There are hundreds of sitcoms around today, but not very many are remembered as fondly as That ‘70s Show. The series was a coming of age story revolving around a group of teenagers who grew up in Wisconsin in the 1970s. While the show was set in the ‘70s, it was actually filmed from 1998 to 2006. For eight years, the show was on the air for eight seasons and had a total of 200 episodes.
Instead of casting well-known actors in the roles of Eric Foreman, Donna Pinciotti, Steven Hyde, Jackie Burkhart, Fez, and Michael Kelso, the showrunners decided to cast relatively unknown actors. In fact, That ‘70s Show was the very first acting gig for Topher Grace, Laura Prepon, and Ashton Kutcher.
The series had a big fan base while it was airing new episodes, and still does to this day since many stations air re-runs of the show. Even though That '70s Show has a big fan base, there are still some things about the series that don’t make a lot of sense. After all, no movie or TV show is without some type of flaw, but some people choose to ignore certain mistakes because they love the show so much.
With that said, here are the 20 Things Wrong With That '70s Show Everyone Chooses To Ignore.
20 Jackie Kept Going Back To Kelso
Jackie and Kelso were one of the first couples the show saw. When the series premiered, Jackie and Kelso were already dating, but they probably shouldn’t have been. Jackie constantly got on Kelso’s nerves and Kelso was constantly unfaithful to Jackie. Even though Jackie remained mostly loyal to Kelso during their relationship, Kelso was unfaithful to Jackie with Pam Macy and even Eric’s sister Laurie.
Jackie and Kelso had an on again/off again relationship for the entire series, but they ultimately did not end up together when the show came to its conclusion. That being said, Jackie really shouldn’t have gone back to Kelso so many times since he treated her so horribly before.
19 The Timeline And It's Extra Holidays
While the show takes place in the 1970s, the series was not filmed in that same decade. The show ran from 1998 to 2006, which totals eight years, but the timeline in the show didn’t run for eight years. When the show begins, the year is 1976. Meanwhile, the final season shows the gang welcoming in the new decade.
Even though the events in the show lasted for four years, the series had a Christmas-themed episode in almost every season. While having a Christmas episode during the Holiday season was a way to boost ratings, it still doesn’t excuse how messed up it made the timeline of the show.
18 The Show About Eric’s Cousin
While this mistake doesn’t necessarily have to do with That ‘70s Show, it was definitely a mistake for Fox to invest in That ‘80s Show. Many people probably haven’t even heard of the show since it was such a huge failure, but in 2002, Fox tried to bank off of the success of That ‘70s Show by creating another sitcom with the same structure as the previous show, only it was set in the 1980s.
That ‘80s Show had many of the same writers and staff as That ‘70s Show, but it isn’t considered to be a direct spinoff of That ‘70s Show. That being said, it does share a small connection to the original show since the main character is Corey Howard, who happens to be Eric Foreman’s cousin.
17 The Eighth Season
While That ‘70s Show has a strong and loyal fan base, many people will admit that the show was just on the air for too long. Earlier seasons are arguably much better than later seasons, and the eighth season really just didn’t need to happen at all.
Both Topher Grace and Ashton Kutcher had a very limited role in the eighth season, and the show just didn’t feel the same with two of the main characters missing. The series tried to replace them with different characters, but the effect just wasn’t the same. That being said, both actors returned for the series finale, but the show shouldn’t have continued on without them in the first place.
16 Kelso Becaming A Cop
One of the most baffling parts of That ‘70s Show isn’t the relationships or some of the obvious continuity errors. Instead, it’s the fact that Kelso becomes a police officer in season 6. Kelso had multiple run-ins with the law in previous seasons, and did illegal activities with his friends on a daily basis. Even though this change to Kelso’s character was mainly done for laughs, it really just didn’t make any sense.
Kelso was always dimwitted, so it seems unlikely that he ever would have stood a chance at the police academy. In the ninth episode of season 6, he even leaves his cruiser unattended, which allows Fez and Hyde to steal it. Also, don’t forget that he accidentally set the academy on fire with a flare gun.
15 Fez’s Wife
Laurie was often mean to Eric and his friends, but when she returned in season 5, she had a new attitude and even did something incredibly nice for Fez. In season 5, it was revealed that Fez was going to get deported since he got arrested for vandalizing the water tower. All of his friends were bummed that he was going to have to leave the U.S., but Laurie stepped up and married Fez so that he could stay in the country.
