I probably should have said “couples” because despite the Valentine’s Day proximity of this post, I’m not speaking strictly romantically. Couples come in all varieties, you know. BFFs, coworkers, even frenemies can make for a good couple.
These are just the first five faves that came to my mind and they are listed in no particular order. Please note: These are my personal faves, not the couples I think are objectively the best ever. Just in case you want to die on any hills in the comments. Make your own list.
Magnum and Higgins, Magnum PI–Obviously, I’m talking about the original 1980 series and not the 2018 reboot as the heteronormative inevitability of romantically pairing Magnum and Higgins is one of the main reasons as to why I stopped watching the latter. I’ve also discussed in depth the unconventional bromance of the the 1980 Magnum and Higgins that I find so fascinating, so I won’t rehash too much here. But it’s no secret that their elevated frenemy relationship brought something special to the series. More than just adversaries, but not hang out together friends, the way Magnum and Higgins cared for and about each other even while driving each other up ever available wall at Robin’s Nest brings a unique emotional aspect to the show that was allowed to develop over the course of the series. Maybe they wouldn’t win a traditional Best Couple contest, but they are definitely in a category of their own.
Morticia and Gomez Addams, The Addams Family–Could I have a favorite couple list without Morticia and Gomez? No. I could not. Because when it comes to romantic relationships, they are goals. Here are two people who love each other unabashedly, are passionate about and with each other, and foster a loving household on top of it all. As a couple, they’re unstoppable, above the petty squabbles and nagging of other “normal” couples. They’re a united front against the problems that face them and their family. And on the rare occasion that Morticia and Gomez do spat, their disagreement withers in the face of their love. You cannot tell me that bickering couples who barely tolerate each other are the ideal when Morticia and Gomez Addams exist.
Walter and Ryan, CSI: Miami–This show actually features several of my favorite couples (Delko and Speed, Ryan and Natalia, Calleigh and Delko in a purely platonic fashion, Horatio and Tripp), but Walter and Ryan were the first to pop into my head and for good reason. Walter has the ability to bring out the best in Ryan, which is great because Ryan has a tendency to be a prat. I love him, but sometimes I want to push him down in a mud puddle. He can be too serious, angsty, and stubborn. Walter lightens Ryan up considerably, usually by tormenting him (the floating hat is one of my faves). They’re a fun couple. But also a dedicated one. They have each other’s backs to such an extent that even a tornado couldn’t break them up. Okay, maybe physically, but the friendship emerged from the rubble stronger than ever.
Marty and Mr. Driscoll, Barney Miller–Given that these two gay characters existed in the ’70s/early 80s, it was never explicitly said if Marty and Mr. Driscoll were in a romantic relationship. It was kind of implied that they were, but Marty was also known to fall for other guys, so. Maybe they dated, but remained friends. Maybe they were friends with benefits. No matter the exact nature of their relationship, Marty and Mr. Driscoll go together like peanut butter and chocolate. A hilarious duo who can repel any of Wojo’s homophobia with a quick and witty barb, they added some rainbow charm to the 12th precinct when they stopped by. They did some heavy representation work back in the day and they did it in glorious fashion. Individually, they’re terrific (I’ve written about my love of Marty before), but as a couple, they’re dynamite.
Laverne and Shirley, Laverne and Shirley–It’s no secret that I love Lenny and Squiggy, but I wouldn’t have those two weirdos without Laverne and Shirley. Their friendship is amazing. They have two rather different personalities that both mesh and clash beautifully. These two are not above their squabbles, but they’re also each other’s biggest supporters. The hijinks can be wacky and the physical comedy hysterical, but what grounds the craziness is the emotional bond these two women share. They truly love and care about each other. Even at each other’s throats, there’s never a doubt that they’re going to kiss and make-up because the idea of one without the other doesn’t make sense. When it comes to best friends, this couple takes the cake. And probably throws it at Lenny and Squiggy.
These five favorite couples are a good start, but there are many more favorite couples to write about. And I will.