Yesterday, I finished watching the final episode of the second season of "Parenthood." I started watching the show during it's first season and wasn't sold on it right away, but a few weeks ago I was perusing hulu.com and came across it again. Maybe season 2 was just better than season 1, or maybe I just need a little reinforcement that I am not the only one dealing with tough kids (even though they are not my own!) this summer. Regardless, I really, really, really enjoy watching this show--so much so that I got a little addicted to it and was watching two episodes a day. Unfortunately, that meant that the season was over very quickly.
Here's what I like about the show:
1. The characters are real. Of course they are a bit exaggerated--they have to be for entertainment purposes (the same way you wear extra dark makeup in a play)--but their characteristics and personalities are those of real people.
2. There isn't always a happy ending. These characters, all of them parents, deal with real issues in raising their children. From managing playdates, parenting a child with Autism, talking about sex with a teenage daughter...the process and the outcomes are not always tied up in a pretty bow. The emotions are raw and life does not go according to plan.
3. They demonstrate unconditional love. In a media world where the definition of "love" is often defined as a more fleeting emotion, "Parenthood" is about a family where love is sometimes the only thing that holds them together. In their individual nuclear families and within the extend family, problems arise, people make mistakes, and tragedy strikes. But they always love each other through it and come out on the other side.
4. It's just plain funny. While I've teared up plenty of times watching it, I have also laughed out loud. The characters are unique and interesting, and they have great amusing interactions with each other.
I am becoming more and more intrigued by parenthood in general...probably all this time that I'm spending with four kids of varying ages...and it's nice to see it being portrayed in such a genuine way on television.