Greek Tragedy: The True Paternity of the Girls on Full House

John Stamos is Greek. He’s really Greek. As in he’s really into being Greek, and he plays Greek roles, and he promotes Greek products. John Stamos is so Greek (How Greek is he!?), he’s so Greek that he had the producers of Full House change the character of Uncle Jesse from Jesse Cochran to Jesse Katsopolis. Now I have no problem with Greek pride or Jesse being Greek—the world keeps spinning, the Rippers keep ripping—my problem is are we seriously supposed to believe that those three little blonde girls are half Greek?

Girls on Full House

D.J., Stephanie, and Michelle are three very blonde and very blue-eyed girls. It is, of course, possible to be blond and Greek, but three of them!? That’s highly unlikely. As a pop cultural scientist and amateur sleuth (and an honorary member of the Mary-Kate & Ashley Adventure Squad), I’ve found that recessive genes like light hair and eyes are much harder to pass down to the next generation. For every trait we have—be it blond hair, blue eyes, or general Greekitude—we inherit a gene from both our mother and father with one being a dominate gene and one being a recessive. So, you need two recessive pairings to create blond hair and blue eyes. For more information on hereditary traits, please, consult your local library. I’ll wait.

What this all means though is that it would be difficult to pass on light hair and blue eyes in a very dark hair, brown eyes Greek culture. However, their mother, Pam (Christie Houser), was shown to be blonde on, at least, one very special episode. So, she would have inherited two recessive blond genes and two recessive blue-eyed genes from her parents (who were depicted as stereotypically Greek), and while I said before it is unlikely to happen in Greeks, it is still possible. About a 1 in 16 chance at best. Now the greatest way for Pam to pass on blonde hair and blue eyes to her girls would be to mate with someone who also has those same recessive genes. Since, Bob Saget’s Danny Tanner (and I guess to a larger extent Bob Saget himself) has brown hair and brown eyes; the best they could possibly do to have a child with both blue eyes and blond hair is 1 in 4. This means while he himself has the dominant brown hair genes, he does possess the blond genes within.

The following chart should help demonstrate this. Dominant genes are shown by a capital letter. Recessive genes are lowercase of the same letter.

Pam & Danny Mix

  Danny Tanner
Pam Tanner

HE He hE he
he HhEe Hhee hhEe hhee
he HhEe Hhee hhEe hhee
he HhEe Hhee hhEe hhee
he HhEe Hhee hhEe hhee

(H) stands for dark hair, (h) for blond hair. (E) stands brown eyes, (e) for blue eyes.

So, the odds of D.J., Stephanie, and Michelle all being blonde with blue eyes are not good. (And for any geneticists reading this, bare with me OK, I said I’m an amateur sleuth) If Pam wanted a brood of mini-mes, she would want to mate with something else also with blond hair and blue eyes. Who in her circle of friends possess those qualities? Who in the world fits that description? Oh, someone like Joey Gladstone perhaps.

Pam & Joey Mix

  Joey Gladstone
Pam Tanner

he he
he hhee hhee
he hhee hhee

Dave Coulier Fathered the Girls on Full House

This starts to explain something about Full House like why Joey stuck around all those years. At some point you’d think he'd want to sleep in a regular bedroom or bring a girl home. Or own property. Helping out his widowed friend is one thing, but devoting his life to a family that wasn’t his is another. Or was it? After seeing blonde baby after blonde baby being born, he probably knew what was up. This is why he lived with them for so many years; it was so he could be close to these girls who he knew to be his illegitimate daughters.

The Full House theme song offers several clues when seen from Joey’s point of view:

Whatever happened to predictability?
The milkman, the paperboy, and evening T.V

Who’s the father of these children? The milkman? The paperboy? A TV news anchor? (Remember: Danny Tanner was a news anchor)

Everywhere you look (everywhere)
There's a face of somebody who needs you.

Everywhere you look there’s a face of someone who may or may not be your biological daughter.

When you're lost out there and you're all alone
A light is waiting to carry you home

Joey may be alone, but his biological daughters are the light, and while they can never know that he’s their real father, he can still make a home with them.

