Somehow, Eric Forman was the central character of That '70s Show. Similar to several other sitcom stars over the years, he is presented as a sweet and caring individual who gets ragged on by his friends. He always tries to do the right thing, but every so often makes mistakes. Eric Forman is just like every other ordinary teenager in the world - he just has better writers. Sadly, fans of the series haven’t paid a single bit of attention for the entire eight-year run of the show.
Eric Forman is a walking, talking definition of a hypocrite. He might look like your typical geeky teenager growing up in the seventies, but in reality, Forman is a diabolical sociopath who will do anything or say anything he wants to get his way. FunnyOrDie.com has been doing an expose series, Zack Morris Is Trash, perhaps it’s time for the site to reveal the truth about Eric Albert Forman once and for all. Or not – it’s all just entertainment after all. We’re not going to beholden the fictional character to any sort of sense of moral compass, are we?
In the name of being entertained, we as fans have not only chosen to ignore Eric Forman’s antics, but somehow missed plenty of his evil deeds, or just items that no one noticed. Screen Rant has done the research for you.
Here are 20 Things Wrong With Eric Forman We All Choose To Ignore on That '70s Show.
One item on this list that isn’t Forman being diabolical is when Fox tried to launch another sitcom, this one about the decade of decadence. That '80s Show succeeded in introducing a lot of people to Glen Howerton (Always Sunny) and Chyler Leigh (Supergirl). Howerton played Eric’s cousin, Korey Howard.
Apparently, not enough people liked the show and it was canceled before it could finish out a whole season. Looks like the fans were tired of Forman’s behavior and no interest in watching more of his family members do bad deeds to good people. Brittany Daniel also was on both shows, but she played a much different character on That '70s Show.
In the episode, “Eric’s Hot Cousin,” we’re introduced to Penney, Eric’s cousin. We’re all taught at an early age, that two wrongs don’t make a right, but that doesn’t excuse Forman’s behavior here. While his friends spent the episode ogling her, Forman spent trying to hook up with her.
He was being gross because Penney had convinced him that she was actually adopted and was coming onto him, therefore they weren’t related by blood. However, Kitty was there when she was born. She concocted the whole scheme to get back at Eric for being so mean to her growing up.
Someone once claimed that when the going gets tough, the tough get going. Eric might think he’s tough, since he has a penchant for going. By going, the saying means the tough get going on getting stuff done, by get going on leaving altogether. He leaves one more time before the series finale - this time across the world to Africa.
He left for seemingly altruistic reasons, to be a teacher and have his college paid for. But as we’ve seen over the course of seven years prior, Forman does whatever he wants regardless of other people’s feelings. He spent a year moping and being lazy just to leave.
Obviously, he’s a character and he’s written for, but the only other item on this list that was out of the hands of the character of Eric Forman were his two replacements. The first one, Charlie took a header off the water tower. The actor Bret Harrison had taken another role.
Randy Pearson, on the other hand, was an entirely different story. He was originally cast to be Eric. That certainly wouldn’t have sat well with fans, but thankfully, the writers thought better of it and made Randy an entirely new character. While Topher Grace leaving was the reason for the changes, the creative team could have figured out a better way to fill the void.
Only in sitcom-land would a kid like Eric Forman have friends. There was a kid like him in every neighborhood. He wasn’t athletic enough to hang out with jocks like Kelso and wasn’t cool enough to run with kids like Hyde. He definitely wasn’t popular enough to hang out with girls like Jackie, and the only reason Donna would know who he was is because she lived next door. Fez wouldn’t have known better at first, until someone would clue him in on social norms.
It’s really simple. Eric had a basement to hang out in for circle time, therefore Forman had people coming over to use the space. They eventually became friends, but without a basement, there’s no show, because Forman wouldn’t have friends.
The girl next door and the yearning to date them is a coming of age feeling plenty of people could totally relate to. Donna Pinciotti had so much going for her that dating Eric shouldn’t have even been in her wheelhouse, and yet for some reason, she loved the little guy. Forman clearly only had eyes for Donna.
Until he didn’t...the guy might be one of the biggest jerks in recent sitcom history. He chased her and chased her and finally got the privilege to date her. She tells him she loves her, he responds that he loves cake. She starts becoming a popular DJ and he wants her to spend more time with him. Eric would only try to control her throughout the series and when she couldn’t be controlled, he either broke up with her or ran off.
While his outward appearance might seem like that of a nice, honest guy, Forman’s been lying for a long time. His lies have ruined more than a few lives, too. But instead of coming clean, he just lets his friend Hyde take the rap for destroying a friend’s work.
In the season two “Halloween” episode, this secret is finally revealed. Hyde explains that it’s what started him in on his path to delinquency. Why did he forgive him? Because Hyde is a bigger person that Eric.
For a series with so many diverse personalities, it’s easy to assume that snarky Eric is amongst the smartest in his group. How could he not be? He’s got good parents, Kelso is not the brightest, and Fez barely understands the language enough to comprehend the questions on something like the SATs.
You’d be wrong. He got the lowest score on his SATs. While he had a lot to learn about how to treat Donna, Forman at least knew enough that he needed to work a lot harder in order to be able to marry a girl like Donna.
Jackie Burkhart dated just about every guy on the series, and even some that weren’t. Do you know who she didn’t date? That’s right, she never dated Eric - not even in any of those fantasy cutscenes the show became famous for. That’s because Jackie was always able to see through Eric’s nefarious ways.
