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One More Try for “One Day at a Time”

Briana Noto, Staff Writer

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The second season of Netflix Original comedy show, One Day at a Time, was released on January 26th on Netflix. The show is based on Norman Lear’s 1975 series that has the same name. This time, the show follows a Cuban-American family, the Alvarezs, as the family of 4 navigate through life in Los Angeles. The family includes army veteran and single mother, Penelope (Justina Machado), her mother, Lydia (Rita Moreno), and her two children, Elena and Alex (Isabella Gomez and Marcel Ruiz).

One Day at a Time deals with some extremely controversial issues such as immigration, racism, mental illness, and LGBT rights, while also being light and funny. Of course, these issues are all over the news and social media so we hear about them a great deal, but this show puts them into perspective. The representation is what most people love it for. It makes underrepresented people feel like they’re important, and that they’re being heard.

One of the main elements that makes the show successful is the writing. The writers put enough representation and issue awareness in the script to get their point across, but didn’t make it the entirety of the show. This is important, because if they inserted too much, it might feel more like a PSA than a TV show. The writers also did a great job with character development, especially in Elena and Penelope.The characters don’t drastically change, but they shift in little ways through acceptance, and growth in self confidence, which we need more of on TV.

The acting on this show is absolutely brilliant, especially that of Rita Moreno and Justina Machado. Moreno’s witty one liners, over the top manner, and comedic timing are what make her character so enjoyable to watch. Her Cuban accent also adds to the comedic value, however ceases to be funny when a more serious topic arises.  Machado’s character deals with PTSD, anxiety, and depression and her acting accurately displays what that looks like for real people. She’s also a great comedic lead and falls into perfect time with Moreno’s character when the opportunity presents itself.

Overall, One Day at a Time is an extremely entertaining show to watch because of its uniqueness. This show should have many more seasons so that we can see more growth in the characters and it can continue representing the minority “one day at a time.”

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