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Are TV Characters' Salaries Realistic?
From Orange County to Wisteria Lane, TV characters always seem to be well-dressed, debt-free and driving expensive cars up to their pristine homes. But despite their alluring jobs, most of these characters would be solidly middle-class in the real world. Take a look at how much some TV characters would really be bringing home each year.
Think back: When was the last time you saw Carrie Bradshaw chopping vegetables or preheating an oven to cook herself dinner on "Sex and the City?" How about shopping on the clearance rack or setting foot inside a discount store?
Nope, Carrie is a Prada-buying, cosmopolitan-drinking, Manolo Blahnik-collecting kind of girl. She eats out constantly, resides in a roomy one-bedroom Manhattan apartment, and never seems to think twice before slapping down her credit card for more designer duds.
Even her job ? sex columnist for a New York City newspaper ? is glamorous. But don't let the "Sex and the City" writers fool you: Carrie's annual columnist salary wouldn't come close to affording her that luxurious lifestyle (trust me). According to Payscale.com, a New York City journalist with 10 years of experience earns a median annual salary of about $57,000.
This kind of income-stretching isn't unique to HBO. The "Friends" crew on NBC did some fancy budgeting of their own. For example, consider Jennifer Aniston's character, Rachel Green. In the early seasons, the cash Rachel earns serving lattes ? badly ? at the neighborhood coffee joint manages to pay rent on an enormous New York apartment and feed her shopping addiction so well she becomes a style icon.
From Orange County to Wisteria Lane, TV characters always seem to be well-dressed, debt-free and driving expensive cars up to their pristine homes. But despite their alluring jobs, most of these characters would be solidly middle-class in the real world.
Here's a look at how much your favorite TV characters would really be bringing home each year:
Even in the real world, these characters would be in the upper income brackets.
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