5. Monica and Chandler (Friends)
I'm still baffled when anyone brings up the relationship between Ross and Rachel in a positive light - they were actually a horrible couple together who always brought out the worst in one another and their constant break-ups should have been indicative that it wasn't worth Rachel throwing away her career to be with that dipshit. And especially when doing so ignores the real great couple in Friends (outside of Carol and Susan): Monica and Chandler. I know a lot of people aren't too wild on this coupling - but often for one of the reasons I love them together so much: they were pretty boring together.
While all of other relationships on Friends had wild ups and downs, Monica and Chandler were....steady. After the whole "secret relationship" thing, they just got to be a sweet couple who enjoyed one another's company and supported each other's careers and life decisions. It was a bit of a shift for each character, and downplayed some of their older idiosyncracies - but there's an element of truth in that. Finding a longterm, stable, loving relationship DOES change people - but the people Monica and Chanlder became were more mature, more measured, and more REAL than pretty much everyone else on the show (as Joey became absurdly dumb, Phoebe impossibly weird, and Ross became...EXTREMELY Ross). While all the other characters were spinning off into becoming parodies of themselves, Chandler and Monica remained somewhat restrained - more focused on the troubles and trevails that come with being in a serious relationship.
Not to say they didn't occaisonally have some over-the-top wacky adventures - like when Monica became convinced Chandler was super into shark porn....but instead of shame him or make him feel bad, she tried incorporating it into their love-making. It was all a big misunderstanding, but it shows how committed the two of them truly were to each other.
4. Andy and April (Parks & Recreation)
Getting Andy and April Ludgate together on Parks & Rec was a stroke of genius - on the surface, the two couldn't appear more different: April was a sullen, deeply sarcastic misanthrope, while Andy was a dumb, overly excitable human golden retriever. And yet the two of them together work so well - because they complement each other perfectly. They share the same disdain for real work and the same love for goofing around, and Andy helps bring April out of her shell while April helps Andy...not make horribly dumb decisions for himself 24/7. They're impetuousness and affection for each other was so immediate, the writers got them surprise-married only a few episodes into their relationship - and it felt completely unexpected but so, so right. These two were meant for each other - even moreso than Leslie and Ben (sorry, trying to keep it to one couple per thing and they were in a close second).
3. Bob Vance & Phyllis Lapin
When you think of the classic, whirlwind romance from The Office that still inspires couples today, you can only think of two people: Phyllis and Bob Vance. You didn't seriously think I would say Jim Halpert and Pam Beasley did you? Pam came out and told Karen she was interested in her boyfriend in front of everyone - and Jim literally just abandoned Karen in NYC without a second thought so that he could go ask out his old crush. Then they went on to become one of the most insufferable couples in TV history - a mix between way-too-sweet saccharine-ness and both realizing the other wasn't really right for them (Jim buying a house without talking to Pam, Jim taking a job offer without talking to Pam, Jim...well, it's a lot of Jim's fault). But Bob Vance and Phyllis? That was a couple for the ages.
Here's a small list of things that happened in their relationship:
- Bob rejected the idea of having a stripper at his bachelor party outright (out of respect for Phyllis)
- Bob gave Phyllis the biggest (and best) Valentine's gift, by far
- Bob Vance bid $1,000 on an auction just for a hug from Phyllis
- The two kept their love life steamy by having sex in the bathroom of a restaurant the two were at with Jim and Pam
- Bob Vance bought perfume for Phyllis in Metropolitan Orlando. It's made from real pine. And if you don't know who Bob Vance is, then you have a lot to learn about this town, sweetie.
If you think Jim and Pam are the true love story of The Office, you need to reconsider.
2. Coach & Mrs. Coach
Yes, I know the titular couple of Friday Night Lights are actually named Eric and Tami Taylor, but they will always be Coach and Mrs. Coach to me - perhaps the strongest and most realistic marriage I've ever seen on a TV drama. See, most TV dramas feel the need to inject DRAMA into relationships (which makes sense, I guess) - one partner is tempted to cheat, lots of fighting and yelling, split on an issue, etc. But Friday Night Lights showed something unique - Coach and Mrs. Coach loved each other, supported each other, and never let things really get too dramatic between them (except for a minor subplot in season 2, but all Friday Night Lights fans have agreed to pretend season 2 never happened).
It's not that Coach and Mrs. Coach didn't ever disagree - they did, but even when they had differing thoughts, they respect one another and never really let it affect their marriage in any meaningful sense. The two took time out of their lives to make sure they were spending enough quality time together, helping the other out, and really putting the work into the marriage (that every marriage needs).
Plus, they are both good-looking as hell, and that couldn't have hurt.
1. Morticia & Gomez Addams
The 90s film adaptation of legendary comic strip / cheesy 60s sitcom, The Addams Family, is a pretty remarkable thing: for one, it's GREAT. It took an unbelievably campy (and usually not all that funny) setup of the black-and-white sitcom from 30 years earlier and made it hysterical - largely through FULLY COMMITTING to its absurdist premise and wisely contrasting it against the modern world of 1990s suburban America. The creators of the films did an incredible job in really allowing the characters to be as dark and twisted as possible - all while existing as a skewed version of the typical nuclear family. And at the center of that were Morticia and Gomez.
Grounding the genuinely weird and out there premise with the very real (if over-the-top) love between Morticia and Gomez was the real masterstroke - if these characters were just wild parodies of gothic horror, it would be impossible to really invest yourself or care about their adventures one way or another. But the films really made you believe this was a family - and that was all buoyed by the impossibly passionate marriage of Morticia and Gomez. They supported each other to any end, they fought for one another, and they constantly lusted after one another. They were the PERFECT COUPLE - the kind of romantic relationship we should all strive for. All the darkness and horror was just a mask for one of the healthiest and most ideal relationships ever portrayed on film.
If your partner speaking French doesn't make you utter "cara mia" and immediately begin kissing them, you should probably re-evaluate your love life.