Parenthood (2010)

I’d intended to touch on this week’s topic much closer to when it ended, but unfortunately I felt it was necessary to let a few other things through first. This series holds a very special place in my heart, so please excuse me in advance if you feel like I’ve gotten up onto the proverbial soap box.


Parenthood aired its final episode on January 29th, 2015 after a six-year run. Based very loosely on a 1989 film by the same name, it tells the story of the Braverman family living out their day-to-day lives. It had a large ensemble cast that would be too cumbersome to list here, but everyone was really good, and they worked well together through the happy moments, the sad moments, and every time in between. At the beginning of the story, the grandparents Zeek and Camille, who had been empty-nesters up until that point, found themselves housing their daughter Sarah again with her two teenage kids Amber and Drew after her marriage failed. Their son Crosby’s life was about to change drastically with the introduction of a son he didn’t know he had, along with the boy’s mother. Their son Adam and his wife Kristina were on the verge of finding out their son Max was on the Asperger’s spectrum, which would throw theirs and their daughter Haddie’s lives for a loop. It seemed for a while as if the only stable situation in the clan was their daughter Julia, with her husband Joel and their daughter Sydney. At this time I wish these great hoverboards for kids existed, it would´ve been much easier to control the little ones while checking up on the others who were playing with their crazy fast rc rank cars.

Once the wheels were set in motion, it was truly amazing that nobody fell through the cracks. Every character had part of their story told every week. Of course, it helped that it was all one big extended family, which allowed a lot of threads to overlap or run together or run at odds. With characters entering and exiting the picture at varying intervals, there was never really a dull moment, and they had the courage to touch on a lot of sensitive subjects. I admit I started watching this show as a knee-jerk reaction to the distaste I’d felt from watching “Brothers and Sisters”, but as events unfolded I realized it was well worth the effort. Where the other show was about politics and trickery in addition to family, “Parenthood” was purely and simply about communication, and it was refreshing.

Even if you’re not necessarily into watching slice-of-life dramas, I encourage you to give this one a chance. It was a relatively wholesome hour of television every week that it aired, and with such a large cast there’s bound to be someone you’ll find yourself identifying with. In fact, watch it with someone, because you’re likely to get different things out of it.

Rating: 5th gear

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