If you’re not watching Parenthood (season 1, 2, 3,) you should be. This NBC show is on its fourth season (watch Tuesdays 10/9PM!) but there’s always time to catch up. I won’t spoil any stories of where the Braverman family is now, in case you haven’t watched yet, but it’s always a surprise! When the pilot kicks off, Lauren Graham who plays Sarah Braverman, has moved back home to her parents’ house trying to help her two teenage kids have a better life. The Braverman’s are a big family, and there are plenty of siblings in town with their own chaos and drama going on. The coolest thing about this show is how accurately it depicts reality. The pain and uncertainty of dealing with a diagnosis, the common awkwardness that comes with navigating teenager/parent relationships, trying to juggle a family’s mix of work/school/life, raising kids, dating, friendship drama – it’s all there. It’s not very often that I watch an episode, and not tear up if not straight-up cry. It’s just that great. (And of course, I love that Jason Katims is one of the producers ((Friday Night Lights!)) I love the way you see this family seek each other out for advice, and a shoulder to lean on but also have tough love, stubborness, and the normal wisecracks you’d hear at your own family table. If there was any project on television right now I could choose to be a part of – this would be it! I want to be able to tell stories like these writers. It’s not just the writing though, the actors are phenomenal. All of the relationships are completely believable, you see character traits between the cast and it’s like they’ve inherited genes from one another, little speech patterns and gestures that are so similar it’s hard to believe they’re not biologically related. You cheer on this family during their shining moments, from swim lessons to blossoming bonds and the courage to have hard conversations, you wince as you watch them make impulsive decisions knowing the repercussions are going to be messy, and you feel for them when the hard times come: marital issues, sickness, heartbreak – just all of the challenges that life throws our way good and bad. Every week, it’s an emotional roller coaster, making me laugh and ripping my heart out but if this isn’t quality television, I don’t know what is! Also, I am such a sucker for the show’s opening credits. The montage features personal photos of the cast, when they were younger and “Forever Young.” So great!
Watch this video to get a peak of season one: