The Sofa and The Family

What do much-loved sitcoms like Friends, The Simpsons and The Royle family have in common?

Whether it’s to seat the laziest, rudest family on British television, placed in front of a water fountain for a particular group of ‘friends’ to sit on, or be the centre point for a particular yellow family’s million opening ‘couch gags’, you’ve got to admit there’s a notable connection between the sofa and the notion of ‘family’.

Is there an episode of Friends that doesn’t involve every cast member sitting around in that famous coffee shop on that particular set of sofas where we’ve seen an array of emotional plot points unfold? Who could forget episodes of the Royle Family where Jim hasn’t been glued to that seat shouting, ‘Put the kettle on Barb!’ and half of the UK laughing at the irony in that most families would be sat around on our own sofas watching this programme and doing the exact same thing.

Many of us rarely think about the significance of the sofa in our own homes.Thinking about it now, it’s obvious there’s a reason that TV sitcoms use the sofa as a focus point for the representation of family, it’s like a mirror reflection!

Two years in college along with a group of friends taping up the ‘quiet room’ sofa with masking tape, we’ve all been there? With the stuffing ripped out of it, there must’ve been a mouse living in there. Either way it was loved, and why? Because every day for hours at a time, you could simply sit and talk about everything that was going on in our lives. It’s sitting around on that sofa (skipping classes) that is responsible for bonding of those ‘friends for life’.

Whilst at home, sitting in front of the television (either watching it or on our laptops pretending to watch), it’s a substantial part of the day for quality family unity time. It’s also the focus point of many Christmas rows including, ‘How shall we rearrange the room to fit the tree in?’ So whether it’s a 30 year old, ready to throw out sofa, a brand new recliner sofa by CSL found in a seasonal sale or a sofa taped together in that ‘DIY’ way, there’s no arguing that in a TV programme or in your own life, the sofa represents family for one good reason; Everyone is together!

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