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    (January 21, 2007)


Victoria's essay explains the popularity of this national TV show.  

Everybody Loves Raymond
by Victoria

The most popular comedy show on national TV is “Everybody Loves Raymond”, by Ray Romano. What makes it so special? There are three main reasons: three main kinds of jokes, to be clear, that’s what people usually like to hear. “Raymond” has them all. The jokes are about relationships between spouses, parents and kids, and the most favourite relationships are between in-laws.

In the show, Raymond has a wife, Debra, and their relationships make everyone who’s watching laugh. Also, there is another important couple: Marie and Frank, Raymond’s parents who always argue with each other. These two couples are very different. However, they have the same problems, the same conflicts between each other. They try to solve conflicts in a funny manner. Sometimes we notice a women’s collision, and sometimes men cooperate to prove they are right. Although, this is a comedy serial and all the problems are made up, if we watch carefully we’ll find answers for our real-life questions. “Many a true word is spoken in jest” in the “Raymond” show.

Misunderstandings between parents and kids could be very funny; it depends how you look at them. In “Everybody Loves Raymond” most of the misunderstandings appeal between Raymond and his mother Marie. It is very funny to watch Marie messing up her son’s life. She always assumes that her purpose to “help” the kids, although it’s not necessarily time sometimes. She treats 40-year-old Raymond as a 14-year-old teenager. It all looks familiar for us. How many times have we had the same issues? Hundreds, but only when we watch it on the screen do we understand how funny and stupid our misunderstanding was.

In-laws conflict is the most common in real life as well as on TV. Many filmmakers use these issues to make their movies more interesting for the audience. It’s a so called “gimmick” for people. We like to laugh about problems, until they are ours. “Raymond” show is very successful in this direction. This is not just conflict between in-laws, who live across the street from each other, it is also a conflict of the generations. Debra is a modern wife who likes to go out. Marie is a typical mother and housewife, who spends half her life cooking. Debra doesn’t want to treat Raymond as a baby, because she needs a man beside her. Marie is the opposite. She wants to kiss and feed her “baby” as often as possible. She thinks Debra is a bad wife, mother, and housekeeper. Sometimes they cooperate to pursue their goals, which are usually fighting with their husbands. Then, when they get what they want, they become enemies again. This genre has become very successful, and it’s used in many great shows.

“Everybody Loves Raymond” includes the best ideas of the comedy show, but it wouldn’t be successful without great actors. Every great script can be messed up by a bad actors. All the actors have managed to reflect our lives with a hint of humour, and makes us sure that this is the best comedy show on national TV.


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