Downton Abbey: 10 Rules That Members Of The Crawley Family Have To Follow

With the motion picture set to premiere in September, fans of the TV show Downton Abbey definitely have something to look forward to. One of the highest ranking series of all time, the historical drama spanned six seasons over the course of five years. Downton Abbey amassed a considerable fan following.

RELATED: Downton Abbey: 10 Best Costumes On The Show, Ranked

The compelling lives of a noble family and the downstairs servants. set against the backdrop of the always enticing early 20th century, made for a fantastic piece of television drama. Downton Abbey became so popular that it paved the way for a movie to be made. Many factors contributed to the huge success of the show, with the most prominent one being the time period. Many of the things we saw come to life on the series are actually based on true events. And yes, that includes the Crawley family and the rules they have to follow. Some of them probably aren’t new, but others might just surprise you. Let’s take a look at 10 of those rules!

10 Women Can’t Be Heirs

The daughters of Robert and Cora Crawley are fan favorites, and no one can quite imagine the show without them. For everyone who watches the show, it came as a blessing that the Crawley family could only produce female offspring. Particularly women of such character and courage, because we all love some girl power represented on TV.

But let us not forget that Downton Abbey took place in the 20th century when women didn’t have the rights they have today. One of those was the right to inherit, due to something known as the entail. This law was written in stone to the point that everyone in the family panicked when the heir of Downton died aboard the Titanic.

9 No Closeness With The Servants

Look, let’s not forget that Downton is, after all, nothing more than fiction. A piece of compelling, endearing, and heart-breaking fiction, but fiction nonetheless. And some creative liberties will always be taken in the name of TV drama quality, especially when it comes to the relationship between masters and servants.

Historians might frown a bit at the closeness between the Crawley family and the downstairs people because it was deemed as incredibly inappropriate for masters to be close with their servants. But even though the show does take a few liberties in this aspect, the lines are never blurred, and there’s always a clear sense of hierarchy.

8 A Marriage Is A Contract

For those of us who have been born and raised in the later years of the 21st century, it’s almost impossible to imagine getting married for any other reason besides love. The way younger generations see it, marriage is nothing more than a celebration of love and of two people who want to build a life together.

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Things were a little different back then, though. Marriages weren’t arranged because two people were madly in love with each other, but rather because it was a good business opportunity. Mary and Mathew were lucky enough to fall in love eventually, but their union began as nothing more than a contract.

7 Speak Properly

If you were born into servitude, you were bound to die into servitude. The lives of the servants in Downton Abbey become even sadder once we realize that, back in the early 20th century, escaping poverty and rising above your station was nearly impossible to do. And while falling out of grace in the case of noble families was a little easier, it was also not as black and white as one might think.

Being born into nobility also came with its own set of responsibilities. Anyone who’s ever watched the show has marveled at the way the Crawley family speaks. This is no coincidence, given that the high ladies and gentlemen of the time were expected to speak properly and elegantly.

6 Careful With Mourning

Back when Queen Victoria’s husband died, the poor ruler was so heart-broken, she withdrew herself from her duties as Queen so she could mourn in peace. This period of mourning dragged on and was eventually perceived as extremely harmful to the nation. This perception resulted in the societal belief that long periods of mourning were not something one should abide by.

RELATED: Downton Abbey: 5 Best Couples (& 5 Pairings Fans Hated)

Lady Mary turned a blind eye to this, and when she lost her husband Mathew, she went into a considerably long period of mourning herself. However, members of the Crawley family were sure to be aware that such a practice had been abandoned by society. We’ll give Mary a discount since we’re still mourning ourselves.

5 No Children Outside of Wedlock

Some rules are made to be broken, and as we’ve seen so far, even though all of these are rules the Crawley family should abide by, there are always a few exceptions. Anyone who is familiar with the basics of history knows that back in the 20th century, having children out of wedlock was considered one of the worst possible things a woman could do.

For many years, women’s role in society boiled down to marrying and producing heirs for their husbands. If there was proof that a woman wasn’t a virgin, especially if that proof came in the form of a child, that would be enough to have her cast away from society. Edith may have found her happy ending, but she was lucky.

4 Help The Troops

In the middle of the second season of the show, audiences watched eagerly as Downton Abbey was turned into a recovery house for the soldiers who fought bravely during World War I. This is actually a nod to an accurate historical event that took place in Highclere Castle, the building used to portray Downton. At the time, the Countess of Carnarvon did exactly that, opening the doors of her house to the troops of her country.

RELATED: 5 Historically Accurate Details About Downton Abbey (And 5 That Were Pure Fiction)

Even though Cora Crawley wasn’t very happy about the situation, noble families knew that, in order to preserve their reputation in society, they had to prove loyalty to their country.

3 Dress Elegantly

It’s not just a coincidence that Downton Abbey has been nominated several times for awards for costume design and hairstyling. The show does a stellar job of bringing to life the way people in the early 20th century were dressed from the servants, to the soldiers, to the noble Crawley clan.

There’s not a single fan of the show who hasn’t been left in awe by the wonderful costumes worn by the Crawley men and women. They are true staples of wealth, opulence, and elegance, and that’s exactly how it should be. Nobles were expected to always look their best, even if they weren’t set to leave their estates.

2 Know Your Place

The issue of how women were expected to behave is a recurring theme in this list. This is mostly due to the fact that many more rules applied to women since the emancipation wouldn’t occur until decades later, which would finally allow them to inherit, marry for love, and have as many children as they liked inside or outside of wedlock.

In the early 20th century, noblewomen were expected to look beautiful, remain virgins until they wed, produce heirs, and take care of their household. Any woman who dared try to get political or take a very active part in her husband’s business affairs would be scolded—or worse.

1 Don’t Marry Below Your Station

This issue is valid both for men and women, although noblemen with a considerable fortune wouldn’t be as disgraced. As we’ve explained above, in the early 20th century, marriage was perceived as a contract. More often than not, people were pushed towards unions that were financially advantageous, without love even being a part of the conversation.

Anyone who dared not follow the norm would probably become cast out and no longer welcome in society. Hierarchy was a big part of life in the early 20th century, and trying to break with the status quo was simply not a good idea.

NEXT: 10 Other Shows For Fans Of Downton Abbey

2019-07-15 01:07:18

Mariana Fernandes

Family Matters: 10 Storylines That Were Never Resolved

The mid-’90s was something of a golden period for family-centered sitcoms, with programs like Full House, Home Improvement, and Step by Step focusing on the trials and tribulations of large, rowdy broods with hapless fathers, angsty teens, and wacky neighbors. Family Matters, which aired on ABC from 1989 until 1997 (and then on CBS from ’97-’98) was centered nicely into the niche left by The Cosby Show, and just to the right of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

It focused on policeman Carl Winslow, his wife Harriette (a character from Perfect Strangers), their three children, her mother, and the irrepressible Steve Urkel. “Urkel” and his many zany catchphrases and geeky oddness became the focus of the series as time went on, allowing for more bizarre storylines like cloning and possessed puppets. Over the course of nine seasons, many of the plot points introduced were never touched on again, to varying degrees of absurdity (like completely forgetting about the third Winslow child). Perhaps certain storylines might have been resolved in Season 10, but we never got it.

RELATED: 10 Pop Culture References Created On Seinfeld


In the first season of Family Matters, Carl and Harriette Winslow are shown to have three children; Eddie (the eldest), Laura (the middle child), and Judy (the youngest daughter). Halfway through the first season, Steve Urkel appears, and while he wasn’t supposed to be a main character, takes over much more screen time, relegating Judy to being a background character.

By season four, she’s seen walking upstairs, but we never hear her speak. By season five she’s gone altogether, with no explanation, at age 13. Harriette and Carl act as though she never existed and they only had two children, with Urkel taking her place in the household since he almost never seems to leave.


