A few years ago, Alan Thicke, one of America’s favorite TV dads, passed away suddenly at the age of 69. If you were a fan of the popular 80’s sitcom, “Growing Pains,” you know Alan Thicke’s character, Jason Seaver, well.
As the New York Times described him, Jason Seaver was a “reassuring father.” He was often named one of America’s 50 greatest TV dads of all time. On the show, he regularly swooped in and solved his kids’ problems. He was there for them and listened to them. He was active in their lives, not aloof. He was present, not passive. He had a strong marriage. He was respectable and respected. He cared about his family.
Fathers today are terribly maligned by the culture, and this is a problem.
We don’t see many Jason Seaver characters portrayed on TV today, do we? Instead, fathers on television and in movies are often portrayed as stupid, beer-drinking, remote control-hogging dunces who need to be taught life lessons by snarky 12-year-olds. Fathers today are terribly maligned by the culture, and this is a problem.
I believe the fact that so many are mourning Alan Thicke and remembering his iconic character this week says something about our culture: We miss our dads and we desperately want, and need, them back.
The public mourning of Alan Thicke says something about our culture: We want our dads back.