Sometimes the humble sofa is more than just an insignificant piece of furniture, sometimes it is the staging area for a truly unforgettable TV moment, as these examples show.
1. Tom Cruise on The Oprah Winfrey Show, 2005
When viewers tuned in to watch Tom Cruise on The Oprah Winfrey Show in 2005, none could have anticipated his overzealous reaction to questions regarding his new girlfriend Katie Holmes – cue Cruise jumping up and down like a sugar-loaded child on Oprah’s sofa while declaring his undying love for Katie. A truly cringeworthy moment for all watching, and one we wish we could forget.
2. Creature Comforts Heat Electric advert, 1989
There are few adverts that people actually go out of their way to see, but the Heat Electric ads were an exception. Some would even have VCRs ready to record, just so they could have the full collection of Nick Park & co’s claymation works. While all the Creature Comforts ads are classics, the ‘cat’ wife who sits on a sofa and talks lovingly about her central heating whilst her ‘dog’ husband sits listening nonchalantly is one that sticks in the memory.
3. Seinfeld, ‘The Couch’, Season 6 Episode 5 (1994)
As is usual in Larry David’s writing, the story centres around a controversial topic and uses an allegory to explore – and send up – an issue. In this episode of Seinfeld, Jerry brings up abortion in a restaurant and in so doing, ends up having to give up his dream sofa after the owner of the restaurant urinates on it in revenge.
4. Mr. Bean, ‘Do-It-Yourself Mr Bean’, Episode 10 (1994)
It’s that classic dilemma: you’ve bought lots of home decorating equipment and now you need to find a way of fitting the stuff into the car to take it all home. How to do it? Mr Bean finds a novel solution by strapping an armchair to the top of the car and using a system of pulleys for steering. Ridiculous, but entertaining.
5. Frasier, ‘Three Valentines’, season 6 episode 14 (1999)
Frasier at its finest as all of Dr Niles Crane’s neuroses are displayed in five minutes of physical comedy gold. The scene starts with Niles desperately attempting to iron a wrinkle off his trousers, and slowly descends into him almost setting fire to Frasier’s entire living room. An hilarious TV sofa moment that will live through the ages.
6. Sherlock, ‘A Scandal in Belgravia’, season 1 episode 1 (2012)
Irene Adler (played by Lara Pulver) greets Holmes in the nude in order to throw off his powers of deduction, and in the process of Holmes’ questioning sits around rather seductively on some very plush furnishings. Of course, as the show was aired pre-watershed, the viewer does not see anything too revealing due to the brilliant camera work and editing.
7. The Simpsons, ‘Evolution of Homer’ Couch Gag, Season 18 Episode 16 (2007)
Over the years, The Simpsons couch gag has become more complex. There are plenty of classics to choose from, but Homer’s evolution is perhaps the most memorable thanks to its epic time scale of one minute ten seconds, brilliant musical score, Moe’s ‘backwards’ evolution and Marge’s classic line, “what took you so long?”.