While this was one of Laurie’s nicer moments on the show, the plot point was completely abandoned after season 5. Obviously their marriage wasn’t based on love, but it is still weird that it was never mentioned again.
14 Eric Moving To Africa
Eric was the youngest child in the Foreman family and was rarely respected by his friends and family. He was always seen as nerdy, clumsy, and even lazy at times. That being said, in season 7, Eric decides that he wants to become a teacher. Topher Grace didn’t return for season 8 since he was about to start filming Spider-Man 3, which meant that Eric couldn’t be a teacher in Point Place, Wisconsin.
Instead, the writers decided to ship him off to Africa to teach for a year. Since Spider-Man 3 was a big opportunity for Grace, it makes sense why he wouldn’t return for season 8 until the finale, but the story for Eric just didn’t really mesh well with his character.
13 The Opening Credits
One of the most memorable aspects from That ‘70s Show was the opening credits. The opening credits featured the cast driving in a car singing the song “In the Street”, which was written by Alex Chilton and Chris Bell from the band Big Star. While this band wrote the song, Todd Griffin performed the song for the first season with Cheap Trick replacing him after season 1.
While the song and the catchphrase “Hello, Wisconsin!” often get stuck in people’s heads, the opening also features a mistake. Since the show takes place in the ‘70s, all of the cars on the road should be from 1976 or before, but a Ford Expedition from 1997-2002 can be seen in every single episode thanks to the opening title sequence.
12 The Water Tower
The water tower is a common hang out spot for the gang in That ‘70s Show. The water tower was first featured in season 1 when the kids attempt to draw a leaf of an illegal substance, but it ends up looking like a hand giving someone the middle finger. Many of the characters fall off the water tower, mostly Kelso, usually by breaking the railing that is on the walkway.
Usually, the characters just suffer a broken arm, but it doesn’t make sense that this is the only injury they sustain. It also doesn’t make sense that the town of Point Place wouldn’t fix the railing or do something to prevent people from climbing it since it is obviously a safety hazard.
11 Jackie Never Called Anyone By Their Last Names
A group of friends will usually have nicknames for certain people in their group. Eric’s last name was usually at the butt-end of jokes, but the entire group often called everyone by their last names. It was usually the guys in the group who addressed each other by their last names, but Donna even occasionally talked about her friends using their last name.
That being said, Jackie never once called any of her friends by their last name. It may have just been part of Jackie’s character, but it doesn’t make a lot of sense why she would be the only person in the group to not do this.
10 Two Different Actresses Played Laurie
It isn’t unheard of for a show to cast one actor or actress and then replace them along the way. This happened in That ‘70s Show with the character Laurie Foreman, Eric’s sister. Lisa Robin Kelly had a recurring role as Laurie for the first two seasons, but left mid-way through the third season, due to an addiction to alcohol.
Her character had to be temporarily written out of the show, which is why the show explains that she went off to beauty school. Kelly returned for a few episodes in season 5, but was quickly replaced by Christina Moore for season 6. Laurie Foreman didn’t show up at all for the final two seasons of the show, and Lisa Robin Kelly unfortunately passed away in 2013 at the age of 43.
9 Donna’s Disappearing Siblings
While some TV shows change actors for certain characters after a few seasons, other TV shows even forget about characters completely. Many people assume that Donna is an only child, but she actually had two sisters on the show. Not only was Donna’s sister named Tina seen in the episode “Eric’s Burger Job”, but her other sister named Valerie was mentioned in the episode “Eric’s Birthday”.
Even though the show introduced these two characters, after season 2, neither sister was ever mentioned again and the writers even made Donna an only child. That ‘70s Show isn’t the only program to ever do this, but it is always frustrating when a show introduces a character, only to completely forget about them later on.
8 The Constant Use Of Red’s Basement... Even After Eric Goes To Africa
One of the most common elements of That ‘70s Show was something called the circle, which was a way for Fox to show teenagers using illegal substances without getting in trouble. One of the common settings for the circle was in Eric’s basement. Even when the characters weren’t using this substance that was widely used in the 1970s, the gang would often hang out in Red’s basement and watch TV.
That being said, neither of these scenarios really make sense. First of all, even though Red catches the kids doing this illegal activity in his basement in season 7, one would think that he would have caught them a lot sooner. Also, letting a bunch of teenagers hang out in his basement when Eric was living there was one thing, but it’s unlikely that he would have let them hang out in his basement after Eric moved to Africa.
