Bizdaddy here. For those who don’t know, Bizmommy is preparing for medical school (now I’ve really committed her – it’s in print!) so I am helping out with the blog. I had the honor and privilege to do my first assignment as the representative of Bizmommy at a set visit to the new CBS comedy “Mom.” As you may have guessed, I was the only male in attendance.
We watched a couple of scenes being filmed and, the first thing I must cop to as a man watching a show called “Mom,” is that I laughed. A lot. The actors were great, the comedy cues were hit with precision and the writing was tight.
The show is about newly sober single mom Christy (Anna Faris) as she struggles to raise two children, a teenage daughter (Sadie Calvano) and a 9-year-old son (Blake Garrett Rosenthal) in a world full of temptations and pitfalls. Testing her sobriety is her formerly estranged mother (Allison Janney), now back in Christy’s life and eager to share passive-aggressive insights into her daughter’s many mistakes.
The comedy in “Mom” comes from its truthfulness. These are real moms with real problems, not sitcom moms with sitcom problems. Some of the subject matter will surprise the viewer with unexpected candor. That, in combination with the sitcom-esque cadence makes for a unique hybrid that is always good viewing. As they say, “It is funny because it’s true.”
Some of the cast and writers are moms and some are not, so they draw from varying experiences. The ladies talked to us very lovingly and honestly about their experiences with their moms (Gemma Baker’s mom is a Bishop!) and with their own children (Anna is a new mom). There was sage advice as well as guilt, all of which they bring to the characters and the show.
I think Allison Janney summed it up best (this is her first sitcom, by the way). She is not a mother to a child but certainly has treated her many wonderful performances over the years with just as much care and love. She said, “I’m not a comedienne, I can’t tell jokes. When I try to be funny, it doesn’t work but, when my intention is to do something and I do it – commit to it 100% – then it ends up being funny.” The actors on this show are real actors, not just joke tellers and they bring their experience and professionalism not to making this show funny but to making this show real. That is why it works and that is why, as a man who may not be their target audience, I think it’s very funny and going to be a great success.
In the talk-back you could tell they are moms on the show as much as they are moms to the show. It is that care and concern, that unconditional love, that is so important in the life of a child and of a television program.
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