Alex P. Keaton
He was the lone conservative voice in a family of tree-huggers… a staunch supporter of supply-side economics, with an 8 x 10 of Nixon on his bedroom wall. He loved Princeton, Wall $treet Week, and Ronald Reagan.
Alex P. Keaton was an idol to preppies, a poster boy for right-wing America, and even, yes, a pin-up for the Tiger Beat generation. From the opening scene of the Family Ties pilot, when he sauntered into the kitchen toting a briefcase and wearing a sweater vest, we could tell there was something different about this guy. It’s not often you can run into someone who tries to teach a preschool that taxes are a “terrible, hairy, liberal monster” and find them endearing.
Over the course of seven seasons, Alex P. Keaton would get hopped up on speed to survive term paper hell, get out-IQed by his idiot sister Mallory, and even get smacked by his drunk Uncle Ned (remember Tom Hanks in that role?) Eventually, though, young Mr. Keaton would persevere and land his dream job on (where else) Wall Street.
When the show was first pitched, parents Steven and Elyse were to be the focus, but Alex instantly became a fan favorite, so Family Ties was re-tooled. And Michael J. Fox would go on to earn four Emmy nominations (including three straight wins) and secure his status as viable Hollywood star. (Hellooo! McFly!)
Alex P. Keaton may not have gotten into his beloved Princeton (thanks to Mallory’s meltdown during his admission interview), but he’s still one of the smartest and most awesome characters in television history.
We ♥ Alex P. Keaton.