cress williams

Photo Credit: Ron P. Jaffe/CBS.

Today the parents we see on television are a much more realistic depiction of the parents we see (and are) at home. Some TV dads stay home. Many of the families we see on our favorite shows are made up of beloved parental surrogates: siblings, godparents, friends, and neighbors. And you know what? These small-screen families feel most like our own, only better, when they aren't so "perfect."

As we celebrate Father's Day and dads on their annual day of thanks, we take a moment to recognize our current crop of favorite fictional fathers. We toast the laughter and invaluable lessons they've given us.

1. The Toughest Parents Can Be The Biggest Softies

\u200bCedric the Entertainer holding a basketball in TV show The Neighborhood.

Cedric the Entertainer as Calvin Butler in The Neighborhood.

Photo Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS.

Calvin Butler, The Neighborhood

Calvin Butler (Cedric the Entertainer) is not short on opinions, nor is he shy about sharing them. But under that gruff demeanor is a man who loves his family and his neighborhood. Witness Calvin telling neighbor Dave (Max Greenfield) that he needs to appreciate his mother (Marilu Henner) while she's still around.

Stream full episodes of The Neighborhood on CBS All Access.

2. Pain And Joy Can Coexist

\u200bWalton Goggins in TV show The Unicorn.

Walton Goggins as Wade Felton in The Unicorn.

Photo Credit: Erik Voake/CBS.

Wade Felton, The Unicorn

Watching Wade (Walton Goggins) struggle to reenter the world of relationships while working his way through mourning his deceased wife—and raising two daughters—reminds us that loss is inevitable, but life goes on. Wade is living proof that it's possible to find a way through the toughest times, especially with support from family and loyal friends like Wade's pals Michelle, Ben, Delia and Forrest. Push through the grief, and one day you'll find yourself dancing like nobody's watching when you (think) you're alone in the kitchen.

Stream full episodes of The Unicorn on CBS All Access.

3. Our Homes Are Always Open

Actors \u200bDaniel Ezra and Taye Diggs in TV show All American.

Daniel Ezra as Spencer James and Taye Diggs as Billy Baker in The CW series All American.

Photo Credit: Jesse Giddings/The CW.

Billy Baker, All American

As the varsity coach of fictional South Crenshaw High School in Los Angeles, Billy Baker (Taye Diggs) is a father figure to many, including star athlete Spencer James (Daniel Ezra), who eventually moves into his coach's home.

Inspired by the life of pro football player Spencer Paysinger, The CW drama series All American captures their poignant relationship and showcases the positive power of parenting—even when the father figure isn't related by blood.

Stream All American free only on The CW.

4. We Can Work It Out

\u200bLance Barber in TV show Young Sheldon

Lance Barber as George Sr. in Young Sheldon.

Photo Credit: Bill Inoshita/CBS.

George Cooper Sr., Young Sheldon

George (Lance Barber) is a Texas high school football coach with a science-obsessed super-nerd for a son. The budding genius's fondness for bowties and Newtonian physics might be difficult for his dad to relate to, but George Sr.'s support and love for Sheldon (Iain Armitage) shines through when it counts, especially when the two put their heads together to convince Mary to let Sheldon attend college in the Season 3 finale.

Stream full episodes of Young Sheldon on CBS All Access.

5. Family Comes First

Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, David Levy, and Annie Murphy in TV show Schitt's Creek.

Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, David Levy, and Annie Murphy in Schitt's Creek.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Pop TV.

Johnny Rose, Schitt's Creek

Played by real father and son Eugene and Dan Levy, Johnny and David Rose were once part of a dynasty so rich that Johnny bought the town of Schitt's Creek as a joke birthday gift for his son. But when the Roses lose their fortune, they are forced to live in two adjacent rooms of a rundown motel in Schitt's Creek, the only asset the government didn't seize because they thought it had no value. How wrong they were.

