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Although Steve is relentlessly annoying, and has cost the Winslow family large amounts of time and money from his own clumsy demeanor, he has shown he's more mature than Eddie is in accepting responsibility.
He takes his job seriously, and it is often suggested that he is very good at what he does, despite having an incompetent if genial boss in Lt. Fitting into the cop stereotype, he has an avid love for doughnuts and other junk food.
This plays into the fact that he is overweight, and in several stories throughout the series, Carl's physical health plays a role (in the season 4 episode "Driving Carl Crazy", he is revealed to have high blood pressure, which got dangerous because he tried to dodge dieting).
Reginald Vel Johnson later made one appearance on Perfect Strangers in the 1988 episode "Crimebusters" as Carl Winslow, policeman and husband of Harriette Winslow.
Due to large popularity of Payton's character with audiences, the character was spun off to its own show, Family Matters.
The series had a total of 12 main characters, with some characters portrayed by multiple actors.