Amidst all the antics and hijinks that Urkel gets up to bothering the Winslows, it’s sometimes easy to forget why he’s over at their house so much in the first place. In later seasons it’s hinted at that he doesn’t have the best relationship with his family, who he indicates actively dislike him. His parents are never seen, and we’re introduced to his cousin Myrtle Urkel who doesn’t live in the state.

At one point during the series, Steve’s parents up and move to Russia, causing the Winslows to take pity on him and move him into their household. We can imagine that was beyond difficult for Carl and Laura, but what about Steve? His feelings and reactions to being abandoned are never really explored.


One of the most blatant running gags in Family Matters is that Steve Urkel isn’t considered “cool”. With his dorky clothes, annoyingly high pitched voice, and ability to make a bad situation ten times worse, it’s reasonable to see why Eddie, Carl, and Laura wouldn’t want him around. But there’s a few members of the Winslow Family that like Steve, and these members happen to be people unconcerned with Steve’s popularity status.

RELATED: 10 ’90s Cartoons That Need To Be Rebooted

In the episode “Higher Anxiety”, while consoling Eddie about his two-timing girlfriend, Steve actually gets invited to a cool kid’s party, and later in the series, he saves his high school’s basketball team from losing by busting out some insane Michael Jordan type moves. You’d think instances like that would remind people that Steve wasn’t just a dorky loser.


An interesting fact about Family Matters is that it was actually a spin-off of Perfect Strangers, and based around the character of Harriette Winslow, an elevator operator at The Chicago Chronicle. She operated the elevator for the third and fourth seasons of the show before becoming the matriarch on its spin-off Family Matters and being fired from her job at the Chronicle.

A graduate from the Chicago Police Academy, Harriette had extensive police experience, having only quit the force because she became pregnant with Eddie. Yet soon after she was fired from the position of elevator operator, she becomes the director of security for the Chronicle. The series never explains why, with all her qualification, she didn’t get that position to begin with, rather than a much less lucrative one.


Few may remember that ’90s television was the Avengers of sit-coms, with characters regularly engaging in crossover episodes. Sabrina the Teenage Witch had a crossover with Boy Meets World, and Family Matters had a crossover with both Step by Step and Full House. In the Full House case, Steve is bothering his cousin while attending a science fair in San Francisco.

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It’s not really explained how Steve is in San Francisco from Chicago, as no episode of Family Members aired that night to set it up. This cousin of his is also never mentioned again, but the only cousin that ever appears in Family Matters is the Southern belle Mrytle Urkel (also played by Jaleel White) who falls in love with Eddie.


Steve Urkel’s car is as quirky as he is, and the little Isetta is called everything from a “hunk of junk” by Eddie to a toy car that Laura would crush if Steve ever asked her to get in it. For all its mechanical faults, however, the show couldn’t seem to decide whether it was going to operate like a perilous bucket of bolts or actually drive like a smooth cruising dream machine.

For instance, in one episode he explains he paid four dollars for a sunroof he purchased used, but in another, it’s his uncle that paid him fifty dollars to take it away. In one episode it has a speedometer that only goes up to 30 mph, in another 60mph, while in another it simply has…a chalkboard. It also drove just fine in “Driving Carl Crazy” and “Hot Rods To Heck”.


Throughout Family Matters, Steve Urkel’s unrequited love for Laura Winslow provided some of its most comedic and heartfelt moments. Laura viewed Steve as a complete geek, and he viewed her as a goddess, who no matter what he did (even transforming himself into the epitome of “cool” to take her on a date) she would never feel the same way about him.

That is, until the last few seasons of the show, which resulted in them dating and eventually getting engaged. While this may have seemed odd to some viewers, it was a nightmare for Carl Winslow. He must have been the happiest that their storyline wasn’t taken to its eventual conclusion; marriage in Season 10. The show ended with nine seasons before this travesty could ever happen.


Season 10 of Family Matters was going to be full of a lot of surprises; some expected, some definitely not. While it was clear that with the engagement of Steve and Laura in Season 9 wedding bells weren’t far off, it would have been certainly a surprise to fans to find out Laura was also pregnant soon after her nuptials. But that was definitely the plan for Season 10’s grand finale.

RELATED: Best And Worst ’90s TV Couples

Perhaps it makes sense – the conclusion of one of America’s favorite sitcoms about the bonds of family ends with another little family being started. Just imagine a baby crying with the same annoying pitch of Steve Urkel’s laugh and be happy that this storyline never made it to airing.


Carl often talked about his brothers, which viewers knew as Frank, Calvin, and Daryl. He actually had four brothers, but the fourth brother mysteriously never received a name and never received a backstory. Only one brother actually appeared on the show (Frank), and only in one episode, leaving viewers to speculate as to the identities of the others.

It’s been said by producers that they weren’t that interested in exploring Carl’s family, preferring instead to keep the focus of Family Matters on his role as the breadwinner of the family, his wife (who took some umbrage with his position as lofty patriarch), and his children. Some speculate his other brother was named Walter.


In the infamous Halloween episode “Stevil”, Steve purchases a dummy to practice ventriloquism. Two tragedies occur in the episode; Steve annoys everyone with his dummy routine, and the dummy tries to kill the entire Winslow family. Based on the Chucky franchise, the dummy comes to life and brutally murders Steve’s neighbors, though it’s later revealed this is all a dream.

A second episode, “Stevil II” included Stevil and a Carl dummy, Carlsbad, coming to life and trying to steal the souls of Steve and Carl Winslow in their dreams. A third installment, in which Stevil would try one last time for Steve’s soul was planned for Season 10, with his wife Laurotten wanting to go after Laura’s soul but it never aired.

NEXT: Seinfeld: 10 Storylines That Were Never Resolved

2019-07-10 05:07:47

Kayleena Pierce-Bohen

20 Dark Family Guy Jokes They Actually Got Away With

Family Guy is not afraid to make jokes about any subject, but it is still hard to believe they got away with these 20 jokes. The edgy animated comedy has been a staple of Fox’s programing for the last 20 years and has found a major following over this time. Seth MacFarlane’s series introduced viewers to the Griffin family, and the decades of content has seen Family Guy tell some unbelievable stories centered around Peter, Lois, Meg, Chris, Stewie, and Brian, as well as their unique friends like Quagmire.

Even though Family Guy is not intended for all audiences with its TV-14 rating, its particular style and sense of humor has made it stand out amidst increasing competition. The series is not afraid to push the limits of what audiences will find funny, but has gone too far in the past with several deleted scenes. While those moments did not make it to air, there have been many instances where Family Guy had scenes or jokes that still did air despite their dark content.

Related: 25 Family Guy Quagmire Moments That Went Too Far

The latest Screen Rant video takes a look at 20 times that Family Guy went dark, but still got away with it. All of these moments are intended to be done in humorous ways, and that meant the series tackled subjects that most shows would never even think about covering. Some viewers may have found these moments to be funny, but we’re more shocked that they included them to begin with. Check out every example in the video at the top of this post.

Most of these instances involve Family Guy tackling political topics that are hotly debated to this day or just ones that could be viewed as insensitive. The series has made jokes out of JFK’s assassination, abortion, and school shootings, which are not topics that most would attempt to make light of. They didn’t even wait very long to put Bill Cosby in their crosshairs to make jokes about the sexual assault cases against him, and have repeatedly made fun of Michael J. Fox for having Parkinson’s disease.

While there are certainly going to be some who find these types of jokes distasteful, they are exactly the type of jokes that Family Guy has been making from the beginning. The show has never shied away from a topic they think could be used to get a big laugh, and it is this dark sense of humor that many have come to know and love from Family Guy, making it the hit that it is.

More: 15 Animated Show Episodes Pulled From TV

2019-04-18 08:04:52

Cooper Hood

5 Best Couples On Modern Family (& 5 Of The Worst)

Modern Family is known for its hilarious portrayal of modern relationships. We get to take a look into the lifestyle of a gigantic family filled with big personalities, from the charmingly extroverted Gloria to the goofy-but-loveable Phil.