At first dismayed by little things like a leaky roof, Johnny slowly discovers what really matters: family, even if yours is clueless about practical matters like ATMs, insurance, and the cost of Parisian eye cream ("You want the smooth under-eyes of a 16-year-old? Get a job!"). Schitt's Creek's blend of humor and heart won legions of fans and reminded us that love matters more than luxury.

All seasons of Schitts Creek available to stream on Pop Now.

6. Learn To Laugh At Yourself

Rob Corddry and Omar Miller in TV show The Unicorn.

Rob Corddry as Forrest and Omar Miller as Ben in The Unicorn.

Photo Credit: Patrick Wymore/CBS.

Forrest and Ben, The Unicorn

Forrest (Rob Corddry) and Ben (Omar Miller) are champs when it comes to friendship and loyalty, but their skills as wingmen leave a lot to be desired, as they discover when they volunteer to take to widowed single dad Wade (Walton Goggins) out to meet women. Ben's attempts to flirt barely draw a glance from the ladies passing by, while Forrest's startle people enough to make them stumble. They might not have much game, but they've got plenty of humor. Life's too short not to laugh, even if you're sometimes the butt of the joke.

Stream full episodes of The Unicorn on CBS All Access.

7. Take A Stand For What's Right

\u200bCress Williams , Nafessa Williams, and China Anne McClain in TV show Black Lightning.

Cress Williams as Jefferson Pierce, Nafessa Williams as Anissa Pierce and China Anne McClain as Jennifer Pierce in Black Lightning.

Photo Credit: Annette Brown/The CW.

Jefferson Pierce, Black Lightning

After years of fighting The 100, Jefferson Pierce (Cress Williams) hung up his superhero suit to spend time with his daughters and serve his community as principal of Garfield High. But he's soon reminded—and he reminds us, as Black Lightning—that problems don't get solved on their own, so we must all take a stand against injustice when we see it.

8. Change Is Scary, But It's Unavoidable

\u200bMatthew McCann and Matt LeBlanc on the set of TV show Man With A Plan.

Matthew McCann as Teddy and Matt LeBlanc as Adam in Man With A Plan.

Photo Credit: Robert Voets/CBS.

Adam Burns, Man With A Plan

When his wife returns to work, Adam Burns (Matt LeBlanc) finds out he'll be spending a lot more quality time with his kids. Suddenly, this old-school dad is confronted with the challenges of modern parenting, from deodorant emergencies to veganism to a13-year-old girl "all whacked up on hormones." His three kids expect their "Fun Daddy" to be a pushover, but Adam learns to take charge and lay down the law—with plenty of laughs along the way. He's a good reminder that life is bound to throw you curves, so you might as well lean into them.

Stream full episodes of Man With A Plan on CBS All Access.

9. Men Make Great Hosts

Will Estes, Vanessa Ray, Bridget Moynahan, Tom Selleck, Sami Gayle, and Donnie Wahlberg in TV show Blue Bloods.

Will Estes as Jamie Reagan, Vanessa Ray as Officer Eddie Janko, Bridget Moynahan as Erin Reagan, Tom Selleck as Frank Reagan, Sami Gayle as Nicky Reagan-Boyle, Donnie Wahlberg as Danny Reagan in Blue Bloods.

Photo Credit: John Paul Filo/CBS.

Francis "Frank" Reagan, Blue Bloods

"Family matters" is the underlying theme of this series, which regularly features four generations of the Reagan clan at the home of Frank (Tom Selleck) in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, for their weekly Sunday dinner. While the law-enforcement officer spends plenty of his off-duty time refereeing family squabbles, he's rightly confident that at this table, everyone has each other's backs.

Stream full episodes of Blue Bloods on CBS All Access.

10. Never Give Up

Max Greenfield in the TV show The Neighborhood.

Max Greenfield as Dave Johnson in The Neighborhood.

Photo Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS.

Dave Johnson, The Neighborhood

An eternal optimist, Dave Johnson (Max Greenfeld) refuses to be daunted by the initially reluctant reception he and his family get from their new neighbor Calvin Butler (Cedric the Entertainer) in The Neighborhood. True, Dave's prone to social blunders and he faces setbacks—including falling off the roof and accidentally knocking out the power in the Butlers' house—but he keeps trying.

