I think it’s obvious that most characters on TV hold down jobs that are anointed as Jobs For TV Characters - that is, the list of jobs that television screenwriters think make up the entire workforce. I would say that there are approximately twelve basic jobs that TV writers think exist in the entire universe:
- Lawyers and judges
- Cops and/or private investigators
- Actors, comedians, newscasters, or other TV/radio/movie jobs
- Writers, models, photographers, or other print media jobs
- Firefighters and paramedics
- Soldiers, spies, and secret agents
- Doctors and nurses
- Fashion industry people
- Artsy, media or faddish psuedo-jobs like painting or owning a bookstore, crap like that
- The domestic servants of people in jobs 1-11
Now, there have been a few TV series in which the central theme of the show is some other sort of job. “Taxi,” for instance, or “Wings.” “Newhart” was about a guy who owned a hotel.
My question is: what examples can we think of of characters who did normal, common jobs that weren’t a part of the show? I can think of a few, but not many. I can think of hardly ANYONE who works in a manufacturing facility of some sort, despite the fact that that’s actually where most people work, at least on this continent. The few I thought of:
- Archie Bunker worked at the docks
- The guy in “King of Queens” is a postal worker
Who else has there been?