25 TV Dads we wish were ours

11 of 26

Photo: NBC

Steven Keaton – Family Ties

Steven Keaton was the baby boomer dad I wanted in my life in the mid-’80s. I know everybody thought Alex P. Keaton was the star of the show, but the bearded ex-hippie was my guy. He was smart and thoughtful, and he was one of the first television dads that listened to his wife, considered her opinion and often even deferred to her.  I loved how willing he was to be wrong, and not even be mad about it.

Family Ties followed two parents trying to reconcile their counter-culture past with their current suburban lifestyle. With four children, a mortgage, and regular jobs, they often felt like fish out of water. Michael J. Fox was Alex, their oldest, brief-case wielding conservative son who played the foil for a lot of their drama, as their ideologies and values clashed in every episode.

Steven was always exasperated and frustrated with Alex, but he was endlessly accepting of their differences and was there for him no matter what.  Steven was a safe place to land despite all the kooky shenanigans his kids got into, and they got into some pretty serious situations.  That endless support makes him one of the best TV dads ever.