Like every glass-half-full guy, he knows instinctively that things are hard before they get easy. And sure enough, as the show unfolds, he and Calvin discover each other's humanity under their differences.

Stream full episodes of The Neighborhood on CBS All Access.

Photography by Derek Blanks.

It's a bird ... It's a plane ... It's some of your favorite crime fighters from The CW and the DC Comics universe like you've never seen them before!

We're celebrating superheroes, comic book characters, and pop culture phenoms with these powerful portraits from the Watch vault. Scroll to see more stunning photos of these super TV stars from Supergirl, Arrow, Black Lightning, and The Flash—showing off their ultra glamorous, not-so-secret identities.

All that glitters

Melissa Benoist in a sparkly red top reclining on a chair.

Supergirl star Melissa Benoist—and her super friends—go glam in these exclusive photos.

Photography by Christopher Ross.

Stream Supergirl only on The CW.

Right on target

Portrait of Stephen Amell in a red print jacket.

This smoldering shot proves that Arrow star Stephen Amell is making his mark.

Photography by Keiron O'Connor.

Stream Arrow only on The CW.

Shock and awe

Cress Williams in a purple suit.

When not protecting the fictional city of Freeland with his superpowers on Black Lightning, actor Cress Williams shows off his sophisticated side.

Photography by Derek Blanks.

Summer beauty

Candice Patton in a gold sequined dress.

The Flash star Candice Patton knows how to relax.

Photography by Christopher Ross.

Stream The Flash only on The CW.

Super suave

Stephen Amell in a suit.

This Star City crime fighter looks good without his disguise.

Photography by Keiron O'Connor.

Stream Arrow only on The CW.

Girl power

Melissa Benoist posing in a fashion shoot.

Supergirl star Melissa Benoist is out of this world.

Photography by Christopher Ross.

Stream Supergirl only on The CW.

Chartreuse crush

Candice Patton in a chartreuse yellow sun dress.

The woman behind Iris West is striking in this vibrant Guess dress.

Photography by Christopher Ross.

Stream The Flash only on The CW.

Lightning strikes

Actor Cress Williams leaning against a wall.

Cress Williams takes charge.

Photography by Derek Blanks.

Force of nature

Candice Patton on a swing above a small lagoon.

Candice Patton gets into the swing of things on location in Port Antonio, Jamaica.

Photography by Christopher Ross.

Stream The Flash only on The CW.

Fashionable in Ferragamo

Actor Stephen Amell modeling a designer suit.

Oliver Queen suits up for a different occasion.

Photography by Keiron O'Connor.

Stream Arrow only on The CW.

She's got the look

Kara Danvers is the universe's strongest, savviest, and most sophisticated Supergirl.

Photography by Christopher Ross.

Stream Supergirl only on The CW.

Star power

Cress Williams sitting on the front of a rusted truck.

Cress Williams' Black Lightning just may be the superhero we've all been waiting for.

Photography by Derek Blanks.

SEE MORE: Why We Love Comics And Superhero TV Shows

Superhero Star Cress Williams Makes Sparks Fly

Cress Williams of The CW's Black Lightning takes charge in this exclusive Watch! photo shoot.

Photography by Derek Blanks | Styled by Christina Pacelli

This stud may play a kick-ass crime fighter on Black Lightning, but Cress Williams' guard wasn't up on the Watch set. When the actor isn't busy living out his childhood dream of being a dual identity superhero, he brings electricity and energy to a fashion photo shoot.

Photographer Derek Blanks captured The CW star for the July/August 2018 issue of Watch. Scroll to see these hot photos—including web-exclusive bonus images—plus learn fun facts and interview tidbits about Cress Williams!

SUBSCRIBE NOW: Enjoy 4 Digital Plus 2 Print/Digital Issues Of Watch Per Year— For Free!

Black Lightning airs Mondays at 9/8c on The CW. Stream next day free only on The CW!

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