Ahh Ahh Ahh Ahh Chity Chi bob botta

Shhhh... don't tell Bob Saget.

Let’s not overlook Joey Gladstone’s/Dave Coulier’s sex appeal. Remember he is the man that rocked Alanis Morissette’s world. She wrote like 3000 hit songs about the passion that is Dave Coulier. She had a fever and the only cure was more Dave Coulier. Let us never forget that Ryan Reynolds dumped her, too, but I don’t remember any hit songs about that. Dave Coulier > Ryan Reynolds.

Other reasons the Ladies Love Coulier:

  • Sense of humor is the #1 trait girls pretend to want in man.
  • Blond mullet is the actual #1 trait girls want in a man.
  • Woodchucks are the sexiest of woodland creatures. Just try not to think about either wood or Chuck Norris.
  • “Cut. It. Out.” means “let’s cut the small talk and go back to my place” in sign language.
  • Hockey players are the most fertile of athletes because the ice creates optimum temperatures for sperm production.
  • Popeye imitations are very appealing to women because he’s a sailor and the ladies like a man in uniform. And he eats a lot of spinach, also known as nature’s Viagra.

And let’s not forget…

Uncle Jesse’s kids were also Blond!

John Stamos’s Uncle Jesse character, as mentioned before, is super Greek. Dark black mullet… all the works. His wife, Becky (Lori Loughlin), is a brunette. There is almost no way they were producing little blond twin boys. Unless, of course, Joey got there first (and by “there” I mean her womb). In fact, I suspect Kimmy Gibbler is also his child. Also, their dog, Comet. As well as the kids on Home Improvement, Minkus, and Zack & Cody. It’s pretty safe to say Dave Coulier spread his seed all over the sitcom universe.

  • Lena
    Comment from: Lena
    09/09/11 @ 09:52:17 am

    Well.. Actually Alanis Morissette wrote a number of songs after she split with Reynolds, among which ‘Torch’, apart from having had a massive nervous breakdown. These songs are collected in ‘Flavours of Entanglement’.

  • Jonna
    Comment from: Jonna
    09/09/11 @ 01:18:33 pm

    I love this post. You are SO right in every way. I almost died laughing when I read:

    Ahh Ahh Ahh Ahh Chity Chi bob botta
    Shhhh… don’t tell Bob Saget.

    Way to go!

  • Jessica
    Comment from: Jessica
    09/09/11 @ 01:29:27 pm

    Best post ever.

    Not only have you refreshed my memories of 9th grade Science class, but you have revealed to me an important truth about my least favorite Tanner household guest. It all makes so much sense.

    Don’t ever let anyone tell you your time could be spent more wisely.

  • BusyZombieLord
    Comment from: BusyZombieLord
    09/09/11 @ 03:27:48 pm

    Wow! That brilliant! I have not laughed that hard in a while.

  • birah
    Comment from: birah
    09/10/11 @ 04:18:49 pm

    holy. shit. this is incredibly hilarious. thank you. it’s good to laugh again.

  • TR Cunningham
    Comment from: TR Cunningham
    09/11/11 @ 12:45:40 pm

    A flaw in your logic is the episode 4x01 “Greek Week” when relatives from Greece come to visit. It’s a small part of the episode but one of the relatives is Melina, played by Mary Kate Olson. Are you suggesting that Joey also fathered the little Greek girl?

    Also, as to Pam’s blondness? Maybe she’s adopted and ethnically, but not genetically, Greek.

  • Jim
    Comment from: Jim
    09/12/11 @ 07:25:40 am

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAA this is genius!

  • Comment from: Wolf
    09/12/11 @ 09:57:49 am

    @TR Cunningham

    If memory serves (and it usually doesn’t), Michelle’s Greek cousin had black hair (whichever Olsen in a wig). Joey fathered only the blond children of TV Land. However, this does demonstrate that a father with a blond gene would be need to create Michelle.

    And an identical Greek twin also suggests that Pam was not adopted (because that twin was from her side of the family). Unless, of course, Pam was adopted and Jesse fathered the girls (which opens up a whole other can of worms I’d rather not think about).