After all, all Eric ever did was make fun of her and tease her. Way to make your girlfriend happy buddy, just keep ripping into the best friend. Even his foster brother Hyde was able to see through Jackie’s facade to the good-hearted person she was and had to convince Eric, who only then thought Jackie was a pretty girl.
Seemingly, the only thing Eric was good for was either taking the rap completely for his friends (because he so desperately needed them to like him), like when he claimed he was the one smoking and not Donna. But also, when his friends left him in a lurch as the fall guy, he generally didn’t rat them out (because he so desperately needed them to like him).
Even when everyone bailed on Eric and Donna during a dine and dash. To which, the couple decided to be delinquents as well. That’s just one of the instances where his “friends,” who really only used him for his basement and his naivety never minded leaving him in the lurch.
Eric only had eyes for Donna, right? Even though he never could handle the kind of relationship Donna wanted, he still never dated anyone else. While none of them were ever truly serious, Eric dated a bunch of other girls.
Often times, he was being a terrible person and dating girls just to make Donna jealous, like Connie from Price Mart and Shelley, Eric’s lab partner. Another lie Eric told, was that his dad’s Corvette was his own, just to try and get with Leslie Cannon.
For a guy that claimed to have loved his friends and would always stick up for him. But when it came time to find a new lab partner, Eric ditched all of his friends for Buddy, and his Trans Am. Instead of just welcoming Buddy into his circle of friends, he forsakes his old crew, even forgetting to pick up Hyde and Kelso.
But things got too awkward for Eric when Buddy kisses him. Thankfully, he wasn’t such a bad guy that he stopped being friends with Buddy, but we did never see him again, so you be the judge.
In an effort to control his feminist, very free-spirited girlfriend Donna, Eric would get her a promise ring to ensure they’d be together forever. Considering they’re just teenagers and with the way Eric treats her (ie - pantsing her in public), she isn’t so sure if she wants to accept it. The ever-forward thinking Eric basically says accept the ring or he’ll break up with her, so he breaks up with her.
Eventually, they get back together for some reason, and Donna gives him a promise ring, which he accepts. But it’s also the gaudiest looking ring ever. Do you think Eric accepts the present graciously or rejects it, calling out Donna’s bad taste in jewelry? If you chose the latter, then give yourself the big no-prize.
Eric finally musters up the cajones and asks Donna to marry him. But instead of being happy for them, all of their friends and their parents are vehemently opposed to the idea. Outwardly, it’s generally because they’re too young. In reality, it’s probably because of the giant wad he’s always been to her.
The punk actually stuck to his guns and his desires for an entire season, no matter what was done or said to him. Then he had the audacity to bail on the whole ordeal and not show up at the rehearsal dinner - the night before their wedding!
Donna must really love the slug, since she pretty much just took him back after being let st the altar. If this was real life, someone, somewhere would have slugged him twelve times over by now. Considering he had no college savings, it might be time to get a job and figure out your next move, right?
Wrong. When you’re Eric Forman, deferring any sense of responsibility come as naturally as breathing. He’s an incredibly lazy person, so he shirked off that laziness and passed it off as trying to find himself. At this point, everyone was spent dealing with Forman’s nonsense and just let him be, even though Red should’ve heaved him out of the house.
For such a scrawny little man that runs away from any and all kinds of responsibilities and troubles, every so often, Eric Forman is an uncharacteristically violent person. It’s normally in the name of his family, but he takes a swipe at just anyone at any given time.
He threatened Casey and punches out a guy who talks about Red losing his job. Perhaps most famously, at a football game with his dad, he got into a fight with a Packers fan, because he was wearing a Bears jersey.
Siblings argue and fight, we all know that. In fact, when they don’t fight it seems a little weird, or at least that’s what TV has taught us. There’s arguing and fighting and then there’s just being plain horrible.
While Laurie didn’t make it easy on herself being a bit promiscuous, but her little brother didn’t have to be so annoying about it. He pretty much shamed Laurie for her behavior at every single turn. Even when she did him a favor and married Fez to keep in the county, Eric couldn’t help himself.
Eric gave Donna a promise ring that would mean they’d be together forever. Donna, always the smartest person in the relationship knew this was a terrible idea. She explained she wasn’t ready for a commitment, but Eric delivered an ultimatum, take the ring or break up. Again, still way smarter, Donna chooses option B and breaks up with the yutz.
Somehow, in Eric’s mind, this is all Donna’s fault. He can’t even let her try to be happy with Casey Kelso, who while still not treating Donna right, at least treats her better than Eric ever could, but he still pestered her and pestered her until she broke up with Casey. Instead of instantly taking her back, he says no and she decides it’s better to head to California than deal with Eric’s nonsense all summer long.
Eric is not only hypocritical when it comes to Donna, but he’s also hypocritical in just about every facet of his life. The kid’s loving, doting mother busts her derrière to throw her son a surprise party every year.
While that might seem childish, any normal kid would accept the effort and have fun at your party. Not Eric though, he just incessantly whines that parties are for kids. This coming from a big man-child who loves Star Wars, and actively collects GI Joes.
No matter how hard we all try to not be like our folks, we all inevitably in a lot of ways do become them. That’s mostly because we grow up with our parents as our role models and whatever behavior they exhibit, we most likely end up exhibiting some of the same traits.
The same holds true for Red and Eric. They’re both reserved, they’re both super mean to the ones they love. But when those same people are threatened, they’ll both head to the ends of the Earth to protect them.
What are your opinions on Eric from That '70s Show? Let us know in the comments!