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 Mother Up is written by the folks behind Family Guy, and it shows. Both take pleasure in tasteless jokes about sex, drugs, religion, race, and many other sensitive topics. Viewers can expect to hear rough language as well, including threats to "kick ass," references to perverse sexual practices, and the like. Main character Rudi also smokes on-screen and is frequently shown holding and drinking a martini-like cocktail. Other characters, including a small child, are pictured with drinks. In one episode, kids accidentally ingest alcohol and then vomit; this is played for laughs. The main character professes to be a great mother but then sends her peanut-allergic son to school with a peanut bar and threatens to offer both her children for sale on eBay -- again, all played for laughs.
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What's the story?
The theme song says it all: Eva Longoria's Rudi "used to be queen of the music scene, Cristal, Prada, and limousines," but now she's "stuck here in suburbia" and forced to MOTHER UP. Her husband took a flyer when she lost her job at Mass Exploitation record, and now she's Mr. Mom, except without the "mister." Children Steve and Apple, raised by nannies, are bewildered by Rudi's new absorption in their lives, but they're willing to give her a shot. Less open-minded are the cadre of judgmental super-moms who inhabit her neighborhood. Rudi's making a splash, and maybe not such a good one. But at least she's trying.
Is it any good?
Family Guy for ladies sounds like a great thing -- after all, the long-running cartoon show is popular and funny, but, with its coarse humor, not all that appealing to women in general. The unfortunate problem with Mother Up is that it's not all that funny and relies on tired tropes for its comedy. Of course the leader of the super-mommies is a blonde harridan who's just mean to Rudi because she's jealous and who uses kids' birthday parties and swim lessons as her battlefield. Of course Rudi is a hard-edged career woman who finds out she has a secret soft spot for her kids. Of course, said kids are personality-free plot devices who conveniently disappear when the adults are talking.
Wouldn't it be nice to see a show about and for women in which the women supported each other instead of competing? There's plenty of comedy to be mined from the stay-at-home mom world (any SAHM could tell you that), but it's not on display in Mother Up.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about which audience Mother Up is trying to reach. Is it meant for young people? Older people? Moms? Dads? Men? Women? How can you tell?
Mother Up is written by the same person who writes Family Guy. Does that surprise you? Do you see similarities between the two? What about differences?
Is the audience supposed to like or empathize with Rudi? What gives you this idea?