Discover the most popular TV show the year you were born

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1972: All in the Family

All in the Family was a classic sitcom that aired on CBS from 1971 until 1979. It was followed by the spin-off series Archie Bunker’s Place, which continued on for four more years after All in the Family went off the air. The show was about Archie Bunker, a working-class family man whose head was filled with bigoted ideas about race and plenty of other social issues. The show used their ignorant protagonist to deal with important issues that were unheard of on television back in those days, including racism, homosexuality, women’s liberation, sexual assault, the Vietnam War, and so much more. The show tried to bring humor to these tough subjects, and became one of the most influential American sitcoms ever because of it.

All in the Family struggled in the ratings for its first season in 1970, but by season 2, the show had found its footing, in a big way. The series became #1 in the ratings on the Nielsen charts by its second season, and then stayed there for five consecutive seasons, becoming one of only three American shows to do so (with The Cosby Show and American Idol).

This show has gone down in history as one of the greatest, and has landed on many “all time” lists over the years, from TV Guide’s 100 Greatest Episodes of All Time to the Writers Guild of America’s Best Written TV series list.