I had never seen it before, but when I discovered that the twinsational 90’s sitcom was available on Netflix, I figured it could be a reasonably wholesome option for my daughter and a somewhat bearable one for me. Cut to two months and approximately 60 hours of my life later and while it’s true that I could’ve used that time to earn an orange belt in TaeKwon-Do, learn to play some chords on the guitar or read War and Peace cover to cover, all was not lost. Here are some of the things I learned …
1. Jackeé Harry is a national fucking treasure. The woman has impeccable comedic timing and is criminally underrated.
2. Those girls can seriously rock a beret—I dare anyone to find a hatless episode in the first three seasons and rightfully so.
3. White people are utter buffoons. Pretty much every white friend on the show was a full-blown (but lovable!) moron.
4. Don’t be fooled by the corduroyed, full-grown Urkel-like exterior—Tim Reid and Jackeé Harry had explosive, mind-blowing sexual chemistry. It was almost uncomfortable to watch.
5. I now know what Gabrielle Union, Taraji P. Henson, RuPaul (and a cavalcade of other celebrities) looked like in the mid-90’s. You’d be shocked by the number of now-famous actors who honed their craft playing second fiddle to the Sisters. It was practically a master class—once you’ve perfected the old twin switcheroo, everything else is a cakewalk.
6. How to produce a television show on a budget. They mystifyingly managed to shoot six seasons of television, basically using two sets!
7. Roger (the pesky kid next door) was a grade-A sexual miscreant. The running gag of his creepy innuendos, double entendres and persistent voyeurism/stalking was considered wacky and adorable back then, but would get him and the show canceled in a heartbeat by today’s standards.
8. Theirs is officially the most maddening, earwormiest theme song in television history. It’s been three weeks since I watched the series finale and it still plagues me daily. It’s the “I Saw the Sign” of theme songs.
9. The difference between Tia and Tamera. It took me until Season 6, but I finally nailed it. Tia is the ever so slightly taller one. Or was that Tamera?? Damn it!
10. I am old as hell. Have you Googled them lately? Well, I have and the twins are now middle aged mothers. Where did all the time go? Oh, that’s right …. I spent it watching Sister, Sister.
Bonus: F Mary-Kate and Ashley. Tia and Tamera are the far better (and infinitely less irksome) set of twins. ❏
Lisa is a pacifist whose last piece for WryTimes was Haikus on Partial Masking.