One Day at a Time (a remake of based on the 1975-84 show of the same name) is a sitcom that follows three generations of a Cuban-American family. It stars military veteran single (and newly-separated) mother, Penelope, who is now a nurse and trying to make ends meet; her headstrong feminist daughter, Elena; vain and sarcastic tween son, Alex; and her proud Cuban mother, Lydia. The wealthy landman and close friend of the family, Schneider, and Penelope’s boss, Dr. Berkowitz, also make an occasional appearance. Put simply, this series takes on what life looks like in both good and bad times, and how loved ones can help make it all worthwhile.
If I were to pick a word to describe this show, it would be ‘incredible.’ It’s funny, warm, and honest. It’s disguised as a typical family sitcom, but runs deeper than just that. It melds daily family misadventures but also touches upon multiple issues, such as what it means to be an immigrant, mental health, religion, and LGBTQ+ rights (especially when it comes to coming out). What’s even better is that despite every conflict that’s put forth, the episode almost always end with a positive note. If not, then it will all be wrapped in the next one, complete with a bow and all.
It also ticks all the boxes that makes a sitcom—sharp, witty writing; charming, multi-faceted characters; plot lines that seamlessly bleed into one another without a hiccup—with the added benefit that it also act as a social and cultural commentary, discussing subjects are extremely relevant especially in this day and age. I think that’s quite progressive.
Also, there’s a cheeky Hamilton reference at the final episode. You’ll know it when you hear it.
One Day at a Time, I feel, has the potential to be a timeless kind of sitcom. The one that everyone always brings up whenever they think of their favourite TV shows. Like Friends or Scrubs or Full House. It packs a huge, emotional punch without sacrificing its humour. You get to see every side of the main cast—bad, good and everything in between (even though, sometimes, one trait overlaps the other). Every episode starts strong, it keeps you hooked through the duration of it and you’ll definitely find yourself wanting more. Which was how I felt.
But don’t worry, Netflix has green-lighted a second season, so you can stay glued to your seat for a little while longer.
If you’ve made it this far into my post, then thank you for reading! Have you watched this show before? If so, what did you think? If not, would you consider it? Let me know what you think in the comments and I’ll see you in my next post.
Until next time,