RELATED: Myers-Briggs® Personality Types Of Modern Family Characters

Being a show that is all about relationships, it is no surprise that there has been a handful of romantic connections throughout all ten seasons of the series.  Some of the couples on the show are absolutely goal-worthy while others never really made any sense to us. What are some of the best romantic couples on the show? What are some of the worst? Let’s take a look at the list below and find out.


At first glance, viewers have rolled their eyes at Jay and Gloria as a married couple. Assumptions flooded the minds of not only Modern Family fans but from characters on the show as well. Those assumptions all involved the idea of Gloria as a gold digger and Jay using Gloria as his gorgeous trophy wife.

It makes sense. Gloria is absolutely gorgeous and much younger than Jay, while he is stinking rich. Claire even says she thinks Gloria is using Jay for his money at the beginning of their relationship, yet as the show went on we realized how in love Jay and Gloria truly are. The two prove that everything is not what it seems and you should never judge a relationship based on what you can only see from the outside.


Phil and Claire are another example of a couple on Modern Family who have more to them than meets the eye. At first, the two seem like your classic sitcom couple- A frigid wife who constantly rolls her eyes at her goofy husband. The husband always seems to be the same naive guy who just can’t seem to grow up regardless of his age.

As the show progresses and we get to know the two more, the further we are able to appreciate the unique bond between them. The two are a perfect example of the notion that opposites attract. Phil appreciates how Claire takes care of him and grounds him, while Claire cherishes Phil’s ability to bring fun and excitement into their life. Both balance each other out in the best way.


Let’s face it – In the real world, Cam and Mitchell would be labeled as a toxic couple. The two try their best daily to one-up each other and they are constantly arguing over the most trivial things. Yet luckily, this isn’t the real world. This is a sitcom. In sitcoms, comedy is derived out of conflict, and boy do they have a ton of it.

Cam and Mitchell’s storylines are usually the funniest on the entire show, and that’s saying something considering how hilarious MF is. They both share a love for competition and regardless of all their bickering, Cam and Mitchell can’t seem to live without each other. Cam and Mitchell along with their daughter Lily are naturally set up to deliver comedy gold, and they never fail to leave us entertained.


Haley and Andy win the award as the ultimate one true pairing on Modern Family, by a landslide. Their chemistry is inevitable from the moment they first meet and it sticks throughout their entire relationship and then some. At first, Haley seems to be in denial about her feelings for Andy. For superficial reasons, she originally sees their relationship as one that could only ever exist in his wildest dreams.

RELATED: The 10 Best Guest Stars On Modern Family

It isn’t until he is engaged to another woman that she realizes how madly in love with him she is. Devastated to find out that he is engaged to someone else, she assumes there is no hope until Andy tells confesses to Haley that there’s no one else he loves but her. Fans were crushed when the couple didn’t end up together, and rightfully so. They truly had something beautiful going on, which leads us to our next couple…


Haley and Dylan aren’t a terrible couple as a whole, but the fact that Haley chose Dylan over Andy is what makes them one of the worst couples on this list. Although they seem to love and accept each other, they’re both too naive and childish to go through the daily motions of life together. At least when it comes to Dan and Claire, one of them is put-together enough to balance out the other’s immaturity. With Dylan and Haley, two lovable idiots don’t make a right.

Many fans complained about how Haley’s choice to be with Dylan in the end completely ruined her character development and caused her to regress back to the character she was in season one.


Although Phil and Gloria were never a couple, they have always had a very strange and mildly creepy relationship. Phil has constantly been caught lusting after Gloria even in the presence of his wife, Claire. At one point, Phil lies to his old college rival named Glenn about Gloria being his wife just to impress him and make him feel jealous.

RELATED: What To Expect From Modern Family In 2019

Glenn says he always thought Phil would end up with Claire, who he always thought was insanely beautiful. Glenn mentions how he was extremely jealous of Phil back in college for being with Claire, and it isn’t until then that Phil realizes how much he’s lucked out with Claire. Took you long enough, huh Phil?


Alex and Sanjay dated for a short period of time on Modern Family. The two were originally rivals in their senior year of high school, both constantly trying to one-up each other over their school achievements. Yet as is frequently the case on sitcoms, the heat between the two wasn’t just the result of mutual loathing.

Sanjay eventually came to the conclusion that he was attracted to Alex, and he told her this to her excitement. The two ended up dating until he eventually broke up with her because of the long distance between them while in college. It was probably for the best considering their relationship would most likely be extremely competitive.


Haley’s relationship with Arvin was perhaps the most beneficial relationship Haley could ever expect to have. Arvin is well established and extremely intelligent. He is the kind of man who Haley could really learn from and vice versa. While Arvin can teach her wisdom, Haley can help Arvin learn to have some excitement in his life.

Perhaps if Haley and Arvin stayed together we would see a more put-together version of the oldest Dunphy child. Unfortunately, love turns us into fools resulting in Haley going for Dylan instead.


Poor Benny Boy. He still lives with his mother as a grown man and is forced to live every day of his life knowing that he has a Tasmanian devil tattooed to his butt. Yet for some reason, Alex can’t help but find herself drawn to his childish ways.

Although she may get a thrill out of being the intellectual superior in the relationship, we seriously (seriously) think she can do better. But hey, we all have our own tastes and as this show has proven, opposites really do attract.


Sherry plays Manny’s Canadian girlfriend on Modern Family. Their relationship has no spark to it, proving that the two aren’t exactly Romeo and Juliet. Although they are nothing like the Shakespeare pairing, the one thing you could say they have in common with R & J is that Manny’s parents cannot stand Sherry.

Gloria and Jay believe Sherry overstays her welcome and when she stays with them, she attempts to entertain the family with her god-awful improv performances. Nothing more cringe-worthy than watching her act out as a T-Rex playing volleyball…

Next: 20 Things That Make No Sense About Modern Family

2019-04-17 01:04:12

Simone Torn

The 10 Best Guest Stars On Modern Family

With Modern Family soon to be entering its twelfth and final season, it’s hard not to get nostalgic about everything the beloved, award-winning sitcom has accomplished in its over 250 episodes. We’ve watched the eccentric Pritchett-Dunphy-Delgado-Tucker family grow and mature over time, from the new addition of Fulgencio Joe Delgado-Pritchett to multiple high school graduations and college acceptances to the reveal that Haley was pregnant via her high school sweetheart Dylan.

RELATED: Modern Family Renewed For Season 11 At ABC, Will Be Final Season

Relationships have come and gone, characters have passed away, and guest stars – ranging from current A-listers to previously unknown talent – have contributed in large part to what has made the series so great. While the series has stumbled in recent years, with some characters and plots almost unbearable to watch anymore, the caliber of guest talent that Modern Family continue to pull in is nothing short of impressive.

Sometimes, the main family members can be a little too much. That’s where the endless list of guest stars come in to shake things up, and make the series all the better as a result.

10 Winston Duke (Dwight)

Before he was stealing scenes as M’Baku in Black Panther, or leading a family against doppelgangers in Us, Winston Duke appeared in a few episodes of Modern Family‘s eighth season as Dwight. The star football player on the team that Cameron coached, Dwight stayed with Mitchell and Cameron for a while after his home life became unstable and would have required him moving before the end of the football season.

In addition, Dwight also briefly dated younger Dunphy daughter, Alex. He was an adorable addition to the series, gelling well with both storylines he took part in. But after only a few episodes, Dwight disappeared without another word – and Winston Duke would go on to become the rising star in Hollywood that he is now.

