The long-running and much-beloved sitcom Full House represents an era of television long gone: the days of the wholesome TGIF sitcoms, where there were hugs at the end of every episode, and a meaningful lesson to be learned at every turn. Following the extended Tanner family in their adventures and misadventures throughout life in San Francisco, the series ran for eight seasons and nearly 200 episodes from 1987 to 1995, before launching a Netflix-based spinoff Fuller House in 2016.
As we've already mentioned, Full House often featured Very Special Episodes, where the younger characters learned valuable life lessons that everyone could use in their everyday lives. However, there were also plenty of episodes that went over the top and featured storylines so nonsensical and so impractical, the episodes were often difficult to endure. Here, we recap some of the series' finest episodes and some of the episodes that never should have seen the light of day.
10 Worst: A House Divided
In many ways, the seventh season finale "A House Divided" feels like it could have been a series finale. According to some rumors, it was once even meant to be just that, before a surprise renewal was issued for another season. "A House Divided" follows the Tanner family as they consider selling their iconic home to a wealthy old man (Lou Bond) who returns to the neighborhood, expressing interest in purchasing the house he grew up in.
The episode is full of plenty of emotional beats and important conversations. But it also features some truly ridiculous storylines, including Michelle and her pal Denise trying to convince Mr. Bond that the home is slanted, leaking, and infested with vermin - in the form of many, many, many dogs.
9 Best: Silence Is Not Golden
Full House may be easy to mock for its frequent use of Very Special Episodes, but there's no denying that the series is often at its best when it discusses difficult subjects and handles them in meaningful ways. The sixth season episode "Silence is Not Golden" is one such case, as it reinforces the importance of not judging people on face value, and then reveals some truly heartbreaking backstory for an episodic character.
Stephanie learns that Charles, a student she's never gotten along with, is being physically abused by his father. She confides in Uncle Jesse about this fact, despite being sworn to secrecy by Charles, and Jesse takes the necessary action to report Charles' father to the authorities. It leads to some truly difficult discussions about what's right and wrong between Jesse and Stephanie, culminating in a truly heartbreakingly beautiful moment when Stephanie wordlessly walks to her father, Danny, before hugging and kissing him for being a wonderful father.
8 Worst: Love On The Rocks
It's not super realistic to expect everyone to live happily ever after with their first loves and high school sweethearts. So, perhaps it was only a matter of time before D.J. Tanner and Steve Hale went their separate ways. It's just a real shame that the series decided to break them up in a totally out of character way as it did in the seventh season episode "Love on the Rocks."
The show forces a storyline that features D.J. deciding she and Steve are no longer romantically suited for each other, just because they've apparently aged out of the hot and heavy honeymoon phase. It's a terrible message to send to viewers, and a total insult to the characters, too. The episode also features a rather poor in taste storyline of the family trying to convince Joey that he had won millions of dollars. Pranks are common in Joey's world, but sometimes, things just go too far.
7 Best: Fogged In
Full House may be at its best when it touches on incredibly emotional subjects; however, it also often shines when it embraces the familiar storyline of a comedy of errors. Sometimes, the unexpected occurs causing plans to go awry, leading to some truly hilarious situations. The season two episode "Fogged In" perfectly depicts that fact. When San Francisco is set upon by a particularly thick fog, all of the Tanner family, as well as extended members and friends, are trapped inside the Tanner home.
Cabin fever settles in, forcing Jesse to snap at D.J., and then be required to forgive her. Joey and his girlfriend are unable to go on their planned trip, and when he comes home to get back in his bed, he finds that Jesse's mother, Irene, is sleeping in it. Kimmy is stuck in the house and keeps all the girls awake with her nonstop snoring. It makes for plenty of awkward situations, and nonstop laughs, too.
6 Worst: You Pet It, You Bought It
The eighth season episode "You Pet It, You Bought It" might as well just be known as "the one where Michelle buys a donkey." Because that's literally all that happens in the episode. After making quite a steal selling hundreds of dollars worth of lemonade, Michelle goes out into town to buy herself something nice, only to return home to the cozy neighborhood with a fully grown, smelly, squawking donkey that she names Shorty.
