There are probably a few people who learned about Family Matters which anchored ABC's "TGIF" block of Friday night family sitcoms for nine seasons — from the sketch on Key & Peele that satirized it. You know the one. Jordan Peele, doing an impeccable impression of Reginald VelJohnson, rants about the ridiculous turn the show has taken since the explosion in popularity of the character of Steve Urkel… only to find out that "Steve Urkel" is not a fictional nerd played by Jaleel White, but an actual malevolent super-entity, whose will cannot be disobeyed. The sketch keeps alive the narrative that Family Matters sharply pivoted from grounded family stories to zany sci-fi adventures over the course of its run, which is true, and suggests that this was the work of a demon, which is plausible. But it also implies that the show was originally designed around the character of Carl Winslow, the family patriarch played by VelJohnson. This is false. The show was inspired by the work of Jo Marie Payton, who played Carl's wife, Harriette Winslow, a character that she originated on ABC's equally legendary sitcom, Perfect Strangers.

By mrtrv