  • Greg
    Comment from: Greg
    09/27/11 @ 05:53:35 pm

    This was hilarious - I agree - Joey was the father - there aint no way dark eyed, dark haired Jesse fathered those kids. There are some generalized inaccuracies you made about the genetic makeup of the Greek populace: A significant amount of Greeks, mainly from northern Greece, have light colored eyes, although most have dark hair. I used to date a Greek girl with strawberry blond hair and blue eyes (she was from Thessaloniki, in the north)

  • Wow
    Comment from: Wow
    11/21/11 @ 09:29:20 am

    Major flaw in all of this. I get that you’re saying that because Jesse was supposedly Greek, it would insinuate that Danny was Greek..


    There is never any confirmation that Uncle Jesse is actually Danny’s blood brother.

    In real life, many people will call men they are close to “brother". I had many “uncles” when I was a kid, none of them are blood.

    Since there is never any confirmation that Danny and Jesse are brother’s, this entire post is flawed.

  • Comment from: Wolf
    11/21/11 @ 09:50:47 am

    I’m not sure if this wasn’t made clear in the article (and for that I apologize), but it was certainly made clear on the run of Full House: Danny was married to Jesse’s sister. The were BROTHER-IN-LAWS and not brothers.

    Jesse and Danny’s wife were brother and sister, while technically there is a chance that one of them was adopted, it was explicitly stated they were brother and sister (as in the were both raised by the same mother and father, who they both recognized as their parents), and not just close friends.

  • Boobah
    Comment from: Boobah
    11/26/11 @ 06:01:39 pm

    Maybe Danny just always dyed his hair because he got tired of hearing blond jokes?

  • Joe
    Comment from: Joe
    01/01/12 @ 12:08:58 pm

    There ARE some blond greeks and even more that have blue eyes but still the dark hair. In fact…John Stamos has blue-gray eyes himself.

  • wildsoda
    Comment from: wildsoda
    01/15/12 @ 08:15:40 am

    Can you not see the truth? The seed is strong! They’re not Coulier’s kids…they’re LANNISTERS.

  • Mafredd
    Comment from: Mafredd
    01/22/12 @ 01:38:01 am

    Get a life weirdo.

  • lenig
    Comment from: lenig
    03/19/12 @ 06:46:53 pm

    you are saying that all greeks have to be dark with dark eyes? are we all short as well? would you like me to wave my hands in your face as i speak to you?? FYI i have 2 aunties in greece who are both blonde and blue eyed and add to that i come from a family of tall greeks (most of the guys are 6 ft tall and over) and this whole post is just ridiculous… my husband and i both have dark eyes and one of our daughters has blue eyes - we carry the gene on both sides … i’m with wildsoda - maybe they are lannisters?

  • BigRed6761
    Comment from: BigRed6761
    06/08/12 @ 11:54:03 am

    While basic genetics can point in this direction, my family is living proof that this kind of speculation is not always right. My mother has brown hair. My father had brown hair. They had 4 children. The three boys? All redheads. My sister? Blonde. And there’s absolutely no dispute that we’re all my father’s children. Every Pediatrician/OB/GYN that were involved in our births said something along the lines of “If they hadn’t come out of you Ma’am, I wouldn’t have thought you had anything to do with these babies…” Yeah we all look like my dad (blood tests also prove this. ;D )

  • CandieLu
    Comment from: CandieLu
    07/25/12 @ 11:28:36 am

    This article is hilarious, I must admit that. It’s a tv show, so we can all suspend as much reality as we’d like. But I should mention… sure the odds were against the blonde hair blue eyed kids, but like you wrote it wasn’t impossible. I have DARK brown eyes and brown hair. So do both of my biological parents, as well as both of my siblings. My husband was blonde as a kid, but his hair turned brown as he got older. He has blue eyes. Both of our kids have blonde hair and blue eyes. It’s all just playing the odds. So while it looks weird that DJ, Stephanie, and Michelle were blonde/blue - it can happen. Same thing for the boy twins - Aunt Becky could have had lighter hair as a child that turned darker as she aged, paired with the recessive genes in the Katsopolis family. Or not. But it was super weird for Joey to live there for so long…

