So Seinfeld, The Cosby Show, Who's the Boss, Everybody Loves Raymond, Growing Pains, Roseanne... they are all built off the living room set where you watch the actors watching TV in the living room and we only see the set from one side. Has there every been a multi-cam live action comedy that we see the whole house? (yes I know that these are shot in a studio on a set - I am asking either has one been shot in a real house or a set so elaborate that you see everything)

  • Added a bit, since you can see it in single-cam and animated sitcoms all the time. ;)
    – Walt
    Commented Oct 15, 2015 at 6:17
  • Related: tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ThreeWallSet
    – cde
    Commented Oct 15, 2015 at 8:27
  • F.R.I.E.N.D.S. is definitely The one. Or I don't get the question.
    – Kyslik
    Commented Oct 15, 2015 at 14:01
  • 1
    One of the rare instances I remember of a sitcom shot in a studio that showed us the 4th wall (the "TV's other side") was this moment in Married... with Children (from the episode Peggy Turns 300). But the shot was clearly edited in.
    – Walt
    Commented Oct 15, 2015 at 17:43
  • The title of the question sounds extremely specific but the body does not. Are you actually asking specifically about a physical TV on set? Or are you asking about shows filmed on a stage/set vs. not?
    – DA.
    Commented Oct 15, 2015 at 18:27

2 Answers 2


Any show filmed in front of a studio audience is on a stage. So it's like a play. There is only one easily shot 'side' since the set only has 3 walls (the '4th wall' being the side the audience sees).

You likely would never see the full 'back side' of any object on the set due to this, as that would end up showing the audience.

A rare exception to this would be any show that is filmed in front of a live studio audience that 'breaks the 4th wall' and actually included the audience as part of the show. It's The Gary Shandling Show is one that comes to mind.

Shows that use a single camera shooting are much more likely to have the camera coming from all angles, as they take the time to set up each shot, and there's no '4th wall' to deal with (as there is no audience but rather a full enclosed set or on location).

There still may be a practical 4th wall in that you simply may have a lot of crew and equipment set up behind the camera and moving them could be a chore--potentially limiting the number of angles a scene will get re-shot at.

Has there every been a multi-cam live action comedy that we see the whole house?

I don't know, but my guess is no, because that's not how multi-cam action comedies are shot. If you're shooting on location, then you'd typically be using the single-camera model. Multi-camera shooting makes senses when you have a fixed stage. Single-camera shooting makes sense when you are shooting on location.

Plus there's the practical issue that shows shot in front of a live audience have to have at least one wall open for the audience to see.


In the BBC comedy 'The Royle Family' you not only get to see the people watching the TV but, on occasion it flips to a view when you can see the TV and what's on it.

  • 1
    It's single-cam, though. Ostensibly, you can see that in many single-cam sitcoms.
    – Walt
    Commented Oct 15, 2015 at 12:24

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