The Washington Post

‘Welcome to the Family’ on NBC

Welcome to the Family

Thursday, Oct. 3, 8:30 p.m., NBC

My nominee for quickest and most punitive cancellation goes to this facile dramedy about two 40-something couples who must learn to get along because their teenage children — a boy who is a Stanford-bound valedictorian and a girl who is an unfortunate iteration of the clueless blonde stereotype — are suddenly expecting a baby and have decided to keep it.

Or perhaps they’re being forced to keep it, because they live in some parallel America in which Roe v. Wade has been fully reversed, thus reducing at least one obvious solution to the dilemma. (Which would, of course, cut the premise off right there; I understand that the point of the show is the pregnancy.) The truth is, these kids do live in a parallel America, the imaginary land of network television, which hasn’t found a way to talk frankly about abortion in the half-hour comedy format since, I don’t know, “Maude”? I’m not at all opposed to the personal choices made by the characters in “Welcome to the Family,” I just wish they’d had the choice to make.

The foregone conclusion in the pilot is galling, especially in the scene where the teenagers’ combative fathers (“Glee’s” Mike O’Malley and “Desperate Housewives’s” Ricardo A. Chavira) are seen chasing after the girl, believing she’s about to get on a rollercoaster. The metaphor is quite blunt: Save the fetus at all costs! (And forget Stanford!)

That’s my editorial carp, but here’s my review: What a limp and unfunny show; it’s just more Thursday-night clutter. Grade: F


Almost Human

Hank Stuever has been The Post's TV critic since 2009. He joined the paper in 1999 as a writer for the Style section, where he has covered an array of popular (and unpopular) culture across the nation.



Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read
Your Three. Videos curated for you.
Play Videos
Be a man and cry
Deaf banjo player teaches thousands
Sleep advice you won't find in baby books
Play Videos
Drawing as an act of defiance
A flood of refugees from Syria but only a trickle to America
Chicago's tacos, four ways
Play Videos
What you need to know about filming the police
What you need to know about trans fats
Syrian refugee: 'I’m committed to the power of music'
Play Videos
Riding the X2 with D.C.'s most famous rapper
Full disclosure: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1 ghoul
Europe's migrant crisis, explained

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.