9 Chris Geere (Professor Arvin Fennerman)

Chris Geere is perhaps best known for his role of Jimmy in the cult hit cable comedy You’re The Worst. But for seven episodes across seasons nine and ten, Geere recurred on Modern Family as Dr. Arvin Fennerman. An esteemed professor of astrophysics at Caltech, Arvin is adorably geeky and awkward, and amazingly humble despite his impressive achievements. Alex Dunphy also has a clear crush on her instructor, and Dr. Fennerman does wind up becoming romantically involved with one of the Dunphy sisters…

…but not Alex. He dates dim-witted Haley on and off throughout the tenth season, and seems really invested in their relationship, despite the intelligence deficit between the two of them. Eventually, Haley chooses to once again date her former high school love, Dylan, and after she and Arvin break up, he’s never seen again.

8 Stephanie Beatriz (Sonia Delgado)

Before she was winning hearts with her badass performance as Detective Rosa Diaz on Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Stephanie Beatriz briefly appeared on Modern Family as Gloria Delgado Pritchett’s younger sister, Sonia. Visiting from Colombia, Sonia was initially quiet, mousy, and withdrawn, totally the opposite of her vibrant older sister. But all of that changed when it was revealed that Sonia was the woman Jay Pritchett was initially interested in.

RELATED: Matt LeBlanc Explains Turning Down Modern Family Role

Learning that her sister got the life that should have been hers, Sonia turns vindictive and vengeful, attempting to kill her sister and seduce her brother in law. Every performance that Beatriz turns in is over the top and hilarious, showing off her impressive comic range along the way.

7 Jon Polito (Earl Chambers)

For most of the series, Jay Pritchett and daughter Claire Dunphy have helped a closet sales business, Pritchett Closets. Apparently, the closet industry is a pretty cutthroat one, as Pritchett Closets has always been at war with fellow sales company Closets, Closets, Closests, Closets. And for Jay, this rivalry was truly personal, as Closets, Closets, Closets, Closets was run by his traitorous former partner, Earl Chambers, played by the character actor legend Jon Polito.

Prior to Polito’s tragic passing in 2016, Earl was a force to be reckoned with in the series, though his appearances were few and far between. He and Jay often went head to head and toe to toe, with even Jay’s children getting sucked into the middle of their fights on more than one occasion. After Polito’s death, Earl Chambers was briefly recast with another actor, but it just wasn’t the same.

6 Kevin Hart (Andre)

Long before Kevin Hart was one of the world’s most famous comedians, and even longer before the Oscars controversy involving him, he had a brief guest-starring role in the third season of Modern Family as Andre, the Dunphy family’s neighbor and Phil’s new friend. Phil and Andre bonded over their likewise quirky senses of humor, with one particular scene finding them trying to make a song out of the phrase “brother from another mother” in order to describe the sudden closeness of their friendship.

Andre wasn’t around very much, only appearing in the episodes “Treehouse” and “Planes, Trains, and Cars,” but his friendship with Phil led to some truly hilarious adventures, such as when he managed to convince the impulsive Phil to buy a much fancier car than he needed.

5 Kevin Daniels (Longinus)

In the early seasons of the series, Cam and Mitch’s circle of close gay friends provided some of the show’s most hilarious and instantly iconic moments. One of the best of these beloved characters was Kevin Daniels’ Longinus, a larger than life character who would have been promoted to sitcom icon status based on his name alone. Longinus worked as a cologne salesman in the early season, resulting in various hilarious mall mishaps, including when he and Phil got into a spraying war, spraying each other with cologne directly in the face.

Longinus hasn’t been used much in the later seasons of the series, which is a real shame, considering his contributions of dry witty remarks and larger than life physical humor made the early seasons really special. He has appeared occasionally at events that Cam and Mitch have thrown, including their wedding, but nothing has compared to the early years.

4 Shelley Long (DeDe Pritchett)

With a sitcom icon like Married… with Children‘s Ed O’Neill assuming the role of family patriarch Jay Pritchett, Modern Family really needed to deliver someone of the same caliber when they chose the actress to play the Pritchett matriarch – and boy, did they deliver. Over the course of the series’ first ten seasons, sitcom legend Shelley Long, best known as Cheers‘ Diane, recurred as the bohemian, loudly opinionated DeDe Pritchett.

RELATED: Every TV Show Ending In 2019

Although she only appeared in eight episodes of Modern Family, Long’s DeDe was always guaranteed to inject some drama and hilarity into each and every episode she took part in. Whether physically fighting with Gloria, engaging in a screaming match with ex-husband Jay, or sarcastically commenting on the lives of her children, DeDe was unarguably one of the series’ secret weapons.

3 Fred Willard (Frank Dunphy)

The Pritchett children aren’t the only ones who have comedy icons for parents, however. Phil Dunphy’s lovably loony and optimistic father, Frank Dunphy, is played by comedy legend Fred Willard, known for his appearances in works such as This Is Spinal Tap and Everybody Loves Raymond. Phil is often thought of as a total nerd, with pie in the sky dreams – and as soon as you see his father, it’s not hard to see how the apple didn’t fall very far from the tree at all.

Most of Frank’s appearances in the series consist of him showing up unexpectedly, which forces the Dunphy clan to figure out how to deal with him and his frankness – both literal and metaphorical. Later in the series, he remarries, and it just so happens to be to a woman that was once Phil’s babysitter – and Phil’s first crush. Occasionally, Frank also Skypes in for family events, via a rolling tablet.

2 Reid Ewing (Dylan Marshall)

From the moment that Dylan Stardust Marshall appeared in the Modern Family pilot, it was clear that the series had found something truly special in his adorable portrayer, Reid Ewing. Over the years, Dylan has remained just as adorably dimwitted as ever, proving time and again that he’s the only man to have ever really understood Haley. While they were once ditzy high school sweethearts, who got into trouble more than they ever got out of it, Dylan and Haley have both grown up over time.

And now, in the series’ eleventh season, they’re married, with twin babies on the way. And all the while, Ewing’s performance has been one of the few constantly hilarious parts of the series. He never misses a comedic beat, whether in line delivery or in the sheer amount of physical humor the series requires his lanky self to endure. Dylan is one of Modern Family‘s best, and most unique, creations – but none of it would have been possible without Reid Ewing.

1 Nathan Lane (Pepper Saltzman)

It’s truly impossible to think of any other guest star topping this list. You almost don’t need to know anything about Pepper Saltzman. Once Nathan Lane is guest starring in a comedy series, it’s clear that no other guest actor could ever top his performance. It certainly doesn’t hurt that Pepper is far and away the most hilarious character in the entire series. Larger than life, despite his diminutive stature, Sherman “Pepper” Saltzman is one of Cameron and Mitchell’s oldest – and gayest – friends, a wedding planner with a flair for all aspects of life.

Given his line of work, he’s far more dramatic than any of the other characters in the series – even the overly wrought Cameron. But not once are his dramatics tiring, or eyeroll inducing. If anything, his histrionics are infectious, leading viewers to give into fits of hysterical laughter as he moves from one zany moment to the next. His relationships with his husband Ronaldo, as well as Jay and Phil, have especially been highlights of Lane’s tenure on the series.

NEXT: Myers-Briggs® Personality Types Of Modern Family Characters

2019-04-15 03:04:46

Katerina Daley

The Addams Family Trailer: An Altogether Ooky Animated Movie

The Addams get animated in the trailer for The Addams Family. Over the decades since Charles Addams introduced his single-panel Addams Family New Yorker comics in the 1930s, the cartoonist’s satirical vision of a creepy and kooky aristocratic American family has given rise to a famous 1960s live-action TV show, multiple cartoon series, and a handful of live-action movies in the ’90s. The Addams are now getting a computer-generated makeover on the big screen, courtesy of Shrek 2 and Sausage Party director Conrad Vernon.

Oscar Isaac and Charlize Theron lend their voices to the film as Addams Family patriarch Gomez and matriarch Morticia, respectively, with Chloë Grace Moretz, Nick Kroll, Bette Midler, and Stranger Things‘ Finn Wolfhard bringing the rest of the (altogether ooky) Addams clan to animated life here. After years of being stuck in development as a stop-motion feature with Tim Burton at the helm, the Vernon-helmed Addams Family started production in October 2017, and has been moving down the pipeline steadily ever since. Now, ahead of the film’s release this October, MGM is getting its marketing campaign fully up and running.

