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In the Motherhood
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that sex is a hot topic for the women at the center of this sitcom, so references to frequency of sex, likes and dislikes in bed, and partners' sexual prowess are all fair game -- as is foreplay like kissing and fondling. Expect some drinking and a dash of salty language tossed into the mix. Although none of that will be new to teens familiar with primetime television,. the show's humor is definitely geared toward parents -- particularly moms -- so teens won't appreciate much of the content that's rooted in been-there, done-that experience.
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What's the story?
Three moms with vastly different views on parenting are the source of plenty of laughs on IN THE MOTHERHOOD. The show centers on free-wheeling Rosemary (Megan Mulally), newly single mother of two Jane (Cheryl Hines), and aspiring "perfect" mom Emily (Jessica St. Clair) -- three women trying to balance the challenges of family, work, and social life while also maintaining their sanity. Their different styles and situations sometimes put the women at odds with each other, but they're all working toward the same goal of surviving the rocky road of parenthood.
Is it any good?
This series reaps the benefits of good writing and a strong cast, which includes Saturday Night Live alum Horatio Sanz as Jane's male nanny (or "manny") and RonReaco Lee as Emily's equally obsessive husband, Jason. The characters do a good job of representing the true spectrum of parenting styles, and adult viewers will easily find the humor in relating what they see on the show to their own circumstances or those of someone they know.
The show's frequent sexual references and occasional strong language aren't envelope pushing by primetime standards, nor are Rosemary's irreverent comments on everything from pregnancy to overweight people. That said, the show is best appreciated by those with first-hand knowledge of the ups and down of parenting, so teens who lack that experience will miss some of the context that makes the series funny.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about being a parent. Teens: Do you look forward to having kids someday? What challenges do you foresee as a parent? How do you plan to cope with them? How do you think your own parenting style will be shaped by your upbringing? Do you think the media does a fair job of representing the struggles that parents face today? Why or why not? How does family life in TV shows like this one compare to your own? Which shows portray the most realistic families?