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The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Good Luck Charlie is a lighthearted sitcom about a family coping with the challenges that accompany a new (and unexpected) baby. The show draws humor from standard family fare like older siblings’ lukewarm responses to a new baby, and parents’ difficulties managing the needs of a large family. Apart from some very mild flirting (two of the characters are teens, after all), there’s nothing iffy in this funny spin on modern family life.
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What's the story?
GOOD LUCK CHARLIE centers on the Duncans, an all-American family of five whose comfortable routine is upset with the unexpected arrival of baby Charlotte (aka “Charlie,” Mia Talerico). With mom Amy (Leigh-Allyn Baker) headed back to work and dad Bob (Eric Allan Kramer) busy with his pest-control business, it’s up to teenage Teddy (Bridgit Mendler) and PJ (Jason Dolley) to pitch in caring for their little sister, all the while maintaining their own busy social lives. Both are fairly good sports about it, but 10-year-old Gabe (Bradley Steven Perry) isn’t so understanding, seeing as Charlie’s the reason he’s been relegated to the dreaded status of a middle child.
Is it any good?
A successful sitcom is one that resonates with viewers’ own experiences, and family-centered shows like this one face the challenge of appealing to a diverse array of family dynamics. When it comes to the modern American household, one size definitely does not fit all, and honing in on this viewer niche can be tricky in today’s society.
Fortunately, though, Good Luck Charlie’s content is well rounded enough that there’s something for everyone to enjoy (though viewers expecting any edginess will be disappointed). Whether it’s a seasoned mom’s uncertainties over returning to the work force or a tween’s reaction to being overshadowed by a new sibling, every member of the family will find something to relate to -- and get a laugh out of the show’s take on the ups and downs of family life.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about coping with change. Kids: How do you respond to big changes in your life like the ones in Good Luck Charlie? Do you find the prospect of change exciting or frightening? To whom do you turn for help when you face a new challenge?
Kids: What are your responsibilities within your family? Why are those tasks important? What are the repercussions of not fulfilling your responsibilities? How have your responsibilities changed as you’ve gotten older?
How does the media portray family life? Do you think shows like this reflect typical American families? Why or why not? How has our definition of family changed throughout history? What role does the media play in people’s acceptance of these changes?
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