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TV Kitchens with Problems.

Our Kitchen Designers Break-Down Famous TV Kitchens with Problems.

Ricky Ricardo in the kitchen pouring coffee.

Why are most TV kitchens so terribly designed?

Why do architects, interior designers, contractors, and even some kitchen designers place so little value on good and even safe kitchen design?  One of the reasons may be that we are bombarded with bad kitchen designs from almost every TV show and movie we watch. Seeing these problem designs thousands of times legitimizes bad kitchen design and makes it more acceptable.

Below are some of the most famous TV kitchens and why they are poorly designed.

What’s wrong with the I love Lucy kitchen seen above?  There is a window over the range with curtains, a fire hazard. Plus, no countertop on either side of the range which is also dangerous. When there isn’t enough or any countertop next to burners (other than the front work area) people passing by can ignite loose hair or clothing.

Brady Bunch Maid Alice cooking

The Brady Bunch TV kitchen should have 9 inches of countertop in back of the cooktop to be safe.  Shame on Mike Brady he is an architect!


Cosby family in the kitchen
Theo and Dr Huxtable in the kitchen

The Huxtables on The Cosby Show have the same problem. No countertop on the side and back of the cooktop.

With the cooktop burners right next to the phone and the refrigerator it is a good thing Cliff Huxtable is a doctor.

 House of Cards kitchen


Mad about you kitchen

Both Paul and Jamie on Mad About You, and Francis and Claire Underwood on House of Cards have TV kitchens with ranges without countertops on either side making them unsafe. Especially right next to a doorway. The Secret Service is overlooking one possible danger to their charge.

Partridge Family kitchen
Partridge Family dining area

The Partridge Family has no countertop on the right side of their cooktop.

Again, the wall phone is right next to the flames.  If the Partridges catch on fire, they won’t be able to “get happy” as their theme song implores.

Seinfeld Kitchen
Scene from How I met your mother

Seinfeld and How I Met Your Mother have the same problems mentioned above.  And Friends who followed Seinfeld on TV Thursday nights had Monica and Rachel with no hood and wood only a few inches over their powerful professional range.

Friends. Monica's Kitchen

The low hanging cabinets left of the refrigerator in Dexter’s kitchen below are dangerous to anyone over 6 feet 4 inches.

But should we really be surprised that a mass murderer has a dangerous TV kitchen?

Dexter kitchen

I guess all of these TV characters should just be happy they didn’t have the ugliest TV kitchen of all time.

Honeymooners' Kitchen
Alice Kramden’s kitchen on The Honeymooners.


Does your favorite TV show’s kitchen have any of the problems we saw above?  Chances are they do.

Other Relevant blogs:

Hoping your real-life kitchen is safe.  As Julia said…

Bon Appetit!


3 Replies to “TV Kitchens with Problems.”

  1. Dave

    I love The Brady Bunch kitchen.

  2. Jackie

    This is really funny. A request: evaluate the spectacular kitchen that started the got to have a white kitchen craze: Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton falling in love in her fabulous kitchen in the movie “Something’s Gotta Give.” Here is the link:

    1. pmcalary[ Post Author ]

      Hi Jackie,
      Great question and quite a coincidence. I referenced that kitchen incorrectly in a speech I gave several years ago as the kitchen from the movie AS Good as it Gets. It actually IS a well designed kitchen. And while I might have done it differently it sets off no alarm bells. Here is the floor plan I believe:
      And here is part of my speech referencing the kitchen from the wrong movie. You can see Jack Nicholson in the kitchen in back of me at the start of the video:

  3. Rhonda Byer

    I never even noticed bad TV kitchen designs I was too involved watching the shows, except I did notice and agree that the Honeymooner’s show had the worst kitchen, and home for that matter. I loved this article, it made me laugh and smile. I just hope good TV shows like the ones mentioned always stay on for future generations so they can too be happy and also enjoy not notice bad kitchen designs 🙂

    1. pmcalary[ Post Author ]

      Hi Rhonda,
      Agreed! The best shows seem to have the worst kitchens. Possibly they are so focused on the content of the show that kitchens seem less important. If memory serves, the Sopranos was a good show that also had no kitchen design mistakes. I guess organized crime breads an organized kitchen. 🙂

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