amazing piece of art. The stories are always so simple, yet so moving and powerful, i could relate to Alex and his love for money and this was another reason to watch, i think we became one in some kind of crazy way. If i could encompass the show in just one word that would have to be "Love", you could feel these people were really in love with each other and it showed through the screen. Great clean fun for the family unlike most of todays sitcoms.
  • I Loved this show back then and Still do Now!

    10
    anytime i watch this show on TV Land brings back memories of when i was 4yrs old sitting in the living room with my folks and watching this show, I had my first Childhood crush on Michael J. Fox too and i still do to this day. Michael J. Fox, Michael Gross and the Rest of the Cast were great together! There will never be a show as good as this one.
  • The one "family comedy" teenagers would actually like to watch.

    10
    Family Ties is such a funny show! I've it since I saw reruns when I was six or seven and I still like watching now that I'm a teenager. Of the "family classics" my parents talk about, family ties is one of the few I actually like It deals with real-life situations that regular teenagers face on an everyday basis, but puts a hilarious twist on it. Between Mallory, Alex, and Jennifer, the audience really connects with their personalities. It is a must-see for all ages, anf families. Definitely one of my all time favorite shows to watch with family and friends.
  • This show was great, back when shows had meaning, they didn't try to force a view down your throat in fact they had different views and mocked them all.

    10
    I think this show was one of those like the Cosby show were there was always a lesson involved, but it still was good anyways because the jokes were funny for the time, and actors were also good. I said before they made fun of different views and tried to show the good of different views as well. The characters did that anyways, I can't say that about the actors in real life. It was a typical 80's primetime sit-com, it was good for the whole family and was entertaining to watch. They also had some episodes that were a bit more serious, and they were just as good as the regular episodes.
  • Without a doubt, one of the best television sitcoms of the 1980s which made the entire cast household names and launched Michael J. Fox into superstardom.

    9.0
    The Keaton family, Steven,(Michael Gross) Elyse, (Meredith Baxter Birney) Alex, (Michael J. Fox) Mallory, (Justine Bateman) Jennifer (Tina Yothers) and Andrew (Brian Bonsall) became one of the best known and best-loved television families when their show began airing on 22nd September, 1982. Reminiscent of a 50s family in an 80s setting, the Keatons were a typical American family who had more than their fair share of ups and downs, most of them hilarious to the point of being side-splitting.

    Perfect comic timing and excellent writing as well as a string of talented regulars and guest stars such as Courtney Cox Arquette, Scott Valentine, Tom Hanks and Mark Price, kept the laughs coming from the first till the last episode. Michael J. Fox launced a highly impressive movie and television career after amassing a huge following among the show's loyal viewers. The names of Alex, Mallory and Jennifer were familiar to an entire generation of viewers and now, with the seasons moving to DVD, the show can be enjoyed all over again by old fans as well as grabbing a whole bunch of new ones! If you like good, clean, hilarious family fun, then "Family Ties" is a must-see series.
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