Modern Family: 10 Fictional Families Who Are More Dysfunctional Than The Dunphys

As much as we love Modern Family's Dunphys, Pritchett-Delgados, and Pritchett-Tuckers, they're all dysfunctional in their own glorious way. That's what makes the show such a hit. Today's "modern family" is not a singular defining trait — we're all unique and have our own rules, contrary to the Leave It To Beaver days.

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The Dunphys aren't the only dysfunctional family on TV, though. We've seen a plethora of alarmingly funny families take over our screens, but it's their unusual methods and chaotic family lives that make them so compelling, so relatable. From cartoon families with talking pets to a long line of medical professionals, we have 10 of TV's most dysfunctional families right here.

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Family Guy has been on TV for the past 20 years. Over 300-something episodes, we've seen some of the most dysfunctional things imaginable in the Griffin household. For starters, they have a dog that talks and a baby that can only be understood by their talking dog...

RELATED: 5 Things Family Guy Does Better Than The Simpsons (& Vice Versa)

Peter Griffin (dad) is probably the laziest father on TV shouldn't have been allowed to have three kids in the first place. Louis (mom) is constantly overworking to make sure her household is running because her husband doesn't do anything else besides bring home a paycheck. Meanwhile, their kids Chris, Meg, and Stewie are so completely lost, it's sometimes sad to watch. They're a disaster of an animated family.


This horror TV show lasted five seasons and introduced the most frightening mother/son duo around: Norma and Norman Bates. After Norma's  husband dies, the two buy and live in a motel for a fresh start.

As we quickly learn, though, Norman's mental health is deteriorating while his mother would do anything to save him from himself (and even herself). It's not every day we see a mother and son kill a man either, so it's safe to say they have a bond that's unlike any family we've ever seen.


The cast of All in the Family

First premiering in 1971, All in the Family revolved around the awkwardly blunt Bunker family. Today, a show as objectionable as this would never be able to get off the ground, but in the 70s it was practically par for the course.

RELATED: 10 Things You Never Knew About All In The Family

Running for nine seasons, we see Archie (the crotchety dad) being constantly cruel to his adorable wife Edith. Their daughter Gloria also gets criticized for choosing to marry Michael, whom her father so "lovingly" calls Meathead. The premise for the show is to show the differences between parents and their children in the 60s and 70s and just how fast things are changing. Now, in 2019, it's pretty hard to watch.


Okay so, the Lannisters from Game of Thrones are most likely the most uncomfortable family in TV history. Throughout the course of the show, family members killed one another, illegitimate children popped up... 'complicated' would probably be the word.

Is it sweet that this family has a tight bond and would do anything to uphold their family's name? Sure. Is the way they go about that at all reasonable or healthy? That's a hard no.


One of the first sitcoms of its kind, Seinfeld was a breath of fresh air when it took off in 1989. The show centered on the friend group of Jerry, Elaine, George, and Cramer, and we saw these friends run around New York dealing with relatable (and awkward) circumstances.

RELATED: Seinfeld: 10 Quotes About Relationships We Can All Relate To

We saw the relationship between Jerry and his parents and George and his parents more often than the others, and it's safe to say that the Costanzas are hilariously weird. Frank and Estelle, George's adorable parents, constantly bicker. With her parrot-like voice, she's squawking over her husband – never really listening to her son, George. However annoying they can be, George lives with his parents when he falls on rough times and is emotionally attached to his parents as an adult.


Like Family Guy and SupernaturalGrey's Anatomy is one of those shows that never seems to end. Already on its 15th season, Grey's Anatomy has had its changes over the years, but the relationship between Meredith and her mother, Ellis Grey, has been a bothersome one.

Ellis never gave Meredith the credit she deserved in life – she always made her feel second best even though Meredith went on to become an incredible woman, doctor, and mother. She never could lean on her dad when her mother was being rough, because he was off starting another family, leaving her in the dust.


Hanging on for five seasons, Arrested Development was a great show. Starring an amazing cast of Jason Bateman, Will Arnet, Michael Cera, Portia de Rossi, and many more, we were introduced to the Bluths. After Michael's father goes to jail, he's left trying to run the business before it falls apart.

RELATED: Arrested Development: Tobias’ 10 Best Running Jokes and Gags

Meanwhile, he's also the only level-headed man in the family, who has to deal with his snobby family's attitude while also being a single dad. All the kids in the family are self-sabotaging in their own way, leaving Michael feeling like the only capable one.


Rosanne was a classic hit in the 80s, revolving around a family who were raw and problematic, yet happy. The reason Rosanne lasted as long as it did is because it was an honest portrayal of a blue-collar family.

With four kids and two working parents, we see this family deal with the classic hardships of a "normal" family. From long hours to poor diets to financial troubles, this family sure had their struggles, but they were seen as "relatable" to many viewers.


Appearing on the BBC, Peaky Blinders is a British show that reached the US via various streaming sites. The historical drama takes place in the 19th century and centers itself around the Shelby family. The Shelby family are head honchos for the Peaky Blinders gang, and we see this family go through the wringer for the sake of their family name and gang.

RELATED: Peaky Blinders: 5 Historical Facts The Show Gets Right (& 5 It Gets Totally Wrong)

As endearing as it is to see a family do anything for one another, they sure do have one confused dynamic, dealing with murders, cover-ups, betrayals, and raising kids in a gang atmosphere.


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The Simpsons have been on air for nearly 30 years! With 30 seasons and over 600 episodes to its name, we've seen the Simpson family deal with a lot over the years. Homer and Marge seem to really have a soft spot for one another—but like the Griffins on Family Guy—Homer doesn't appreciate everything his wife, Marge, does for their family.

They also have a brainiac daughter, Lisa, who isn't being pushed enough, a troublemaking son, Bart, who constantly gets in trouble at school, and a baby girl named Maggie. This family may love each other, but like the Dunphys, they sure do show it in weird ways!

NEXT: The Simpsons: 5 Relationships Fans Were Behind (& 5 They Rejected)

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