Related: Shaun the Sheep Movie 2 Trailer: Shaun Makes a New (Alien) Friend

The first Addams Family trailer is now online, ahead of its premiere in theaters with (presumably) the Laika-animated Missing Link this week. You can check it out in the space below.


Source: MGM

2019-04-09 06:04:15

Sandy Schaefer

Game Of Thrones: 20 Fan Theories About The Targaryen Family That Make Way Too Much Sense

Game of Thrones is a popular show that fans love to discuss. Many fans come up with theories about their favorite characters, including one of the families at the center of it all: the Targaryens. Some of these theories make sense, while others don’t. For now, let’s focus on the former rather than the latter.

Whether it’s theorizing that Daenerys is the hero destined to defeat the White Walkers, or that she herself will be transformed, fans love talking about the Targaryens. Like all of the characters on Game of Thrones, Daenerys and Jon— the two remaining Targaryens— are very interesting. They are three-dimensional and morally ambiguous, but that’s what fans love about them. The theories about them go from heartbreaking to uplifting— such as the theory that Jon is the weapon destined to defeat the White Walkers.

No matter the theory, one thing is clear: The Targaryens fascinate fans. For now, the Targaryens that remain are Daenerys Targaryen and Jon Snow, who is unaware of his Targaryen roots. Though either one of them could meet their demise quickly in the world of Game of Thrones, for now these characters remain. Daenerys Targaryen is somewhat ruthless at times but has a good heart. Jon Snow is noble to a fault, much like the Stark side of his family.  Both characters have been through a lot to get to where they are now. No wonder they’re so fascinating.

Without further ado, let us get into: 20 Fan Theories About The Targaryen Family That Make Way Too Much Sense. 

20 Daenerys Is Azor Ahai

In the books that Game of Thrones is based on, Azor Ahai is a rather legendary figure. A hero who is meant to return when things get bad. Sounds like Daenerys Targaryen to us! And a fan on Reddit agrees. 

In the books, Azor Ahai tries to forge a weapon. First he tries using water, it doesn’t work. Second, he tries putting the weapon through the heart of a lion, it doesn’t work. Then, he puts the sword through the heart of his love, Nissa Nissa. Now, what about this sounds like Daenerys? Good question! It’s not directly about her forging a weapon, but during season 7, she had several key losses. First, she lost a naval battle— in water— and then she lost after the battle at Casterly Rock— which could be said to be the heart of the lion. The jury is out on whether or not she’ll have to lose Jon Snow in order to defeat the White Walkers. Though she did lose one of her beloved dragons. So perhaps that could fit the prophecy.

19 Daenerys And Jon Will Have A Baby

Ok, we know, gross. Yet according to a fan on Tumblr, it’s possible. Remember way back in season one when Mirri Maz Duur told Daenerys that “only a demise could pay for life?” Well, Viserion— one of her dragons— passed away. And so perhaps that means the spell is lifted and Daenerys can now have children. It certainly would be a plot twist worthy of Game of Thrones. It would be unexpected and no one would necessarily want it to happen, making it perfect for the show. We have to say, this would be a rather unpleasant plot twist. Still, when has that stopped the Game of Thrones writers? Red Wedding, anyone? This would be absolutely perfect for the show that loves to shock its audience.

18 The Baby Will Be The Third Head Of The Dragon

In the books, “the dragon has three heads” is an often repeated saying. Though it has not been as prominent on the show, the sigil of house Targaryen is a three-headed dragon. And Daenerys had three dragons before the loss of Viserion. So the dragon could still have three heads that are Targaryens. According to the aforementioned fan on Tumblr, the third head of the dragon will be Daenerys and Jon’s baby. How the Night King will feel about that, we don’t know. He probably won’t like it very much. He’d hate to lose his dragon. But if there is a baby Targaryen, well… he or she would be a better third head of the dragon than the Night King, for sure.

17 Daenerys Will Be Left With Jon’s Baby After His Demise

According to a fan on Reddit, this will be the bittersweet ending that we were promised. The bitter part is, of course, the fact that Jon will sacrifice himself. Yet the sweet part will be that Daenerys will have his child and that child will grow up to be the next ruler of Westeros. This ending would be perfect for Game of Thrones. It would be just the right amount of strange and unusual with a hint of sweetness. Though this may not be the ending that anyone would choose, that is, in a way, what makes it perfect for the show. Game of Thrones loves to surprise and shock its audience, after all. What better way to do that than to get rid of one of the most heroic characters yet have his legacy live on through his love and his child?

16 Daenerys Will Be Transformed Into A White Walker

Say it isn’t so. Well, according to a fan on Reddit, it’s definitely a possibility. This fan draws on various aspects of the books and the show for this theory, including Azor Ahai and Nissa Nissa, the White Walkers as sentient, an analysis of the House of the Undying prophecies that Daenerys received, and more. This fan states that Jon and Daenerys will get married as is shown in the House of the Undying. Afterwards, Jon will do as Azor Ahai once did and put his dragonsteel blade into his wife, Daenerys. However, it will not lead to her demise. Nor did it all those centuries ago for Nissa Nissa. Instead, Daenerys will be transformed into a White Walker as Nissa Nissa once was. Then she and Jon will rule Westeros as man and White Walker, giving us a bittersweet ending.

15 Daenerys’ Dragon’s Names Predicted Their Fate

According to this fan, Daenerys’ dragon’s names have meaning. Not only were they named for important men in Daenerys’ life, but their names will have a meaning aligned with their fates. For example, Viserion was eliminated by the Night King, just as Viserys met his demise at the hands of Khal Drogo. According to this fan, that means that the new and improved— or worsened, depending on your point of view— Viserion will meet his demise via Drogon. As Khal Drogo once got rid of Viserys, so too will Drogon get rid of Viserion. The fan also believes that Jon Snow will ride Rhaegal as the dragon was named for his father, Rhaegar. This will show the union of  the houses Stark and Targaryen, that Rhaegar was hoping for.

14 Varys Will Eliminate Daenerys

Daenerys should watch out, according to this fan.  Varys will apparently eliminate her just when she’s poised to get everything she wants. He will do so, apparently, for the good of Westeros. The reason for this is that he will find out about Jon Snow’s true parentage and will believe that he will make a better ruler than Daenerys since he lacks the Targaryen’s temper. He is far more like the Stark side of his family. Don’t worry, though, Daenerys fans. She will not have lived in vain. This fan theory goes on to state that Grey Worm and Missandei, after Jon Snow has reluctantly assumed the throne, will lead her army back to Meereen to ensure that the city remains free of slavery. She will be known throughout Essos as the “Breaker of Chains,” a legacy that will endure forever.

13 Tyrion Will Betray Daenerys

We have discussed this theory before. It’s quite a popular one in the fanbase. Many fan theorists believe in it.  How this theory will play out is something that we’ll have to wait until season 8 to see. One way that it might go is that Tyrion will save Jaime and betray Daenerys by doing so. This is definitely a possibility since Tyrion loves his brother and will want to help him if he can. Another way that this theory could go is that Tyrion will find out the secret of Jon’s parentage before Daenerys and will keep it from her. That could definitely happen as well, since Tyrion would likely not want to threaten the alliance between Daenerys and the Starks.

12 Daenerys Is The Stallion Who Mounts The World

Remember back in season one when Daenerys went to Vaes Dothrak? And she heard a prophecy about the Stallion Who Mounts The World? Well what if that prophecy was not about her and Khal Drogo’s baby, but was actually about Daenerys herself? Let’s look at the prophecy itself. “As swift as the wind he rides…” Sounds like someone riding a dragon to us! “Behind him his khalasar covers the earth.” Daenerys certainly has quite a big khalasar. “Fierce as a storm this prince will be.” Daenerys isn’t known as Daenerys Stormborn for no reason. Besides the fact that she was born during an actual storm, she is quite fierce. Though this prophecy does seem to be about Daenerys’ son, let’s look at the facts. First of all, prophecies are often not specific, especially in the A Song of Ice and Fire series. Secondly, Daenerys can ride “as swift as the wind” on her dragons and she has, in the show at least, united all of the khalasars into a single khalasar that can “cover the earth.” So this prophecy could definitely be about her.

