Why are so many TV shows centered around the patriarch of a family?

The Simpsons. King Of The Hill. Family Guy. American Dad. The Sopranos. Big Love. Now this new show Lucky Louie. And those are just the shows on TV now. Why is it so popular for TV shows to be centered around a father figure of a family? Is it just that it’s a real-life situation that makes an easy basis for drama/comedy? Or is there some deeper desire for people to feel connected to a patriarchal figure?

I imagine it’s nothing more than that’s how it’s always been done. Nowadays of course women typically lead more exciting lives than those of when TV first premiered, but the father being the main anchor of the family is something that we as a society are used to.

Do you mean patriarch as opposed to matriarch, or as a whole? Because there are plenty of TV shows that focus on the children with the parents as background characters.

Because we live in a patriarchal culture, and it provides an undercurrent for everything, ever.

Except for a couple Lucy efforts, Mary Tyler Moore, Phyllis, Maude, Mary Hartman Mary Hartman, Soap, One Day at a Time, several Ellen DeGeneres shows, Grace Under Fire, Roseanne, Murphy Brown, Golden Girls, lately Grey’s Anatomy, Commander in Chief, Gilmore Girls, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, etc. etc. etc. and so on.