TV dads aren't always like their real-life counterparts. For starters, they're much more photogenic, and they don't swear nearly as much as our actual fathers.
That said, it's not like the dads on TV are completely unrealistic. Just like our real fathers, they can be funny, clumsy, and even helpful from time to time. In fact, we've probably heard more advice from the dads on TV than we've heard words, in general, from our own fathers' mouths. Some of their lessons were questionable, that's for sure (see: Ward Cleaver and Jim Anderson, below), but just like the men who raised us and their questionable advice, it was always coming from a place of love.
In honor of Father's Day, take a few minutes to celebrate 15 of our favorite TV dads, whose lessons we'll always remember even if they didn't use foul language to get their points across.
Mike Brady, 'The Brady Bunch'
Mike Brady may have been a bit bland, but you try being fun and witty when you've got six kids and a live-in maid to support on a single paycheck. He was also a wealth of sound advice, as evidenced by the time he taught Jan to overcome her fear of public speaking by imagining her classmates in their underwear. Genius!
John Walton Sr., 'The Waltons'
"The Waltons" is often described as taking place during a simpler time, but there was nothing simpler about parenting on Walton Mountain. Even still, Johnny Walton did a bang-up job of instilling his seven children with admirable principles and morals, all while making a pair of suspenders seem like a sound fashion choice.
Danny Tanner, 'Full House'
You could argue that the Tanner children had three dads in the household — what with Uncle Joey and Uncle Jesse always hanging around — but Danny was arguably the most traditional, if only because he was more skilled at embarrassing himself in front of his girls.
Eddard Stark, 'Game of Thrones'
With six of his own children and a seventh he kept hostage (it's a long story), Eddard Stark was a fairly prolific father. But he was also one of the only men in the Seven Kingdoms with any ethics. If anybody south of Winterfell raised their kids half as well as Ned did, there wouldn't be so many wars in Westeros.
Jim Anderson, 'Father Knows Best'
Jim Anderson made parenting look easy on "Father Knows Best." When Betty, James or Kathy came home from school with a problem, Jim was always ready with reasonable advice. Episode after episode, he proved that dads really did know best, except for when he was lighting up a cigarette first thing in the morning. (Father didn't know much about lung cancer or emphysema, apparently.)
Burt Hummel, 'Glee'
Single father Burt Hummel tried his best to raise Kurt, and he usually succeeded with flying colors. Although they had little in common on the surface, Burt loved his son unconditionally and respected all of his choices, allowing both Burt and Kurt to learn valuable life lessons from each other.
Phil Dunphy, 'Modern Family'
Often times, Phil Dunphy seemed like more of a child rather than a parental figure, but that was all part of his plan. He saw himself as the "cool" dad to Haley, Alex and Luke, but only his youngest would probably agree. Nevertheless, Phil took an active role in his kids' lives, at least when he wasn't busy mastering the latest slang or memorizing new dance crazes.
Ward Cleaver, 'Leave It to Beaver'
Wally and Beaver were good kids but tremendous screw-ups, which gave Ward plenty of opportunities to practice his gentle brand of parenting. And it usually worked, with Wally and the Beav learning their lessons by the episode's end. In retrospect, however, some of Ward's advice turned out to be hilariously offensive (and downright dangerous).
Hank Hill, 'King of the Hill'
Hank and his son Bobby didn't always see eye to eye (especially on the subject of prop comedy), but that didn't stop Hank from trying to impart his conservative values on the boy. For instance, Bobby will probably never forget the time Hank explained why nobody — but nobody — will eat an overcooked steak at the Hill household.
Dan Conner, 'Roseanne'
It was mom who undoubtedly ruled the roost on "Roseanne," but Dan's contributions to the Conner clan shouldn't be overlooked. He could lay down the law when he needed to, but more often than not, Dan Conner provided his kids with a big flannel-shirtful of comic relief when they needed it most.
Howard Cunningham, 'Happy Days'
If there was anyone on "Happy Days" keeping Richie Cunningham on the straight and narrow, it was Fonzie. But if there were a second voice in Richie's head teaching him right from wrong, it was that of his father's. Mr. C was also a pretty decent surrogate father to Fonzie's pigeons, too.
Gomez Addams, 'The Addams Family'
Just because you wouldn't prefer to raise your children around knives and disembodied hands doesn't mean Gomez's heart wasn't in the right place. The man could barely stand to be apart from his kids, even preferring that they refrain from school so he could teach them to raise thoroughbred spiders at home.
Philip Banks, 'The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'
Philip Banks, or "Uncle Phil" as he was known around the house, was the stern (but usually fair) father figure that Will, Carlton, Hilary and Ashley needed. Sure, he had a tendency to fly off the handle from time to time, but he was usually justified, especially after all the verbal abuse he took from his nephew.
Steve Douglas, 'My Three Sons'
Despite being called "My Three Sons," Steve Douglas actually cared for four boys over the course of the show, as well as two older family members, a stepdaughter, a daughter-in-law, and several grandkids. What we're really saying is that "My Three Sons" is a misleading title considering all the fatherly duties Steve took on.
Michael Taylor and Joey Harris, 'My Two Dads'
It was biologically impossible for both Michael and Joey to be Nicole's biological fathers, but the two of them never bothered to take this case to "Maury" and find out the girl's true parentage. Instead, they raised her as co-dads in Joey's ridiculous loft with his ridiculous car-shaped couch.