  • Rae
    Comment from: Rae
    07/25/12 @ 11:59:29 am

    This post was quite funny, but I have to disagree. My mother is Greek/cyprian. Her father was so dark skinned that when he came to the US the citizenship people originally thought he was black. My mother married my father, who is half Irish, half Italian. They, obviously, had me. I am blonde, blueish/grey eyes and tooooooo pale. I burn, and don’t tan. I am half (1/3?) Greek. So it is completely possible that the girls of Full House are also Greek :)

  • Kelsey @ Crappy Kid Art
    Comment from: Kelsey @ Crappy Kid Art
    07/25/12 @ 12:24:07 pm

    Amazing display of journalism. I have always been annoyed by Joey, but now I just realize my subconscious was trying to protect me from his sexy ways.

  • Screamer
    Comment from: Screamer
    07/26/12 @ 06:22:25 am

    Wasn’t Danny’s mother blond?

  • Amanda
    Comment from: Amanda
    07/26/12 @ 01:21:15 pm

    My boyfriend’s half-Greek… blonde hair and blue eyes.

  • Joanna
    Comment from: Joanna
    07/27/12 @ 08:13:55 am

    There IS a hole in your theory. Jesse’s mom was first played by the lady who played Tony’s old neighbor on “Who’s the Boss” before she was replaced by Yvonne Wilder. In those episodes on, it was always mentioned his mom was ITALIAN.

  • adam
    Comment from: adam
    07/27/12 @ 09:56:27 am

    Funny enough, but Jesse and Danny weren’t blood brothers.

  • Lana
    Comment from: Lana
    07/27/12 @ 02:37:34 pm

    Who could blame her. Danny or Joey - I know who I would pick!

  • dianap
    Comment from: dianap
    07/30/12 @ 08:31:23 am

    too funny….who’d thought the riddle solved in the lyrics…..of course!

  • Amy
    Comment from: Amy
    09/18/12 @ 03:53:35 pm

    Hmm, funny and entertaining but in reality very flawed. My husband and I both have dark eyes and dark hair and we had 2 boys with blonde hair and blue eyes–and yes, they are his without a doubt!– I would imagine with them having a mother with blonde hair and blue eyes it would be common for them to all take after their mother.

  • Nicky
    Comment from: Nicky
    12/27/12 @ 07:50:09 pm

    This whole thing is flawed. There was a comment that Pam was adopted, she couldve been. But the girls are Dannys because if you remember his little sister is blonde. So it’s possible those traits from him moved on from a blond gene and Pam also being blond. So this proves false. And Jesseys twins are blond, it’s possible that Rebecca was blond as a little girl and as she grew up her hair got darker. Like my cousins son. He’s blond but my cousin and her husband are brunette. But her husband was blond when he was younger. Though this would make a great episode it’s false, false, false.

  • Nichole
    Comment from: Nichole
    01/21/13 @ 04:32:51 pm

    That was freaking HILARIOUS!!!!

  • Cee
    Comment from: Cee
    02/08/13 @ 08:26:28 am

    Awesome post. (I came here after googling “blonde Greek” because my blonde Greek-American roommate and I were discussing why Helen of Troy/Sparta was blonde–I told her she’s described as fair and blonde in the original Homer.) BTW Michelle looks redheaded in that picture–even her eyebrows and lashes are red! The Olsen twins must’ve gone blonde as they got older (not uncommon for babies’ hair to change color.)

    Kind of sad that the girls didn’t ever seem to get much exposure to their Greek heritage :( Jesse really should’ve been on the ball there!

    Love the Lannister comment!

  • Rachel
    Comment from: Rachel
    07/17/13 @ 06:14:06 pm

    Ha ha, love it. To be fair though, I am 1/4 Native American. My mother has dark hair and so does my father. My mother has brown eyes and my father’s are blue. I have dark hair and grey green eyes. Not that shocking. Both of my sons, however, have blonde hair and blue eyes. I KNOW they came from me. It hurt, hard to forget ;-)

  • kat
    Comment from: kat
    07/18/13 @ 11:28:35 am

    For what it’s worth me and my 2 cousins one from my mother’s and one from my father’s side are blonde with blue eyes and all our parents have brown hair/brown eyes except from one uncle with blue eyes… and we are greek…

  • Blayke
    Comment from: Blayke
    07/25/13 @ 11:38:24 am

    comet??? what the heck? comet is a golden retriever.

