Good Neighbors (The Good Life) is probably my most favorite show of all time. Why? It seems to embody what both a good friendship and a good marriage are, in various situations and personalities. (with some excellent humor, as that is part of both a good friendship and good marriage) With just a few characters, they show quite a variety of relationships. The Good’s marriage is quite different from the Ledbetter’s, but they are both examples of how a marriage can work and become an excellent friendship. Then there is Jerry and Tom’s close buddy relationship, which even though Tom’s lifestyle has taken a sudden and drastic change in the opposite direction of where Jerry is headed, their friendship has definitely stayed in tact and no worse for the wear they put it through. And Margo and Barbara’s seemingly more fragile friendship always comes through, perfectly balancing the two extreme lifestyles and attitudes. So with just four main characters, they are able to show how many different relationship dynamics work. And as a result of the depth of the characters, the wit is much more realistic than just a series of one-liners and setup/punch-lines. That is why I can laugh again and again at the wonderful humor.
Tom and Babara are absolutely loveable as the middle aged couple who are looking for "it". They realise that "it" is being out of the daily grind of making a living. How do they get "it"? They go self sufficient using their own back garden.
The scenario seems quite real and is even feasible on the land size they had available.
I perhaps even dream of doing it myself one day.
To contrast the strong marital harmony and bliss of Tom and Babara we have their next door neighbours, who are also their best friends.
Suffering from success and money their relationship is strained by the meaningless everyday.
This strengthens our feelings and support for Tom and Babara in their endeavours.
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