11 Mirri Maz Duur Told Daenerys’ Future… And About The Battle Against The White Walkers

The same fan theorist from the last section believes that Mirri Maz Duur’s prophecy for Daenerys was an end of the world prophecy. That she was talking about the war to come with the White Walkers. Let’s look at what Mirri Maz Duur tells Daenerys. When asked when Khal Drogo will be as he was, Mirri Maz Duur says “when the sun rises in the west and sets in the east, when the seas go dry and the mountains blow in the wind like leaves.” Sounds very apocalyptic, right? And some of it has already happened. The sun— not the actual sun, but the champion of the Lord of Light— of Daenerys has risen in the west, Westeros, after leaving the east, Essos. The seas going dry could refer to the seas freezing because of the White Walkers. And mountains blowing in the wind like leaves could refer to huge mountain-like snow drifts blowing in the wind.

10 Daenerys And Jon Will Want To Get Married

This goes along with the baby theories a little bit. According to this fan theorist, Daenerys will get pregnant and Jon will want to marry her so that their child will not have the stigma of being illegitimate that Jon himself grew up with. But according to the fan, things will not go well for the two Targaryens. Tyrion Lannister will mess things up for them by telling Jon and Daenerys that the North won’t accept Jon being a Targaryen and/or marrying one. Sansa will also be against the match. Looks like a Game of Thrones plot line to us! It has just the right amount of intrigue and a bit of grossness as well.

9 …But She’ll End Up Marrying Jorah Mormont Instead

Yes, that’s right. According to the fan theorist from the last section, Daenerys will end up marrying Ser Jorah Mormont after being convinced not to marry Jon Snow. Well, at least the two of them aren’t related. Still, there is a significant age difference between them even with Daenerys’ character being aged up for the show. The fan theorist goes on to state that Daenerys will also be told to pretend that Jorah is her baby’s father. Seems possible to us.  This would definitely be a plot twist fans wouldn’t see coming and wouldn’t necessarily want, making it perfect for Game of Thrones. Poor Daenerys, though. And poor Jorah, who would be marrying the woman he loves but only because she was convinced not to marry the person she loves. What a mess.

8 Jon Is Lightbringer

Wait, you may be thinking. Isn’t Lightbringer supposed to be a flaming sword or something? Well, as is mentioned before, prophecies aren’t always what they seem. Just like Daenerys is the Stallion Who Mounts The World, Jon is also able to be Lightbringer. According to a fan theorist, the proof is already there. Jon was conceived by Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark. Lyanna passed away in childbirth and that is part of the proof that Jon is Lightbringer. Just as Nissa Nissa was once eliminated by Azor Ahai’s sword, Lyanna Stark met her demise by giving birth to the child of the love of her life. Also, Jon is bringing light, literally, by getting Daenerys and her dragons to fight the White Walkers.

7 …Which Makes Rhaegar Targaryen Azor Ahai

It would be just like Game of Thrones to pull a twist like this on us. According to the same fan theorist from the last post, Jon being Lightbringer makes Rhaegar Azor Ahai/The Prince That Was Promised. Rhaegar was born at Summerhall on the day it was burned down, which means he was born amidst salt and smoke, which is required for the prophecy. Rhaegar also was born on the day when they lost a  king, a prince, and a member of the Kingsguard, causing tears which are salty. The fan theorist also mentions that when he grew older, Rhaegar would write songs that would make all of the women cry. Rhaegar also had a hand in creating Lightbringer— by which we mean Jon— which is another part of the Azor Ahai prophecy.

6 Melisandre Will Bring Back Viserion

According to one Reddit user’s mother, she must still be around for some reason. And she may just play a role in the war to come. Viserion, one of Daenerys’ dragons, is now reanimated and under the control of the Night King. But what if he wasn’t? What if Daenerys and Melisandre together were able to bring him back to the way he was? That would be amazing. And definitely a plot twist worthy of Game of Thrones. Melisandre has definitely shown that she can bring people back with Jon Snow. So why not dragons? This theory is definitely very possible in our opinion and could change everything for those fighting the White Walkers. We’ll have to wait for season eight to know for sure, of course.

5 Daenerys Will Pass Away In Childbirth

This would be a tragic ending for her character. Then again, that is common on Game of Thrones. According to one fan theorist, it is because her child with Jon will be a dragon rider. Therefore, like her mother and Lyanna Stark before her, she will pass away during childbirth. This theory is definitely possible, because of how heartbreaking it is. To see Daenerys, the Mother of Dragons, Breaker of Chains, etc. pass away during childbirth would just be sad. Yet Game of Thrones loves making its audience sad. It would be very sad for many fans, though, as Daenerys is a very loved character. Like all the rest of the characters on Game of Thrones, she has her fans and she has those who are not so fond of her. Yet many fans would agree that she’s an interesting character and it would be upsetting to lose her.

4 Daenerys Will Break The Night King’s Hold On Viserion 

According to a fan on Tumblr, Melisandre will not even be needed to bring Viserion back to his old self. All that will happen is that Daenerys will say “a dragon is not a slave” in Valyrian, which will bring Viserion back to himself. He will therefore throw off the Night King and turn the tide of the battle. Seem a bit fantastical? Well this is a world full of dragons and ice zombies. So you never know what could happen. It would definitely be a good plot twist and would be helpful for those fighting the White Walkers. Not only that, but it would tie into Daenerys’ title of Breaker of Chains. Viserion is essentially being enslaved by the Night King. If Daenerys was able to free him from that slavery, as she once freed those in Astapor, Yunkai, and Meereen, that would definitely fit with her role as a liberator.

3 Daenerys’ Treasons Will Help Her

In the House of the Undying, Daenerys is given several prophecies. One of them says that she will be betrayed three times. Once for blood, once for gold, and once for love. According to a fan on Tumblr, these betrayals will actually help her reach her destiny. This seems like just the kind of plot twist Game of Thrones could pull off. While Daenerys is looking for people to betray her, she would not be expecting these betrayals to be a blessing in disguise. Therefore this theory could definitely play out on the show and perhaps even in the books as well. George R. R. Martin loves to mess with our heads and the heads of his characters. Prophecies in the world of Game of Thrones are never as simple as they seem.

2 Daenerys Will Destroy The Lannisters

According to the same fan theorist, Daenerys will cause the downfall of the Lannisters. The foreshadowing for this is in the book. A popular puppet show among the common people of Westeros is one where a dragon hatches from an egg and devours all the lions. According to the fan theorist, this foreshadows Daenerys— the dragon— being the downfall of the Lannisters— the lions. This could definitely happen in the show as well as in the books. Though if that is the case, Tyrion should be careful. Though perhaps he would be spared from this since he’s her Hand. You never know, though, with Game of Thrones. If he does betray her in season eight, he could definitely be in trouble. In any case, this fan theory is an interesting one and we would like to see if it plays out on the show.

1 Westeros Will Need Daenerys To Rule After The War With The White Walkers

According to one fan theorist, this has been foreshadowed in the books when Daenerys is compared by others and by herself to her ancestor Aegon the Conqueror. Aegon was able to bring peace and prosperity to Westeros after his conquering it and according to this fan theorist, Daenerys will do the same. She will be queen in her own right and will help Westeros recover from the battle with the White Walkers. She will help Westeros and Essos trade more after the war is over. This is because she is multilingual and has connections in Essos. Westeros will need these because their natural resources will be depleted after the war with the White Walkers. This is a great theory and is exactly the kind of plot twist that Game of Thrones could pull off very well.

