I don’t know how many of you tuned in last night for the premiere of the star-studded NBC show “Parenthood” but I know I did. With names like Peter Krause and Lauren Graham attached to the show, I had high hopes. After all, they’ve done right by me before. Based on the promos I was expecting a light sitcom about the daily trials and tribulations of parenthood. Granted, it’s not new territory, but if it’s done well, it’s done well and that’s all that maters.
After watching it, I’m not sure if I could have been any more wrong. Sure, there are some funny parts to the show and yes, I was right that Peter Krause and Lauren Graham were entertaining as usual. But in terms of the material, there’s not a whole lot to laugh about. I was overwhelmed by how surprisingly emotional it was. “Parenthood” is a tribute to all of life’s messes and complications, some funny and some more serious and both resonate.
At first I didn’t know how to react, but as I think about it more and more, I’m a little upset with NBC for luring me into it with the promise of a return to comedy for Krause, who I loved in “Sports Night”. But I’m not sure if it would have packed the same punch as it did had I known what I was going into.
The more dramatic story lines have a sense of emotional sincerity about them that’s difficult to achieve with a pilot. Most pilots dip their toes into the water, allowing audiences to get comfortable with these characters before forcing them to invest in their lives. “Parenthood” packed quite a bit into its hour, which was certainly a bold move.
I can understand why people may not enjoy it, especially if they were going into it expecting a comedy, but for me, “Parenthood” took a chance and it paid off. I’m not committed, but I’m interested and that’s not an easy task to do these days. Only time will tell, but for now “Parenthood” is showing some real promise.