This post is dedicated to my favorite siblings, Dianne and Barbara.
Happy National Siblings Day, y’all! In honor of the occasion, here is a selection of iconic pop culture siblings and, as always, a few of my favorites.
- The March sisters – Little Women
We’re on a first name basis with the March girls: Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy. From the beloved 1868 Louisa May Alcott novel to the numerous adaptations, including three Oscar-winning feature films, generations have grown up with the sisters.
- Monica and Ross Geller – Friends
The relationship between the Geller siblings provided Friends with some of its funniest moments, but at its core, their relationship was built on mutual love and respect – and the occasional sibling rivalry.
Fun fact: Monica is Ross’s younger sister but in real life, Courteney Cox is two years older than David Schwimmer.
- Lindsay and Sam Weir – Freaks and Geeks
In a refreshingly candid series like Freaks and Geeks, it’s no surprise to find a sibling pair as heartwarming and hilarious as Lindsay and Sam Weir. I’ve professed my undying love for this lovely little one-season wonder before – and I’ll do it again. If you’ve never seen this gem of a show, do yourself a favor and check it out (you can stream it on Hulu and Paramount Plus).
- The Bennet sisters – Pride and Prejudice
Another set of iconic pop culture sisters – Jane, Elizabeth, Mary, Kitty, and Lydia Bennet – made their first appearance in Jane Austen’s 1813 literary classic. Notable adaptions include a 1995 BBC production and the beloved 2005 film version for which Keira Knightley received a Best Actress Oscar nomination.
Fun fact: Bridget Jones’s Diary is one of many loose adaptations of Pride and Prejudice. Colin Firth, who played Mr. Darcy in the 1995 BBC miniseries, also portrayed Mark Darcy in the Bridget Jones trilogy.
- Lucas and Erica Sinclair – Stranger Things
On a series full of sibling pairs – Mike and Nancy Wheeler, Will and Jonathan Byers, creators Ross and Matt Duffer – the one that stands out for me is Lucas and Erica Sinclair. Sarcastic and whip smart, Erica is her big brother’s nemesis early on, until the gang recruits her for D & D and, later, monster hunting.
- Elliott, Michael, and Gertie – E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
The magic of E.T. isn’t just the special effects; it’s the combination of writing, directing, casting, and acting that gave us one of the most believable families in cinema history. The three siblings share an awfully big secret – there’s an alien living in their bedroom closet – but their relationship is grounded in relatable sibling dynamics.
Fun fact: Among the actresses who auditioned for the role of Gertie were Juliette Lewis and Sarah Michelle Gellar. I love them both, but I can’t imagine anyone but Drew Barrymore in the role.
Este, Danielle, and Alana Haim are multi-talented songwriters, vocalists, instrumentalists, and all-around badasses (Alana also made a splash – and earned BAFTA and Golden Globe nominations – for her role in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Licorice Pizza). HAIM is one of my favorite musical artists of the past ten years, just pure pop perfection.
- The Brothers Gibb
The Gibbs – Barry, twins Robin and Maurice, and baby brother Andy – have been serenading audiences since the 1950s, when the three eldest brothers formed their first band, the Rattlesnakes. The Bee Gees sold more than 220 million albums and achieved icon status with the release of the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack. Barry, the sole living Gibb brother, is still recording and performing.
Ron and Russell Mael – better known as Sparks – have been making some of rock’s weirdest music for more than fifty years. The brothers have steadfastly defied categorization, moving from art rock to glam to synth pop – and back again. The duo’s latest single, released in March, is titled “The Girl Is Crying in Her Latte”; the music video features Oscar winner Cate Blanchett.
- Wednesday and Pugsley Addams
This iconic sibling pair was created by Charles Addams for The New Yorker; they’ve appeared in numerous adaptations since their first appearance in 1938, including a beloved 1960s sitcom, an animated series, a film series, a live musical, and most recently, the Netflix series Wednesday.
- Dottie Hinson and Kit Keller – A League of Their Own
Yes, A League of Their Own is about the members of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. But at its heart, the beloved film is about two sisters: Dottie, the older and worldlier of the two, ready to settle down and have kids with her GI husband, and Kit, her feisty baby sister. I’ve always loved the chemistry between Geena Davis and Lori Petty; the rivalry feels authentic and earned but at the end of the day, their affection for each other shines through.
Fun fact: A League of Their Own is the most successful baseball movie in history. In fact, it’s made as much at the box office as Field of Dreams and Bull Durham combined.
- Alex and Maia Shibutani
Known collectively as the “Shib sibs”, Alex and Maia are eight-time US medalists, two-time Olympians (they placed 9th at the Sochi games and 3rd in Pyeongchang), and three-time World medalists. They are absolute cutie pies, but most importantly, they are amazing skaters. I heart these two.
- The Pointer Sisters
June, Ruth, and Anita Pointer are one of the most successful sibling pop vocal groups ever, earning thirteen top-twenty hits in the US and winning three Grammy Awards (sister Bonnie left the group in 1978 to pursue a solo career). The trio reached the height of their success in the early 1980s with the albums So Excited! and Break Out. Anita and Bonnie are no longer with us, but Ruth is still performing as the Pointer Sisters with her daughter Issa and her granddaughter Sadako.
- The Brady kids – The Brady Bunch
No list of pop culture siblings would be complete without the musical Brady children: Greg, Marcia, Peter, Jan, Bobby, and Cindy.
- Ann and Nancy Wilson
Ann Wilson was a founding member of Heart; younger sister Nancy joined the band in time for its 1975 debut, Dreamboat Annie. Though they made their best music in the 1970s, they experienced a commercial resurgence in the late ’80s and early ’90s. They formed a side gig, The Lovemongers, to record a blistering remake of Led Zeppelin’s song “The Battle of Evermore” for the soundtrack to the movie Singles, directed by Nancy’s then-husband Cameron Crowe.
For more on Heart – and other badass women of rock – click here: https://peanut-butter-and-julie.com/2022/12/01/badass-women-of-rock/.
- The Wonder Twins
I grew up in the 1970s, the golden age of Saturday morning cartoons, and the various iterations of the Super Friends/Justice League hour was one of my favorites. I particularly loved the shape-shifting superheroes-in-training Zan and Jayna, AKA the Wonder Twins. The twins’ powers were hilariously specific: Zan could only transform into some form of water and Jayna could only become an animal. When they fist-bumped to activate their powers, I couldn’t wait to hear what weird combo it would be.
Fun fact: Zan and Jayna’s personalities were inspired by another iconic sibling pair, Donny and Marie Osmond.
- The Von Trapp kids – The Sound of Music
And finally, from my all-time favorite movie musical, the Von Trapp children: Liesl, Friedrich, Louisa, Kurt, Brigitta, Marta, and Gretl. Nothing else needs to be said:
I had intended this post to be longer, but I ran out of time and had to make some cuts (the Cusacks, A Wrinkle in Time‘s Meg and Charles Wallace Murry, the Coen brothers, and the Sanderson sisters from Disney’s Hocus Pocus, among others). Perhaps I’ll do a volume two at some point. In the meantime, I’d love to hear from y’all: who are YOUR favorite pop culture siblings?
One thought on “Iconic Pop Culture Siblings”
I can totally see the connection between the Wonder Twins and Donnie and Marie!
A League of Their Own has been on my list to rewatch for a while, this reminds me why. It is impossible to sit still when The Pointer Sisters are singing, no? And Heart. Man, I love them. If y’all haven’t seen the tribute they did when Led Zeppelin received Kennedy Center Honors recognition, you should check it out. So amazing to have them to look up to when I was a teen!
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