Do you know any other fan theories about the Targaryens from Game of Thrones? Let us know in the comments!

2019-04-05 04:04:47

Ann Darcy

Who Are The Shazam Family? DC’s New Movie Team Explained

Warning: This article contains SPOILERS for Shazam!

Here’s everything you need to know about the Shazam! movie’s family of children-turned-superheroes, known as the Shazam Family – formerly known as DC’s ‘Captain Marvel Family’ before the publisher was forced to change it (for obvious reasons). And most importantly, what their arrival into the DCEU could mean for future movies.

As the star of the show, it’s Billy Batson and his Shazam! alter ego that are taking up most of the spotlight. Movie audiences have also gotten more than a few looks at Freddy Freeman, Shazam’s closest friend in the movie’s trailers and TV spots. But before you start thinking that Billy’s foster brothers and sisters qualify as “sidekicks,” let’s set the record straight: they’ve been with Billy and the Wizard Shazam ever since the first days of the famous Captain Marvel.

Related: Shazam’s Origin Story, Powers & Movie Changes Explained

With Shazam! now in theaters, it’s clear that the creative team behind the latest DC movie took their time in making sure Billy’s foster siblings – Freddy, Mary, Darla, Eugene, and Pedro – stayed true to the source material, and that includes transforming them into their superhero counterparts, collectively known as the Shazam Family.

  • This Page: Billy Batson’s Shazam! Family Explained
  • Page 2: The Shazam Family of DC Superheroes

Last updated: April 4, 2019

Billy Batson’s Foster Family & Adult Superhero Actors

Once it became clear just how closely the movie was based on DC’s modern Shazam! comic series, it went without saying that the foster brothers and sisters would be adapted. In Geoff Johns and Gary Frank’s re-imagining of Billy’s story, the elements of family were at the heart of the new Shazam mythology. And to drive that home, Billy was re-imagined as one of an entire household of foster children in Philadelphia. A family he shrugs off at first, but soon learns to embrace as he understands the power that they possess in connection to his own… more on that later.

Fans should familiarize themselves with the kids already being fostered by Rosa and Victor Vasquez (played by Marta Milans and Cooper Andrews, respectively). Fans will already be familiar with Freddy Freeman (Jack Dylan Grazer), superhero superfan who uses humor to protect himself, instead of Billy’s aloofness. Then there’s Mary Bromfield (Grace Fulton) who takes her position as the oldest of the kids to heart, caring for the youngest of the family. That would refer to Eugene Choi (Ian Chen) and Darla Dudley (Faithe Herman), with the quiet Pedro Peña (Jovan Armand) rounding out the team.

At the end of the Shazam! movie, Billy uses the Wizard’s staff to imbue his foster siblings with unique powers he possesses. In doing so, each of the siblings transform into adult superheroes, thereby becoming the Shazam Family. In the movie, the Shazam Family is comprised of actors and actresses Michelle Borth (Mary), Meagan Good (Darla), Ross Butler (Eugene), Adam Brody (Freddy), and D.J. Cotrona (Pedro).

Freddy & Mary Are The Key Players in Shazam! 

We’re not showing any bias when it comes to the children welcoming Billy Batson into his new foster family, simply stating the facts: it’s Mary and Freddy who share the most screen time with Billy (and Shazam) in at least the hero’s origin film. Freddy is welcomed into Shazam’s confidence due to his wisdom when it comes to superheroics. But Mary’s role is different for one major reason.

Where Freddy helps Shazam play the part of a superhero, it’s Mary more than anyone else who pushes Billy Batson to become a hero at heart. The trio of Billy, Freddy, and Mary has been a fundamental part of the Shazam story from the beginning, so in order to appreciate how the film pays homage to the comic book history – and start theorizing all the ways future Shazam sequels can make use of their past adventures – let’s dive a bit deeper into the mythology and lore behind the old (and new) versions of The Shazam Family.

Page 2 of 2: The Shazam Family of DC Superheroes

The Original Shazam Family of DC Comics

Trying to search for the comic book origin story and history of the Captain Marvel Family is going to be tricky for a few different reasons. For starters, DC is no longer allowed to market either Billy Batson as ‘Captain Marvel,’ or the larger group of backup characters as ‘The Marvel Family’ due to Marvel Comics introducing and popularizing their own version.

Ironically, it was DC (then National Comics) who first killed Captain Marvel by suing Fawcett Comics, alleging that their lightning-bolt-ed superhero was a Superman knockoff. DC won the case, and would acquire the rights to Captain Marvel decades later. As we said before, there was a whole lot more than just Billy Batson who helped launch the ‘Captain Marvel’ name into households. Within just two years of Captain Marvel’s debut, DC Comics had created two separate characters with their own origins and identities tied to Billy Batson.

First was Freddy Freeman, a disabled boy whose life was saved by Captain Marvel. After learning that Freddy would succumb to his injuries, Billy learned that he could share his magical powers with Freddy, if he chose. And so Freddy Freeman uttered his first “Captain Marvel!” and transformed into his healthy, but still teenage form – with a blue suit all his own – as the hero Captain Marvel, Jr.. And almost two decades before Superman would meet his cousin Supergirl, Billy Batson discovered he had a twin sister who he never even knew existed. And once that sister realized her twin could call down magic lightning, she did the same herself – and Mary Marvel was born.

They were the first to turn the Shazam! magic into a family, even if their origin stories were slightly altered over the next half-century. But when the New 52 was launched with the intention of rebooting and re-imagining almost all of DC’s classic heroes, writer Geoff Johns decided to put a new spin on the idea of the orphaned Billy Batson, and the friends who would become his family, and fellow superheroes…

The Shazam Family is Billy’s ‘Secret Spell’

The Shazam! movie clearly adapted a big part of Billy’s New 52 story. While the movie didn’t throw Shazam up against his famous villain Black Adam, instead putting Dr. Sivana into the role, the odds were still stacked against him. After all, Billy is just a kid, going toe to toe with an adult. Which is exactly why he loses… at first.

In the comics, Billy only learns his lesson when a magical being offers him advice, reminding him that “family is what it can be, not what it should be.” At first taken as sappy sentiment, it’s only when Billy is down and out that he realizes the truth of the magic, as the Wizard’s secret spell. Embracing the rest of his foster family (something his villain would never understand) the new, re-imagined version of The Shazam Family is born, transforming all of the children into older, stronger, and uniquely gifted champions just like Billy.

Related: Who Is Dr. Sivana? Shazam’s Villain Explained

Together, they manage to save the day, before returning all of the magic to Billy so he can take on the villain once and for all. And despite the film’s best efforts, leaks and rumors hinted that the adult version of the Shazam Family would join the DCEU. In the end, it really did happen – and it was terrific.

Geoff Johns’ long awaited follow up to that first Shazam run may provide some of the answers, if only in explaining how the kids moved forward from their brief experience as superheroes. With artist Dale Eaglesham, Geoff Johns has begun his new Shazam! comic series by confirming that it’s no longer Billy who plays the hero. Whether it was explicitly agreed upon, or never needed be said aloud, all of the foster family children can now transform by calling upon “Shazam” as a group. But before fans can expect to see Shazam! turn from an origin story to a team-based movie franchise, the studio will need to see how the first movie performs at the box office.

More: Everything We Know About Shazam 2

2019-04-04 01:04:33

Andrew Dyce

9 Best Family Guy Guest Stars, Ranked

While it got off to a slow start and was initially dismissed as a rip-off of The Simpsons, Family Guy grew into one of the most popular comedies on television when it found a new audience in reruns on Adult Swim and was saved from cancellation by Fox. Along with that success came the chance to book some pretty high-profile guest stars. Family Guy has had dozens of guest stars because its producers have the clout to get the real celebrities to voice themselves, even if it’s just in a brief 30-second cutaway gag. So, there’s plenty to choose from. Here are the 9 Best Family Guy Guest Stars, Ranked.

