Wednesday, October 12, 2016

What I’m Watching: Better Things

Better Things: Season 1, Episode 5 “Future Fever” (B+)

This was a great showcase of Sam as a mom, dealing with her two older children and their angst. Sam was more concerned about missing her day providing snacks than about Frankie having a fever of over 100 degrees, and leave it to the impossibly mature social change-driven daughter to be cognizant of the fact that medication would just mask her symptoms and she would still be contagious. Much more of the episode was devoted to Max, who is rarely polite to her mother but got a harsh reality check when her guidance counselor told her that she hadn’t gotten her act together and should probably consider junior colleges. Naturally, Sam would have no trouble talking with her friends about their many abortions, both imagined and with their own mothers, in front of all three of her daughters, and that would provide a positive space for Max to open up about how she’s a loser and had to start trying to be “that kind of smart” a while ago. After she cried, Sam did a phenomenal job showing her daughter that it was both possible to look and be professional and to succeed even if she didn’t end up going down the traditional college route. I enjoyed Sam interviewing a bank teller about when she started her job and if she went to college. Sam refusing to pray for a woman who she knew hated religion was entertaining, as was her attempt to salvage a bad date by suggesting that the boring guy talk to her daughter, to which he was all too eager and everyone responded with “Ew!”

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