The donkey wreaks havoc on the Tanners and the family's home. Shorty destroys Stephanie's geography project, causes D.J. to have a massive allergic reaction, keeps most of the family awake all night, destroys a priceless (but hideous) portrait, and requires being serenaded with the "Three's Company" theme song at all hours of the night by Jesse. It's hard to believe this story ever got greenlit.
5 Best: Joey's Place
Full House was still finding its footing in its first season, as character's personalities and backstories became more refined over time. That said, the series still managed to produce one of its best-ever episodes in the tenth episode, "Joey's Place." Joey is about to embark on a comedy tour of college campuses for the next few weeks, and he realizes just how much he's responsible for in the Tanner family home. However, the family seems to think they'll be able to get by just fine without him, which hurts his feelings.
As it turns out, the family is secretly making plans to give Joey a room of his own, rather than forcing him to continue living in an alcove. When Joey returns from his tour, all of his belongings are missing from the alcove, leading him to think that the family no longer needs him. However, he soon finds out they've moved all of his belongings, plus some of his old ones from his mom's house, into the home's now renovated garage. Joey's part of the family, after all, and he deserves a place of his own.
4 Worst: On The Road Again
After the totally out of character way the series forces Steve and D.J. to break up, the series' eighth and final season almost doubles down on D.J.'s love life, as it paired her up with two men who were totally wrong for her. Arguably the worst of them, however, was Viper, an older member of Jesse's new band, the hideously named Hot Daddy and the Monkey Puppets.
The eighth season episode "On the Road Again" finds Viper and D.J.'s clandestine relationship becoming public knowledge, and it's impossible to enjoy based on that level of focus alone. It also features Jesse and his band being hired for the wrong gig - a polka fest in a bar, which requires them to stay in a totally seedy motel. It's an episode full of cliches and groanworthy characters and some of the series' worst writing overall.
3 Best: The Last Dance
There are plenty of emotional moments in Full House. Some of the series' most heartbreaking and most well-acted occur very late in the show, particularly in the seventh season episode "The Last Dance." Jesse's grandfather, the adorable and beloved Papouli, comes to visit the Tanner family for the first time since the fourth season episode "Greek Week." Papouli spreads love and joy everywhere he goes, baking Greek treats with the girls and teaching Michelle traditional Greek dances. He even promises to help Michelle at her school's show and tell event.
Tragically, Papouli passes away during his time at the Tanner home. The family processes the loss in their own ways, with Jesse refusing to break down and trying to be the leader the family needs, and Michelle keeping all of her pain hidden because she thinks she has to be strong, too. In the end, Jesse and Michelle bond through their shared loss and pain, weeping in each other's embrace, before Jesse accompanies Michelle to school and carries on Papouli's legacy by taking part in the Greek dances with her.
2 Worst: My Left And Right Foot
Just when you thought things couldn't possibly get worse than "the one where Michelle brings home a donkey," allow us to remind you of "the one where Michelle thinks she has monstrously large feet and begins to dream about her feet taking over the house." After her older sisters tease her for her shoe size while shopping, Michelle suddenly begins to panic and think that she is destined to go to clown school. Her panic escalates to the level that she is willing to do anything to shrink her feet, including wrapping them in ice.
It's some of the most mean-spirited behavior we see from the Tanner sisters, and features far too much ludicrous behavior and dreaming. The episode also finds another mean-spirited storyline, where Becky (who had once been able to sing well) suddenly can't carry a tune and finds herself the source of mockery by Jesse, Joey, and Danny alike.
1 Best: Fuller House
The entire premise of Full House hinges on the fact that the Tanner family home is very, very full. It's not until the fourth season episode, "Fuller House," that it seems like things could finally change, regarding the status quo. With Jesse and Becky newly married, the subject of where they will live as a married couple quickly becomes an issue. Jesse plans to move out and live in Becky's apartment, but that changes everything for the Tanners - and for little Michelle, in particular.
Michelle has always had the closest bond with her Uncle Jesse, and the two of them have a truly heartbreaking goodbye in the episode, exchanging a framed pink bunny from Jesse's room and Michelle's beloved stuffed pig as goodbye presents. However, it quickly becomes clear that Jesse feels much more at home, and much happier, in the Tanner family house than he ever could in Becky's apartment - which leads to Becky announcing that they'll be moving into the house, and living in the soon to be renovated attic. The Full House gets a little bit fuller that day and leads to some of the series' most joyful reunions.