The sisters of characters on TV shows come in all different forms. Some of them are really sweet and loving, whereas others can be mean and sassy and constantly make fun of their siblings. Some are bullies and some are kind. Some are spoilt brats who could do with being taken down a peg or two, while some just crave attention from the people around them. There have been some really great sister characters on the box in the hundred or so years since the invention of television, and we have hand picked the 10 that give us #FamilyGoals the most!
10. Ashley Banks
Ashley in The Fresh Prince of Bel Air – or “Ash,” as Will calls her, or “Miss Ashley,” as Geoffrey calls her – is a wonderful person. She is intelligent and kind and sweet and she’s totally harmless. She is approachable and easy to talk to. She was already a sister to Hilary and Carlton, and when their cousin Will came to live with them in Bel Air, she became a sister to him, too. She is arguably the kindest and sweetest and most lovable person in the Banks household. Ashley would be great to have as a sister. She is also a notable character now for the fact that she once met Donald Trump, the real estate mogul who would go on to become the controversial President of the United States. She memorably said to him, “I’ve got something to tell you…Thank you for ruining my life!” to which Trump replied, “Everybody’s always blaming me for everything.” In an odd case of life imitating art, the actress who played Ashley on the show, Tatyana Ali, has been outspoken against Trump’s policies in the couple of years since he took office. She is a prolific advocate of the “Families Belong Together” marches.
9. Dee Reynolds
Dennis Reynolds might treat his twin sister Dee like crap all the time, but she would actually be a really great sister to have. She is always up for a good time, she likes to hang out and drink beer, she is outspoken in all of her views (which would make conversations among the family interesting and heated), and she’s always available to listen – even though no one else bothers to ever listen to her. The role of Dee was originally written to be a female voice of reason in the show, but that all changed very quickly when Kaitlin Olson was cast, as the writers realized what strong comedic talents she had. This was the beginning of a revolution in comedy. Women no longer had to be relegated to the boring, naggy roles. They could get involved in the guys’ antics and get some of the biggest laughs on the show. It all started with Dee. Despite her commitments to other projects, Olson will be back to play Dee in the upcoming thirteenth season of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, which has recently been given a September premiere date, although her brother Dennis won’t be back, since he’s moved up to North Dakota to help to raise his illegitimate son, who he found out about in the season 12 finale episode.
8. Nancy Wheeler
Natalia Dyer has played the role of Nancy Wheeler, Mike Wheeler’s older sister, brilliantly for two seasons now (with a third currently in the making. After the first season premiered and became a huge hit, it didn’t take Dyer long to realize how much it had resonated with audiences: “I was very nervous as to how it would be received, but literally the first night that it came out, I got recognized on the street – I was living in New York at the time, so you’re on the street a lot. To see that amping up, people recognizing you everywhere, and just seeing face to face how people felt about the show and how much it meant to them – it was wild! When people approach me, it’s a vulnerable moment for everybody. You can see that sometimes people don’t quite know what to say to you, but they want to come up to you and you can tell they’re nervous, and it’s really humbling and endearing. Generally, the message is just appreciation – people saying how much they love the show. It’s wild and hard to wrap your mind around, but it’s always been positive feedback, so it’s the most you could hope for!”
7. Meadow Soprano
Tony and Carmela Soprano’s daughter Meadow – or “Princess Bing,” as the FBI investigators like to call her – has an interesting relationship with her little brother A.J. She basically goes through adolescence and all the problems that go along with it, and then imparts the knowledge that she has learned from coming of age onto him. It is Meadow who breaks the news to A.J. that their father is not in waste management and is in fact an infamous New Jersey gangster. As a high school student, Meadow was a strong role model for her younger brother to follow in the footsteps of. She was on the girls’ soccer team and took part in school pageants and sang in the chorus line. Her high school grades were good enough to get her into the coveted Columbia University. When she goes off to college, Meadow falls into drug and alcohol abuse and a deep depression. She starts to get her own independent ideas about politics and education and love and money, and passes that on to her brother. A.J. ends up following in Meadow’s footsteps as the series goes on, so it’s a good thing that she was there to guide him and protect him (to an extent).
6. Claire Dunphy
Everybody loves Claire Dunphy. What a wonderfully enjoyable character. She is a great mother to her three kids: Haley, Alex, and Luke. She is a great wife to her husband, Phil. And she is a great sister to her brother, Mitchell. She’s always there to listen when he has a problem and she’ll do anything that she can to help him overcome it. When Mitchell’s parents wouldn’t accept him as a gay man, Claire would. Julie Bowen has always been fantastic in the role of Claire, too. The writers wrote a terrific character – a terrific mother, a terrific wife, a terrific sister – but it was Bowen who really brought her to life on the screen. She has won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series and a boatload of other awards. Ken Tucker of Entertainment Weekly has singled out Bowen in particular for praise: “Bowen’s Claire could have been a blank blonde cipher. Far from it: Bowen’s wide array of silent gazes at the camera, her slow burns at her clan’s bad behavior, and her ability to freak out without seeming nutso crazy makes her an essential, standout part of TV’s best freshman ensemble cast.”
