Frank opening his pants each time he sits down?
In the Everybody Loves Raymond series, why does Frank (the Grandfather) always opens the zip of his pants when he sits down in chair?
People sometimes undo their pants when the are bloated after a meal. The ever-uncouth Frank does this routinely, in front of others, reminding us that he really doesn't care what anyone thinks about him. This was a running gag that appears to have been originated by the creators of the show.
In a book about the creation of the series, You're Lucky You're Funny: How Life Becomes a Sitcom, Phil Rosenthal writes about the casting of Frank Barone. They were looking for a "nonethnic ethnic" to contrast with the more ethnic Italian/Jewish Ray Romano and Brad Garrett. When Peter Boyle arrived for the audition he was furious because he had had trouble finding the place.
He scared me, and I gave him the part.
He happened to be funny, too, when he calmed down. But we saw that we could use a little of that anger... Lucky for us, he was also hilarious at sitting in a chair with his pants open and rifling one-liner at his wife, his sons, and anyone else in range. We had the father.