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 You're the Worst is a high-brow sitcom about two flawed people who begin an unconventional romance. The show is funny and charming but also contains lots of material that may give parents pause. The graphic sex, with nudity (no private parts are shown), thrusting, moaning, very frank descriptions of performance and sensations, and imagery of oral sex are about as realistic as you can find on basic cable. Two characters begin a romance by having a one-night stand, about which they have no qualms. Another character initiates sex with an old flame as a means of securing drugs for a professional client. Characters make jokes and references to drugs, including marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and prescription medications. They also guzzle liquor and beer and use the booze to justify their poor choices and lower inhibitions. Cursing is frequent and often insulting in a jocular way, such as when one character calls another's car a "sterile suburban piece of s--t." One character smokes cigarettes.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
In FX's wry, rude comedy YOU'RE THE WORST, Jimmy Shive-Overly (Chris Geere) isn't exactly a nice guy. The disaffected expatriate Englishman relocated to Los Angeles to chase dreams of fame; instead, he's getting $17 royalty checks for the only book he ever sold. For her part, Gretchen Cutler (Aya Cash) divides her time between babying unreasonable music stars as publicist for a major record label, having destructive romances, and begging acquaintances to drive her around town since her license was yanked after a DUI. The two of them are a mess. But, after they meet coincidentally at a wedding and decide to go home together for a one-night stand, they discover they have more chemistry, and more in common, than they bargained for.
Is it any good?
The idea of a couple getting together for casual sex and then sticking around for more is hardly a new one, so don't give You're the Worst a try merely for its opening gambit. Instead, watch the show for its very funny writing, courtesy of Weeds and Orange Is the New Black scribe Stephen Falk (on board here as show runner) and for the crackling chemistry between its two leads. As usual, material that could be schlock is lots of fun in the hands of good writers, actors, and directors.
It sounds like sitcommery to have Gretchen steal Jimmy's car in the pilot episode or to have a plot point center on the morality of actually spitting upon another's genitals mid-oral sex. OK, maybe that last one never came up on Friends. Regardless, everything comes together winningly, making You're the Worst a sure bet for adults who enjoy mature laughs with a dollop of hot sex. For teens, this is pretty mature stuff -- save it for the oldest and most sophisticated members of the family.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the way that the main characters get together. Do most relationships start with sex? Why, or why not?
There's a saying that, when characters in a film or TV show "meet cute," they get together by the end of a drama; when they "meet antagonistic" they get together at the middle or beginning. Which meeting style did Jimmy and Gretchen have? When did they get together?
On television, people generally get together despite something that stands in their way. What stands in the way of Jimmy and Gretchen's romance? Why are complicated romances more common on TV than simple ones?