5. Sansa Stark
Following the first season of Game of Thrones, which ended with their father getting executed by having his head lopped off, the Stark kids haven’t really spent all that much time with one another. They all went their separate ways and got off on their own adventures elsewhere. Arya has paired up with the Hound and learned how to kill her enemies and then taken them on one by one. Bran has gone off and figured out his ability to get into the mind of a direwolf. They haven’t spent much time together. But Sansa came back and teamed up with her half brother Jon Snow. In season 6, they reunited when they both needed someone that they could rely on. Jon had been betrayed by his own men and killed by them, and then resurrected to find that they all still hated him. And Sansa had run away from the husband that had raped her, Ramsay Bolton. They both had a common enemy in the form of Ramsay, who liked to feed back to his dogs, including, in one gruesome case, a baby. In “Battle of the Bastards,” which is possibly the greatest episode of the entire show, they combined forces to defeat Ramsay’s army and then feed him to his own dogs. You have to share a pretty fantastic brother and sister bond for that to happen.
4. Erica Sinclair
Lucas’ sassy sister in Stranger Things was not initially supposed to be a large role. She was introduced in the second season as someone who would happily make fun of her older brother and his nerdy friends, much to the delight of the audience. The child actor who plays the role of Erica Sinclair, Priah Ferguson, is just eleven years old, and she’s very pleased with the positive response to her character. She told Entertainment Weekly, “I can’t believe it. I knew people would be excited, but I didn’t think it would be like this.” Ferguson does not hold anywhere near as much animosity towards actor Caleb McLaughlin as her character does towards his. In fact, she has adorably described her co-star as an “amazing gentleman.” After making Erica a shining star with her pitch perfect delivery of lines like, “You are such a nerd,” the producers have decided to promote Ferguson to a series regular, so we’ll be seeing a lot more of her in the upcoming third season of the show. As for what her character will get up to, Ferguson has some ideas: “It would be cool if I were back, and maybe also get into fighting the demogorgons, because my response from when I was looking through Lucas’ room for He-Man, I think is a little clue that Erica may be sneaky and may find something from the demogorgon.”
3. Monica Geller
Monica Geller is one of the most iconic and legendary characters in the history of television. She broke new ground for what could and could not be discussed on primetime television – she would talk about having safe sex and enjoying a casual sex life and having a boyfriend who was a lot older than her. Monica has a difficult relationship with her parents. Her mother’s constant criticisms and meanness are what gave her low self esteem and a persistent need to please people. But she goes have a great relationship with her brother. How many people can you name who count their brother or sister among their group of best friends? Monica has always been supportive of Ross in his pursuit of Rachel and in his career troubles and raising his kids. She’s so close to her brother that she ended up marrying his best friend. It has been said that Ross has the most Jewish identity out of the two siblings. Television’s Changing Image of American Jews said that “the smart, funny, and insecure Ross seems more Jewish” than his sister Monica. But aside from all that, they are a great pair of siblings. Just look at the routine!
2. Debra Morgan
It’s tough to love your family unconditionally. It can be hard to let your parents and your brothers and your sisters get away with certain things or look past certain things and continue to love them. For Debra Morgan, this is particularly difficult – because her brother is a serial killer. But he is a serial killer who kills other serial killers serially, so he’s not the worst kind of serial killer. But then the phrase “the best kind of serial killer” doesn’t sound too awesome. And it was even worse for Debra, but guess what – she’s a cop! And a good one at that. It helps that she remained unaware of it for a long time, but even when she did find out that her own brother was the Bay Harbor Butcher, the notorious serial killer that had been tormenting Miami for years, right under her and her colleagues’ noses, she resisted the urge to turn him in. Instead, she dedicated herself to helping him kick it. She wanted to get him to stop murdering people, which was never going to happen, but at least she tried. The only thing that lets down Debra as a sister is the fact that she’s in love with her brother. Don’t worry, he’s adopted. But still, pretty weird.
1. Lisa Simpson
The Simpson family is simply America’s favorite family. There are no two ways about it. They’re so beloved that they have their own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. They’re fictional! There are some living screen legends who haven’t been given a star, so for a fictional family to get one is some feat. At the heart of the Simpson family is Homer and Marge’s relationship, but Bart and Lisa’s is close behind. Sure, Bart and Lisa might fight a lot, but what siblings don’t? What’s really important is the moments like when all she wanted as a baby was to be Bart’s friend and all those montage clips from the end of “Lisa on Ice” when they realize how much they love each other. Lisa is smart and sweet and outspoken and she is always there to help and she always wants to do the right thing. She will always listen to you and talk to you about your problems. Just look at how great she was when Bart was being tormented by Jessica Lovejoy – she stuck by his side and helped him out and ended up saving him. TV Guide magazine gave Lisa the number 11 spot on their list of the Top 50 Greatest Cartoon Characters of All Time, tied with her brother Bart.