Fred was a bit more sarcastic than insulting most of the time. When he insulted Lamont, Esther, Rollo, Julio and others, they insulted him back. Fred didn’t get mad at them. He seemed to take it all in good humor. Deep down, Fred liked to insult people because he thought it was fun. The people he insulted obviously thought it was in fun and good humor, because they kept coming back for more. Also, they loved insulting him back. Fred could dish it out, but he could also take it like a man. He seemed like the kind of guy who would have to insult you to show that he liked you. Many times, he showed more of a good side to his personality. Also, Fred used a lot of hand gestures, which were funny. For example, he waved his hand from side to side instead of calling gay’s what they were – GAY. The bad side of Fred was not necessarily his personality as a racist. Fred was just plain lazy, and didn’t want to do anything. Instead, he wanted others to do it for him.
Archie was not a lazy man. He was a working man who supported his wife and family, although he complained about having to support the Meat Head. But what made Archie different from Fred was the old double standard. I can insult you, but don’t you dare insult me. When Archie insulted people, he had that look of terror in his eyes, which was like a wolf ready to attack its victim. You know that he meant what he said. Archie not only insulted people’s race and nationality. He also insulted their religious and political beliefs.
The characters were different
Redd Foxx was a natural comedian. Therefore, he was better at portraying this type of character, and it showed on the screen. He had friends like Grady, Bubba, Skillet and Melvin to compliment his role as a comedian. Fred was the main man, but these guys were just as funny.
Carroll O’Connor was more a dramatic actor than a comedian. He seemed like he had to adapt himself to play this type of role. Many times, Archie seemed like a fish out of water.