What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this show addresses mature themes. Past plotlines have dealt with illness (cancer, depression, stress-related incontinence), parent-child clashes, homosexuality, unwanted pregnancy, peer pressure, and teen sex. Family and friendship relationships are examined closely through these hot-button issues.
What's the story?
Dr. Andy Brown (Treat Williams), his teenage son Ephram (Gregory Smith), and preteen daughter Delia (Vivien Cardone) are just learning how to be a family. Andy was formerly an inattentive father, mostly absent from his children's lives until their mother's death. Now he's trying to get to know them. Ephram is a gifted pianist and somewhat of an outcast in the small mountain town the Browns have moved to. He was miserable at first, but a close friendship with Amy Abbot (Emily VanCamp), the daughter of the town's only other doctor, plus breakthroughs in his strained relationship with his own dad, keep him sticking around. Meanwhile, as Delia starts to grow out of her tomboy years, she poses greater and greater challenges to her inexperienced father.
Is it any good?
Like long-running WB family drama 7th Heaven, EVERWOOD tries hard to involve adults and kids alike and tackles some heavy subjects. Both series recognize that today's kids aren't spared from tragedy and difficult decisions. But Everwood has proven to be the richer series, with characters who aren't so perfect, and actors who can give them dimension. Each character is flawed -- and all strive to become better people, sometimes failing. Viewers will appreciate that the series depicts sibling relationships in an especially positive light.
Little kids won't find much of interest in Everwood, nor is the show meant for them. Situations are teen- and adult-oriented and deliberately controversial. The young characters have some problems, but overall they're wholesome, smart, caring role models. Coping with death continues to be a major theme of the show. Families who have lost loved ones may benefit from talking about how characters on the show work through painful emotions.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the serious and sometimes controversial topics addressed on the show. Ephram and Andy's relationship has never been harmonious. How might they work together to improve their father/son bond? Amy and Rose have had trouble in their relationship. How might a disease as serious as cancer affect a patient's interactions with family members? Another rich topic is coping with loss. How do the show's characters handle losing their loved ones? Is it realistic?