RELATED: The 5 Best (And 5 Worst) Episodes Of Family Guy

9 Neil Patrick Harris

Family Guy rags on How I Met Your Mother a lot, so it shows what a good sport Neil Patrick Harris is that he would guest-star on the show as his HIMYM character Barney Stinson. In this cutaway gag, Barney and Ted reveal their true feelings for each other, before Barney takes out a condom and tells Ted to “suit up.” Harris, along with Josh Radnor and Jason Segel, would later play their HIMYM characters as King Stewie’s jesters in the medieval-set episode “Peter’s Progress.” Stewie is unhappy with their idea of jokes and has them all killed by his archers.

8 Carol Channing

The episode “Patriot Games” is the infamous one in which Stewie repeatedly beats up Brian, asking him, “Where’s my money? Are you gonna give me my money? Where’s my money, man?” The only reason why Brian owed Stewie money in the first place is because he made a $50 bet on Mike Tyson in a celebrity boxing match in which he was fighting actress Carol Channing, who played herself in the episode. Tyson punches her a bunch of times and roughs her up, but she doesn’t go down. The spectators are astounding by it: “She’s gettin’ beat!” “Nah, she’s gettin’ mad!” In the end, she wins the fight.

7 Robert Downey Jr.

While he was still on his way to the mother of all comebacks, Robert Downey Jr. guest-starred in an episode of Family Guy as Lois’ long-lost brother Patrick. This was back in 2005, three years before Downey would take on the role of Tony Stark and become the biggest star in the world.

RELATED: 11 Shows To Watch If You Like Family Guy

The actor apparently called the producers and asked to be included in an episode, because his son was a big fan of the show. So, they wrote the role of Patrick in “The Fat Guy Strangler” for him and, according to Seth MacFarlane, he brought “[a] very kind of half crazy, and maybe just eccentric personality to that character that really worked out great.”

6 Drew Barrymore

Drew Barrymore made a few appearances as Brian’s dim-witted girlfriend Jillian Russell throughout the fifth season of Family Guy and she always played her stupidity with an optimism and gleefulness in her voice. On a DVD commentary, the fact that the producers got Barrymore to not only appear in the show, but play a recurring character, was described as “a big thing for Family Guy.” It was a shame when Brian broke up with Jillian and she was written out of the show, and a great relief when she came back, as she’s one of the funniest supporting characters in all of Family Guy.

5 Bryan Cranston

Long before he became one of the most celebrated actors in the world with the role of Walter White in Breaking Bad, Bryan Cranston was best known for playing Hal in the family sitcom Malcolm in the Middle. Cranston reprised the role in Family Guy. Hal and his kids are getting aggressively nagged by the mom, Lois, and when Hal has eventually had enough, he rips off the refrigerator door and uses it to kill her. Then he rejoices with the kids that they’re finally free and walks out into the street. The best pop culture references in Family Guy take something lighthearted like Malcolm in the Middle and make them dark.

4 Barry Manilow

When Peter and the guys first hear that Barry Manilow will be performing at the Quahog Performing Arts Center, they scoff at the idea. They all claim to hate his music and think his fans are idiots. But then they name a couple of his songs that “you can’t hate.” And then it comes out that they all absolutely love him.

RELATED: 25 Family Guy Quagmire Moments That Went Too Far

“Oh my God, he’s the best! I have everything he’s ever recorded!” “Me too! In my car!” “We have to go to that concert.” At the concert, Quagmire is invited up on stage where Manilow replaces the name “Mandy” with “Quagmire.”

3 Robert Loggia

Sometimes the best guest appearances on Family Guy are the ones that immortalize a relatively obscure celebrity. A prime example of this is when Peter finds himself behind Robert Loggia in the airport lobby. The clerk asks Loggia – the character actor from Big and Scarface who is famous for his distinctive voice – to spell his name. So, he says, “R as in Robert Loggia. O as in, ‘Oh my God, it’s Robert Loggia!’ B as in, ‘By God, that’s Robert Loggia!’ E as in everyone loves Robert Loggia. R as in Robert Loggia. T as in, ‘Tim, look over there – it’s Robert Loggia!’”

2 Betty White

In the episode “Peterotica,” Peter finds that he has a knack for writing erotic fiction and self-publishes a few erotic book parodies: Angela’s Asses, Catcher in the Eye, Shaved New World, Harry Potter and the Half Black Chick etc. The audio books are recorded by Betty White, with The Golden Girls star providing her own voice for the episode. The sound of White’s voice reading the graphic sexual content of Peter’s literature is hilarious. She has the quintessential sweet old lady voice – she sounds like a grandma – which is what makes her the funniest candidate to read sex scenes on tape.

1 James Woods

James Woods had previously played himself in The Simpsons, but he didn’t ruthlessly poke fun of everything he’s infamous for – his relative obscurity, his predatory sex drive, how difficult he is to work with etc. – until his recurring appearances on Family Guy. He stole Peter’s identity in “Back to the Woods,” he hosted the dinner party where all the murders happened in “And Then There Were Fewer,” he ruined Brian’s TV pilot in “Brian Griffin’s House of Payne,” he crushed Tom Tucker’s dreams in “Tom Tucker: The Man and His Dream,” and he can always be defeated by being led along a trail of candy into a trap.

NEXT: The 12 Best Simpsons Guest Stars, Ranked

2019-03-24 03:03:32

Ben Sherlock

Thor’s Chris Hemsworth Welcomes Deadpool To The Disney & Marvel Family

Chris Hemsworth welcomes Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool to the Marvel family after the completion of the Disney-Fox deal. Although there are many facets to Disney’s now official acquisition of Fox’s film and TV assets, the one that has undoubtedly received the most attention (for better or worse) is the reality that Marvel Studios will have access to the X-Men and Fantastic Four for the first time. Marvel has yet to confirm their plans for the characters, but a major reboot is expected.

While this will mean that new versions of Wolverine, Professor X, and more will eventually join the MCU, the fate of Deadpool may not be the same. Recent reports have indicated that Reynolds will continue to play Deadpool in the future, although whether or not it is in the Marvel Cinematic Universe remains to be seen. For his part, Reynolds has already made some Deadpool-style jokes about the deal and they should continue whenever he appears next.

Related: What The Fox/Disney Deal Means For Marvel’s Future

Now that Deadpool is officially a Disney character, Thor himself is taking time to welcome his fellow superhero to the family. Thor star Chris Hemsworth, who may make his final appearance in the MCU later this year in Avengers: Endgame, took to Instagram to share a fun image of what he says is Deadpool and Thor’s “love child.”

Even though this is just a piece of art shared by Hemsworth, it does go to show how effortlessly Deadpool can slide into the MCU. He may not wear Thor’s helmet or wield a miniature Mjolnir if it does happen, but the Avengers patch on his shoulder doesn’t look too out of place. Deadpool may not actually be accepted as an official member of Earth’s mightiest heroes, but it would not be surprising if Reynolds drew some inspiration from this art and had Deadpool incorporate recognizable MCU gear into his look next time around, even if it was just for a moment.

With Hemsworth helping welcome Reynolds to the Disney family, fans will surely be holding out hope that Thor and Deadpool can possibly cross paths in the future. We don’t yet know exactly what either of their futures are at this point, as Hemsworth could leave Thor behind after Endgame and Disney’s exact plans for Deadpool are still a mystery. This could result in the two characters never getting a chance to meet on screen, so maybe Reynolds’ Deadpool will get a mini Mjolnir of his own to honor him. Since Marvel Studios has only had access to Deadpool and the rest of Fox’s Marvel characters for a few days, it will still take some time before we know for sure what Deadpool’s future is with Disney, but we can only hope it includes a Thor meet up now.

MORE: Deadpool Has A Proper Future At Disney Now

Source: Chris Hemsworth

2019-03-22 12:03:55

Cooper Hood