  • Curbycat
    Comment from: Curbycat
    07/26/13 @ 06:31:29 pm

    The genetics are possible. My mom is dark eye dark hair Italian, both parents brown eye, dark brown hair. Dad is also brown eyes brown hair and his parents too. But three of five of us have blond/light brown hair and blue eyes! And we are definitely their kids because we inherited moms blood disorder and dads colorblind ness. (Also we look alike)!!!!
    Also, I’m pretty sure Dave C. Has no man parts. No proof of course- just a rumor I am starting.

  • tfam
    Comment from: tfam
    10/29/13 @ 11:35:30 am

    Your site is so interesting and amusing- its great! Although your theory or reason behind the blond hairs children and Greeks isn’t so true. Historically Greek have blond hair and light eyes….over years of invasions and wars…mixing with Turkish people etc. Did it become more common to see dark hair Greeks. But many Greeks to still have light eyes and blond hair. (I am also Greek)
    Again, love your site & I don’t mean to be rude…it just is what it is.

  • Howdier
    Comment from: Howdier
    01/08/14 @ 05:41:54 pm

    I am amused by the people saying “Are you saying Greeks can’t have light hair or eyes???” Nope. And the author addresses that in this article. L2R. :)

  • Melinda
    Comment from: Melinda
    02/05/14 @ 02:29:29 pm

    You have WAY too much time on your hands.

  • Jessi
    Comment from: Jessi
    02/05/14 @ 10:26:28 pm

    Good lord, some people have no sense of humor. This article was meant as a joke, not to be taken seriously. Lighten up people.

  • SmoothkahkSr
    Comment from: SmoothkahkSr
    02/06/14 @ 07:23:40 am

    This article blew my entire mind. And for those of you who are searching for flaws in this flawless piece of work, Jesse is Danny’s Brother-in-law. Danny isn’t Greek, his wife is.

  • Elena
    Comment from: Elena
    02/06/14 @ 01:52:07 pm

    Pam’s parents were not both Greek..her mom was Italian. It’s in quite a few episodes of the first 2 series. By the way, I am Greek, from Crete. There are many blond and blue-eyed people on our island. And it is believed that that was the colouring of most not long ago.

  • Meelur
    Comment from: Meelur
    02/06/14 @ 07:30:16 pm

    this is brilliant and the comments just knock it out of the park

  • Enrico
    Comment from: Enrico
    08/10/14 @ 07:12:07 pm

    i think michelle is really jesse’s daughter and that he had her when he was too young to raise her. After giving her away to be raised by Pam and Danny, Pam passes away. Jesse so distraught about Pam’s death an wanting to be around his daughter he moves in. Since he gave her away at such a young age he would never reveal that to her but he stays around that way he can hang around his daughter all the time.

  • Lyndsey
    Comment from: Lyndsey
    09/02/14 @ 03:32:09 pm

    He must father the children on Everybody Loves Raymond, too! hahaha!

  • Modern
    Comment from: Modern
    11/02/14 @ 07:23:10 pm

    Oh my God what a man whore. And also Comet. Wow he did it with a dog, and Zack and Cody look awfully familiar to Jessies Sons. Maybe, Joey is Kimmys dad. I mean why in the world would they hang out as neighbors so long.

  • nancy drew
    Comment from: nancy drew
    03/23/15 @ 12:03:00 am

    chrisitne houser, the actress who is the mother of the girls, has her character’s name listed as “pam katsopolis tanner” on imdb

  • Bridget
    Comment from: Bridget
    07/14/15 @ 08:00:59 am

    I agree Joey is the father of the 5 kids and no one can convince me otherwise! I see his facial features in DJ the most and Stephanie and Michelle a little bit. Nicky and Alex look like him too and in one episode one of the twins said, “I ate dirt!". Joey admitted to having pica that made him eat dirt once. The twin must have inherited this pica from Joey his bio dad. As for DJ, the letters DJ stand for Donna Jo and she is named after her bio dad Joey a little bit!