Thursday, September 20, 2012

My "New Normal" TV Obsession

Well, "obsession" might be a bit strong. But it's close.

Have you seen "The New Normal," yet? It's on NBC on Tuesday nights (9:30/8:30c) and it's kind of amazing.

There were all sorts of people saying "Oh, it's already been done. An inter-generational comedy with gay characters, who cares?" And I admit that I was kind of afraid that I'd watch it and I'd feel the same way.

But I did, and I didn't.

I mean... I watched it, and I didn't feel that it was a rehash of other things.

True, it's an intergenerational series. There's a mother and daughter and the mother's grandmother (and, thus, also the daughter's great-grandmother, although she doesn't want to admit it). But the family dynamics aren't stereotypical. They're weird (both the family and the dynamics). Which, really, is how most families are when seen from the outside.

And, yes, there are gay characters. But - for once - those characters are actually MAIN characters, and not just relatives of the main characters, or friends of them, or semi-regulars on the show. They're a couple who are madly in love with each other although they are fairly opposite in styles. But they're chemistry is great, and the way the show lets the characters play off of each other is really refreshing.

I was pretty much won over when, during the pilot episode, the two guys were in bed together. And they kissed. Considering that two men kissing was still taboo during the heyday of "Will & Grace" not so many years ago, it was nice to have NBC stepping up this time and saying, in essence, "this is what our show is about, please deal with it."

But I also didn't want just another fluffy show. I know it's a comedy, but I wanted some reality, too.

And I got it. In fact, I got enough of it that I've both laughed and cried during all three episodes so far. This week, it was when they (the two guys and the mother - who is acting as their surrogate) were confronted with how they'll deal with bigotry in the eyes of their new child. There was something so... true in it that I couldn't help but get emotional. And then I laughed because of what happened next. Because, after all, it is a sitcom on the most basic level.

A really smart sitcom, but a sitcom, nonetheless.

In other words, I'm giving it a solid A, and a huge recommendation that you should watch it. And I'm doing this all with my fingers crossed that NBC doesn't cancel it any time soon. (We're waiting for some multidimensionality to the grandmother's character, otherwise it would be an A+.)

1 comment:

Lorry said...

We like it.