Other Show Reviews / Television

Parenthood “Together” Review

It has only been off for a couple weeks, but I have really missed Parenthood. Its fourth season has been one of the highlights of this Fall TV season for me. “Together” continues where it left off giving most of the characters some time this week.

This year’s biggest storyline has been Kristina’s cancer and this week it follows both Adam and Kristina in the days leading up to her first chemotherapy treatment. I actually prefer Adam’s side of things here though that is kind of always the case with this particular group I guess. Adam is just sort of losing his mind over it all. He’s snapping at people, but you feel for him because you know he’s at the end of his rope. Plus he’s always such a good guy. I loved the conversation where Crosby is trying to get Adam to go get a drink with him. When Crosby offers to pay, Adam remarks “I really look that bad huh?” or something to that effect. You know Crosby’s cheap. Man I love those two.

Of course, Kristina is going crazy as well. In her current condition, she isn’t really allowed to do anything. So she’s got Cordelia (who actually gets to do something this week… surprise!) over helping out, changing stuff around and generally driving her nuts. Then her friends drop by and Kristina is barely able to keep it together (and let’s be honest those two are pretty intolerable). And at some point she does lose it a bit. She drives to pick up Max and gets an ice cream. The latter of which reminds me (in the best way it could given the circumstances) of a story about my grandfather and a cake when he was sick. And the conversation where Cordelia gives Kristina the shirt at the end was a really sweet one I thought. Kristina has never been a favorite of mine, but she has been really, really good in the cancer storyline this season.

Julia and Joel continue to deal with their new child Victor while Sydney continues to barely exist this year (and Joel even takes her out, so she isn’t in Victor’s way at one point… I’m paraphrasing to serve my own purpose here, but still!). As hard as Victor was to deal with at the beginning of this season, I have really come around on this plot. And I think it’s because Julia and Joel keep selling me on it. A few episodes back it was that smile Joel had while playing catch with his new son. This episode it is the excitement in Julia’s eyes as she watches Victor playing with his friend. I was honestly kind of worried when they decided to do the play date hang out with his old friend, but it really worked out nicely. And Julia learning some Spanish was a nice touch at the end.

Sarah Braverman is mostly just around in a supporting role this week, but both of her kids have prominent storylines in “Together”. Because I’m a terrible judge-y person, I am not buying my man Luke… erm… Ryan dating Amber. But I will give him a pass since he’s going through some stuff. Kidding aside, I have absolutely loved Matt Lauria as a war vet dealing with the task of integrating back into society. As Zeke points out, this might end badly for Amber, but Ryan is a really nice guy, so I hope this is handled well. It should be interesting to see how this all plays out. Amber is already picking up on some odd things about her new guy.

The worst storyline of the night definitely goes to Drew. He clearly wants to get back together with his ex. This leads to an awkward moment at her doorstep when he first leaves a sympathy basket and runs off. Then he gets to meet her new boyfriend who tells Drew that he is so jealous of him being a senior in high school still or something stupid like that. It is silly and awkward and leads to Drew telling his ex off including the bit about his aunt having cancer. And what does this lead to you ask? Well it leads to a rendezvous at Mark Cyr’s apartment… you know, Drew’s new pad. Where by all accounts Drew plays the “my aunt has cancer” card hard in an attempt to bang his ex. When he goes to make his move, I figure, “Oh she’ll pull away now… she’s here for him, but not like that.” Nope! She’s here for him any way he needs her apparently. And now we probably won’t see Drew for a few weeks because that is how this show rolls. 43 minutes simply isn’t enough time to squeeze Drew in weekly.

A few more things:

  • This is the first individual review/recap I have done besides Fringe on here. I am going to attempt to do more episode reviews each week. I won’t be doing any others weekly like Fringe, but I plan to pick a couple each week that I have a chance to watch that night and then have a review up the next day. Parenthood is one of this week’s. I hope to check in with it again at some point down the line. Also going to try and do some kind of Best/Worst for each review from now on… like below!
  • The Best Character of the Week: I have to go with Adam here. He’s often the best, but watching him struggle to hold himself together with everything going on was the big winner for me this week.
  • The Worst Character of the Week: Drew’s ex-girlfriend I guess. She handled his dumping badly earlier this year. Handles him showing up at her door badly this week. And then you know, goes for the sympathy bang which struck me as a bit silly too. Will probably just break Drew’s heart again which I’d feel bad about except you know… leveraging your aunt’s cancer for sex gets you no sympathy from me. None.
  • Parenthood has so many characters, it never fits them all into an episode very well. It is not a bad thing necessarily, but some characters can go MIA from time to time is all. This week it is Jasmine and Jabbar. Crosby is also in it sparingly. Looking back at this season, they don’t have a big season long arc really. They did have the ridiculously good “n” word plot the one week, but no real big arc like the cancer, new son and love triangle ones that the other main Braverman siblings have. Oh and Sydney was also largely MIA, but you know there is a much shinier new latino kid in that household who has already become less of a brat than her, so he gets the screentime these days.
  • So apparently Drew’s ex-girlfriend’s name is Amy which I just discovered when going to add pictures. I felt like there was a reason I forgot though, so this review stays as is!

So another strong episode if not quite as stellar as a couple of those episodes earlier in the season. I liked just about everything in this episode, except that Drew nonsense… have I mentioned how absurd that was. Okay then. Great episode. Hopefully this season keeps it up. It’s been fantastic so far.

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2 thoughts on “Parenthood “Together” Review

  1. I currently have a blog in my drafts that talks about this show. I’m only in the 3rd season, so I didn’t really read anything you wrote (due to potential spoilers), but this is definitely one of my favorite tv shows of the decade. Glad to see I’m not alone!

    • Oh yeah, this blog is spoilerific. That is cool you dig the show. This new season might be its best, so you have something to look forward to. Looking forward to your blog on the show.

      Also the creator of this made Friday Night Lights the TV show which is fantastic too. It has the same kind of heart and emotion that this show has. I’ve also been told by some friends who don’t like football that it isn’t necessary to be a fan of football (in case you aren’t). Might be a good addition to your Netflix queue when you finish Parenthood!

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