‘The Andy Griffith Show’: Here’s Where Andy Ranks in TV Guide’s ‘50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time’

by Madison Miller

Everyone has their own personal favorite TV dad. For some, it’s more of the classical family sitcom dad who works all day and is the perfect family man. This is how many people see Andy Taylor from “The Andy Griffith Show.”

For others, it’s the more oddball dads who live more extreme lives or have more outlandish humor. It may even be the sitcom dad who works all day and sits on the couch with a beer at home most of the time.

For fans of “The Andy Griffith Show,” Andy was a prized father-figure. In fact, he ranks as No. 8 on the TV Guide’s list of the “50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time.”

Given the amount of family-based shows that have been on television, this is a huge accomplishment for the fictional dad. The list and standing were from the magazine’s 2004 issue.

While Andy Griffith, who plays Andy Taylor, is in the top ten, he’s not at the very top of the list. So, who are some other dads viewers grew attached to on the screen?

Since 2004, TV Guide has updated their list to account for dads appearing in newer shows.

The No. 1 spot as of 2018 goes to Bob Duncan on “Good Luck Charlie.” This Disney Channel sitcom centered around the Duncan family. It focuses on the three older kids and a surprise fourth kid named Charlie. The show was from 2010-2014 and was a comedic look into a modern middle-class family.

As for the outlandish dad group, “The Simpsons” scored the No. 2 spot with the help of Homer Simpson. This classic comedy has been on since 1989. It follows the adventures and disasters of a comedic working-class family in Springfield.

The No. 3 spot went to powerful mob boss Tony Soprano on “The Sopranos.” He is quite the intimidating father given his mob boss status and constant stresses.

Other lists completely disagree with TV Guide’s order. Today released their own list for Father’s Day in 2020 titled, “Here are the 20 best TV dads from the last 30 years.” The dads from “This Is Us,” “Modern Family,” “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” and “Roseanne” are at the top of this more modern collection.

Family as a Timeless Theme

Family is a timeless theme in television. Whether it’s positive or negative, light and happy, or dark and depressing, it’s hard to escape it. While “The Andy Griffith Show” was first on in 1960, the themes of the show are still highly relatable to viewers now. In fact, Andy is now the No. 4 dad on the recent list. Despite new additions to the TV dad family, it’s hard to replace the significance of Andy Taylor.

“The Brady Bunch,” a competitor for the Griffiths, is right behind them at No. 5. Other notable shows are “Seinfeld,” “Everybody Loves Raymond,” “Veronica Mars,” and “Modern Family.”

What is it that allows Andy to still be influential compared to modern dads? Part of it is certainly nostalgia. Many people enjoying watching older shows like “The Brady Bunch,” “I Love Lucy,” and “Father Knows Best” for their more traditional family views.

Andy possesses a lot of compassion, humor, morality, humility, and respect. Each episode teaches a lesson at the end. Griffith also established a lot of wisdom and family values for his own family.

Overall, his characteristics and actions made him someone parents and children look up to. His character on “The Andy Griffith Show” can still compete with newer dads that rule the screen.