Just as in the real world, fictional TV characters like to personalize their homes and offices with family photos, portraits and other mementos. Sometimes, these decorations fit directly into a sitcom’s storyline. Other times, they are quietly tucked into the background by clever writers in an effort to reward viewers for paying attention. Whatever the case, there have been plenty of hilarious “home décor” moments created by some of our favorite TV shows. Below are 22 of the funniest examples I could find.
Parks and Recreation
Ron Swanson has an affinity for two things: breakfast and dark-haired women. A combination of these two loves is perfectly depicted in the poster he proudly displays on his office wall. (source)
Pawnee, Indiana has a rich history, apparently. This history is displayed in mural form along the walls of Pioneer Hall. The above images are titled “The ‘Trial’ of Chief Wamapo” and “Sunday Boxing.” View a couple more murals at NBC.
It doesn’t matter how many times I see that framed photo of George Michael, it makes me laugh every time. Add in Tobias, and you’ve got yourself a true classic TV moment.
Apparently, Michael Scott is a very proud Seyko watch owner. (source)
This cute frightening baby poster was meant to help Angela get through her many crabby days at work. Unfortunately, all it really did was make Oscar crabby himself (who complained that the poster was “the opposite art” and in poor taste). (source)
The Simpsons is without a doubt one of the kings of background gags. Nelson’s sparsely decorated bedroom may not adhere to the classic rules of Feng Shui, but he certainly knows what he likes (i.e. blowing stuff up).
This one is a vintage Duff advertisement from the McCarthy era that Homer spotted while at the Duff Brewery. (source)
When Homer lies to Marge and tells her that he has to visit Lenny in the hospital due to an injury (“Not Lenny!”), she springs into action with this well-meaning cross-stitch.
Okay, this one’s more adorable than it is hilarious, but it’s still pretty freaking awesome. In case you don’t remember, Homer put up these pictures of Maggie at work to alter the original mantra installed by Mr. Burns – “Don’t Forget: You’re Here Forever.”
30 Rock has proven itself pretty prolific when it comes to background gags. This photo of fish and chips is proudly displayed in Liz Lemon’s office. Something tells me her and Ron Swanson would get along swimmingly. (source)
Tracy Jordan’s movie roles are a running gag on 30 Rock. One of his favorite roles appears to be Who Dat Ninja? – the poster is displayed in his dressing room. (source)
Here’s another Oscar-worthy movie poster from Tracy Jordan’s career. (source)
The Colbert Report
Every year, Stephen Colbert vows to add another layer of depth to this classy portrait that sits over his fake mantle. After its time on the show, the portrait above was first displayed outside a bathroom at the National Portrait Gallery in DC. Now, the image is part of the Smithsonian’s permanent collection of American Treasures. (source)
You’d think Stephen Colbert would be the only one narcissistic enough to proudly display a portrait of himself, right? Nope – Futurama’s Zapp Brannigan takes it one step further and moves his self-aggrandizing directly into the bedroom. (source)
Flight of the Conchords
The homeland of Jemaine, Bret and Murray (“Present”) is the butt of a slew of jokes in Flight of the Conchords. The country’s tourism motto doesn’t really help its case. (source)
Stalker/Fan Mel is way too eager to show her love for her favorite band. For obvious reasons, this hand-painted portrait of Jemaine quickly found its way into the trash pile. (source)
“The Human Being” is by far one of the worst school mascots of all time. (source)
Okay, I know this isn’t technically “wall art,” but this lone trophy in the Greendale Community College trophy case is hilarious enough to warrant mentioning. (source)
This poster for VD became a rather embarrassing resume bullet point for struggling New York actor, Joey. (source)
When George started working at Kruger Industrial Smoothing, this little photo bomb created more than a little trouble between him and his new boss.
Kruger: “Kruger: Actually, funny thing about this photo. We were at the beach and there was this dumb looking guy near by. When he went in for a swim, my sons and I took all his stuff and threw it in the ocean! What a pear-shaped loser.”
The Kramer. Is any sitcom painting more recognizable? This portrait was so popular, that NBC eventually replicated the painting into posters, which sold quite well (my friend had one up on his wall). The intrigue of the painting is best summed up by the old couple in the show that eventually bought it:
“His struggle is man’s struggle. He lifts my spirit.”
“He is a loathsome, offensive brute. Yet I can’t look away.”
“He transcends time and space.”
“He sickens me.”
“I love it.”
Did I miss your favorite? Put it in the comments and let me know.
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