There have been so many thinkpieces on how we are in a “golden age of television.” The sheer amount of series that range from comedy to drama to sci-fi (and everything in between) boggles the mind. I know I have at minimum 90+ shows from cable and network taking up precious DVR space. That isn’t including the roster of very exciting and well-performing streaming shows that have been consistently rolled out over the last 5+ years.
Which brings us to the subject of one of those well-performed, consistently excellent streaming shows, Netflix’s own “Grace and Frankie.” The premise is hilariously over-the-top: acquaintances of 30 years find out their respective husbands (who are business partners as owners of a law firm) have been having an affair spanning 20 years. The ensuing episodes are filled with the fallout of Sol and Robert’s decision to come out and come clean and the ultimate effects on their wives, Frankie and Grace.
Grace and Frankie cannot be more different. Grace: uptight, fashionable, respectable, WASPy to the nth degree; and Frankie: earth mother, vegetarian, partaker of the ganja, artist who’s into karma. The forcing of these two polar opposites into the same household-after the debacle of their husbands leaving them…for each other-is nothing short of brilliant. The women are more different than Oscar and Felix, more repellent to each other than oil and water.
What ensues is a friendship based off of heartache and embarrassment (not an auspicious start). Although Grace and Frankie don’t begin from personalities of commonality, the start of their dependency on each other rockets from their ex-husbands’ disregard and disrespect. There is something to be said for two wronged women leaning on each other during a trying time of infidelity, and the show covers it beautifully.
That’s not to say everything is peaches and cream 24/7. Two very different personalities smashed together in trying circumstances will inevitably cause friction. Season one explored that while season two showcased the occasional flare up between Frankie and Grace.
This is the perfect show to binge over a week. It gives you laughter while hitting you in the feels. There are important themes of inclusion especially in the finale episode of the second season. Grace speaks passionately about being overlooked and being invisible as a senior woman. The show as a vehicle for two women in their 70s is a testament to what she was imploring.
If you haven’t watched “Grace and Frankie” I urge you to give it a try. It has made my roster of can’t miss shows. Cheers to season three next year!