7 Fez's Background & Personality
One of the biggest mysteries of the show is where Fez is from. Fans have been wondering for years, and the show even jokes about the gang not knowing where he is from or what his last name is. While this isn’t really considered a mistake, many things that happen to Fez are. Even though people weren’t as politically correct in the 1970s as they are today, people were often really racist towards Fez.
As if this wasn’t bad enough, the writers made Fez act incredibly inappropriate towards women with him often mistreating the opposite gender. While these elements may have been true to the ‘70s time period, it's a questionable decision to include it in a show that was filmed from 1998 to 2006.
6 Who Everyone Ended Up With
During the eight seasons of that That ‘70s Show, the group of friends dated a lot of people and occasionally each other. Donna and Eric’s relationship was often at the center of the story, but the relationships between Kelso and Jackie, Hyde and Jackie, and even Midge and Bob played an important role in the story.
While Donna and Eric end up getting back together in the series finale, the show also ends with some relationships continuing that fans didn’t like. Many people wanted to see Hyde and Jackie end up together, but instead, Hyde ends up marrying a woman named Samantha. Even though their marriage is proven to be illegal, this relationship was a meaningless part of season 8. Also, there were not very many people who truly wanted Jackie to end up with Fez, but it happened anyway.
5 Mrs. Foreman’s Missing Dog
In season 5, the Foreman’s bring a dog into their home named Schatzi. Red gave Kitty the dog in order to help with her mood swings, and Schatzi even ended up partaking in the circle a few times. That being said, the dog disappears for quite some time on the show, only making appearances every now and again.
In season 7, it is revealed that Schatzi was hiding under the house. In the episode “It’s Only Rock and Roll”, Eric leans on a Buddha statue and crushes the dog, but Schatzi is seen at the end of the episode with a little bandage on his head. While Schatzi was alive and well at the end of the episode, the dog never made another appearance on the show.
4 Trying To Replace Eric With Randy
After Topher Grace left the show at the end of season 7 to film Spider-Man 3, Josh Meyers’ character named Randy Pearson was introduced to the show. Originally, Meyers was going to replace Grace as Eric, but he ended up just becoming another character on the show. With that in mind, Randy is often considered one of the most disliked characters in the show’s run.
While the series tried to replace one character with another, the end result just didn’t work. Randy was an unnecessary part of the final season, and his relationship with Donna just felt forced and awkward. Instead of trying to replace Eric with another character, the show should have just focused on developing the remaining characters, but of course that didn’t happen.
3 How Old Was Everyone?
One element of That ‘70s Show that is pretty widely known is the fact that the core six cast members were all relatively new actors and they were all fairly young. While Topher Grace, Danny Masterson, and Ashton Kutcher were all in their 20s, Laura Prepon was 19 when the show started, and Mila Kunis was only 14 when the show premiered.
Despite their ages, though, they all portrayed characters in high school. That being said, their exact ages are nearly impossible to track since the timeline is often messed up. The show uses the license plate at the end of the show to keep track of the date, but that isn’t enough to keep the timeline straight or to calculate each character’s age.
2 Laurie’s Spoiled Nature
When it comes to siblings, Laurie and Eric are extremely different. Laurie is often mean to Eric and is incredibly manipulative, while Eric is seen as a clumsy nerd who can often be a smart-aleck. Even though they are so different, Red clearly favors Laurie and Kitty obviously favors Eric. That being said, it is surprising that Red lets Laurie get away with basically anything.
Given Red’s strict and straight-forward demeanor, it would make more sense if Red was able to see right through his daughter’s promiscuous behavior and punish her as much as he does Eric. Even if Red liked his daughter more than his son, it doesn’t seem to fit Red’s character to let her get away with as much as she does.
1 The Many Continuity Errors
Since the show takes place in the 1970s, the showrunners had to be extremely careful about what products they did and didn’t put in the series. Much like any show that is a period piece, there were some items that slipped into the series that are now considered continuity errors. For example, Krispy Kreme doughnuts are seen in many episodes, even though they didn’t come to Wisconsin until 2000.
Since Eric is a nerd, he of course has Spider-Man sheets, but the illustration of Spider-Man is of the 1990s cartoon. In season 1, Kitty is putting peanut butter on celery, although the jar of Skippy she is using is from the current year, not 1976. This only begins to scratch the surface, as That ‘70s Show, unfortunately, has a ton of continuity errors like this.
Are there any other thing wrong with That ‘70s Show that everyone ignores? Sound off in the comments!