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The Worst Week of My Life
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 this British sitcom -- which catalogs the many mishaps of an unlucky fellow during the days leading up to momentous life events -- includes brief nudity (a man's naked butt and a woman in lacy underwear), some strong language, and sexual references, but it's probably nothing teens haven't already seen or heard. Some potentially upsetting issues are played for laughs, like the death of a family pet (he's accidentally tossed into a cement mixer) and an unfortunate incident at a relative's funeral. But teens who can handle the content will get some chuckles at the expense of the unlucky characters.
What's the story?
British sitcom THE WORST WEEK OF MY LIFE chronicles the misfortune that precedes momentous events for Howard (Ben Miller) and his wife, Mel (Sarah Alexander). The show's brief seasons have only seven episodes apiece; each installment details one day during a week of multiple disasters that lead up to some of life's greatest moments. As the series begins, Howard and Mel are making the final preparations for their wedding day, which is only a week away. But just when everything appears to be coming together, Howard sends the plans into a tailspin when he upsets the intricate seating chart for the reception (forcing them to start over from scratch), accidentally kills Mel's family's dog by tossing him into a cement mixer, and is forced to make an awkward confession when Mel's father walks in on him in the bathroom while he's holding a handful of small, brown chunks over the toilet. (Don't worry, it's not as bad as you think.)
Is it any good?
The only real downside to this funny series -- which, in later seasons, follows Howard and Mel through events like buying a house and having a baby -- is its close resemblance to similarly themed movies. Specifically, fans of Meet the Parents will notice that a lot of the first-season plot elements appear to have been lifted straight out of the movie, including the unyielding curmudgeon of a soon-to-be father-in-law, a troublesome family pet, and even stars with nearly identical names (Ben Miller vs. Ben Stiller). If you can see past the parallels, you'll enjoy the show's amusing -- if at times predictable -- mishaps. Just make sure your teens are ready for the sexual references, mild nudity, and occasional strong language.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about handling adversity. Teens, how do you deal with difficult and awkward situations? Who in your life do you have trouble getting along with? How do deal with that? Can you think of a time when you had a really bad day? What happened? How did you react? If this show gets remade as an American sitcom (which may happen), how do you think it will be different?