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What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Please Like Me presents heavy issues such as mental illness, suicide, and what it's like to come out as gay in a way that is both sensitive and humorous. There's lots of teen appeal in this Australian comedy, as charming main character Josh tries to figure out his life with varying results, but there's also lots of swearing ("bitch," "s--t," "f--k"), strong sexual innuendo, and occasional partial nudity (buttocks). Drinking (beer, wine, cocktails) also is frequent. Overall, though, it's a warm and hilarious journey that's worth watching.
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What's the story?
The Australian dramatic comedy PLEASE LIKE ME stars comedian Josh Thomas as Josh, an awkward almost-21-year-old who unexpectedly finds himself moving back into his family home. After being dumped by his girlfriend, Claire (Caitlin Stasey); coming to terms with his sexuality with the help of his roommate's coworker (played by Charles Cottier); and learning about his mother Rose's (Debra Lawrance) attempted suicide within a 24 period, his life is in shambles. Adjusting to living with his depressed mum isn't easy for the rather self-centered Josh, who has done his best to avoid drama and emotional moments as best he can. Adding to the chaos is his father, Alan (David Roberts); Alan's girlfriend, Mae (Renee Lim); his Aunty Peg (Judi Farr); and Ginger (Denise Drysdale), an inpatient at the hospital where Rose is receiving treatment. Luckily he has his roommate and friend Tom (Thomas Ward) to help him cope.
Is it any good?
The series, which is written by star Josh Thomas, successfully balances serious themes such as mental illness and suicide with the main character's intelligent and ironic humor. Issues faced by gay young people, including coming out to one's parents, are addressed with both humor and compassion.
The vulnerability and confusion that comes with dealing with these topics are expressed in ways that are both sweetly awkward and painfully honest. Viewers will enjoy watching Josh experience some growing-up challenges, some LGBTQ-specific and others universal. But it's Thomas' unique brand of comedy that just makes Please Like Me fun to watch.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about mental illness and how different people deal with it. How does Josh feel about his mother's suicide attempt in Please Like Me?
Families can talk about some of the differences between TV shows in the United States and those produced in other countries. Why can shows from some countries show things such as smoking while others limit the amount of violence featured?
Our editors recommend
For kids who love comedy
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