We are currently in the midst of the second golden age of television, thanks to an abundance of streaming networks and the emergence of niche programming. However, Hollywood's nauseating love of reboots and remakes smacks of such unoriginality and laziness on behalf of the studios. So it's ironic that one of my favorite shows, and one of the best shows on television and streaming services is Netflix's One Day At A Time, a remake of the 1975 show.
Starring Justina Machado and the legendary Rita Moreno (a member of the prestigious EGOT club), this remake is centered on a divorced veteran mother, her extended family and pesky landlord Schneider as in modern day Los Angeles. One Day At A Time is a seamless and exceedingly watchable combination of comedy, drama and a family's amusing and relatable dysfunction.
So I was aghast when the cast and crew began expressing concern that Netflix had yet to renew it for a third season. In a world where Fuller House not only exists but is thriving, I cannot abide by this at all.
Here are 8 reasons why Netflix needs to renew One Day At A Time immediately.
If you enjoyed seeing Rita Moreno at the this years' Oscars slaying in the same dress she wore at the 1962 ceremony, then you'll love her as Lydia Riera, grandmother, mother and One Day At A Time's resident drama queen. This living EGOT legend is a ruthless scene-stealer as the dramatic and proudly Cuban abuelita. She has that compassionate spark that is universal among grandmothers and a vivaciousness that is hilariously refreshing.
Ms. Moreno shines at the heavy moments too, whether it's describing the despair of missing her native Cuba or fighting with or for her daughter, she sells those moments with a fierceness candor that is rare on television, much less sitcoms. If the world were a fair place, she would score an Emmy nomination for her compelling work. Renewing ODAAT for would give her another shot at Emmy gold.
Certified Super Fresh at 98%
With Netflix's pricey new development deals with Shonda Rhimes, Ryan Murphy and now Barack Obama, it's obvious that Netflix will do anything to build the most alluring roster of shows and movies possible to drive up and maintain subscriptions. But people and critics already genuinely love One Day At A Time, so why not renew it? Season 2 has an astonishing 100% fresh certification on Rotten Tomatoes, a rating that's higher than the Emmy-winning This Is Us, Young Sheldon and Netflix's uber-hyped Stranger Things.
Season 2 fearlessly tackles everything from racism to immigration to the challenges of dating as a gay teenager. "Dear Penelope" is one of the most emotionally gut-wrenching episodes of the season as it follows Penelope's downward spiral into depression after she discontinues her medication and therapy. It's a raw, courageous episode that truly captures the rigors of depression from Penelope dissecting her every action to her inability to get out of bed. Justina Machado's dramatic range is endless as freefalls into Penelope's disease. And it's a powerful reminder to everyone that self-care is always important and mental illness is just--that an illness.
Redefining White Privilege
The Alvarez family has inadvertently adopted a fully grown Canadian landlord named Schneider (Todd Grinnell). He represents what white privilege should be: fleeting. Due to his upbringing as a rich, sheltered Canadian, he possessed a fair amount of ignorance about the issues facing minorities and the poor. The very big difference between Schneider and the rancid people on Twitter who rage against "political correctness" and "identity politics" is that he's willing to learn, adjust his behavior and use his privilege to be a real ally. In just two seasons, Schneider has learned Spanish, Cuban traditions and has educated himself on issues effecting his surrogate family. Beyond that, beneath the quirkiness, glasses and beard, Schneider is all heart.
Does anyone else ship him with Penelope at some point? Hit up the comments below.
I'm out, now what?
In 2018, it's not uncommon to see gay characters on television, however, like other minority characters, they can be used as props from the straight heroes or their love lives are completely ignored after their emotional yet cliched coming out story. ODAAT's Elena Alvarez (Isabella Gomez) spent most of season one coming to terms with her sexuality and finding the courage to share it with her family. And in season 2, she hilariously and awkwardly fumbles into the gay dating scene as a high school kid. Even though it's one of the lighter and sweeter arcs of the season, it still feels authentic and so important to see a character search for romantic love as well as acceptance.
Reviving A Dying Genre
Honestly, there's nothing better than a truly stellar sitcom, and yet it's so hard to create that lightning on a TV set. This may be why so many of the classics are being rebooted. One Day At A Time successfully captures that magic, and gives me hope that the genre, which is hanging on the aging and problematic The Big Bang Theory and Friends reruns, may see a rejuvenation in the future.
Penelope's major arc this season was dating paramedic Max Ferraro (Ed Quinn) aka Super-duper Bradley Cooper. Max, a staggeringly handsome, patient and tall, felt like romantic karma after meeting Penelope's selfish and homophobic husband. And I can only hope that a season 3 would bring back Max even if Penelope has to orchestrate a romantic emergency.
From Black Panther to Queen Sugar to the #TimesUp movement, entertainment consumers are clamoring for more inclusive content that reflects their lives. EP Gloria Calderon Kellett shared just how inclusive the One Day At A Time crew is, and it's awesome.
If you want to help keep One Day At A Time alive, tweet your love of the show to @Netflix using the #ODAAT hashtag and more importantly watch a few episodes now!
Photo Credits: ew.com; usatoday.com
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Small Screen Girl
I am an unabashed pop culture and TV-aholic with no plans to ever seek treatment. Explore this blog and see just how deep my obsession goes.