'Hard times come again no more' on 'Parenthood'
April 20th, 2011
05:32 PM ET

'Hard times come again no more' on 'Parenthood'

As "Parenthood" wrapped up its season last night, the show was all about tying up some story lines while unraveling others for next season.

Last episode, Amber went completely off the rails. She was getting high at Julia's law firm with the age-inappropriate valet guy and not hiding it at all. Amber fought with her mother and drove off with valet guy, right into a drunk-driving accident.

This episode opened with Sarah getting the phone call and the Bravermans gathering in the hospital waiting room. Of all the family gatherings to lose patience, Max has a meltdown at this one. He's hungry and Adam promised him pancakes, which he wants right at that moment.


Adam tries to calm him down and tries to make it a teachable moment, but it doesn't work. Later Adam tries to explain empathy and the importance of being there for family. That might be a tough sell for any kid, but Max's Asperger's makes it a little more difficult for him to grasp.

Adam finally loses it at the skater boy who's been running his company. Corey has fired the head designer and installed one of his skater boy friends, without consulting Adam. Adam's had it with the kid. He goes off on Corey, saying essentially that he feels like he's there to clean up after him. That's a problem he's not going to have anymore, because Corey fires Adam, too. Maybe Adam should have waited until Corey was high on his special lollipops before he went off on him.

Adam's not having much more luck on the home front. He's still trying to come to terms with the fact his daughter is sleeping with her boyfriend. He has to tell Kristina he's lost his job, when she clearly has something to tell him. Max has lost an expensive retainer which Adam goes digging through the garbage to find. Instead, he finds a positive pregnancy test. He assumes it's Haddie's, and just before he goes after her, Kristina stops him to let him know they're the ones who are going to be parents again.

Amber comes out of the accident OK. She has a couple of broken bones, but no other injuries. Her doom and gloom attitude is still intact, too. Sarah can't figure out how else to get through to Amber about how her life is going, so Grandpa Zeek takes the reins on that one. 

He takes her to the junkyard to show her the car her friend wrecked. In the way only Zeek can, he tells her he understands she's upset about not getting into school, but it's time to suck it up and deal. He also tells her she's not allowed to mess with his dreams for his family by endangering her life. The man has a way with tough love. Later Amber apologizes to her mom for putting her through everything. I don't know about you, but I think Mae Whitman deserves some sort of award for her performances this season. Just amazing.

Love is still being tough on Crosby. He finally tells Jasmine about the house he bought for her, but she's still not giving him an inch. He eventually goes to see her, telling her he won't pursue her anymore, that he knows he messed up. Something finally works. Joel brings Jasmine to the house, where Crosby shows her what he and Joel have been working on. So, they're talking. Crosby may still have a chance at saving his relationship.

So, what do you think, about this episode and this season?

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Filed under: Parenthood • TV recaps

soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. john kimball

    I like "Parenthood" because it is well acted, has great story lines that mesh together, and it is not about solving murders, looking at people playing dead bodies and/or people doing autopsies (sp?) on dead bodies. It is a great show! keep it up and may it have many seasons. We need more drama like this on television.

    April 21, 2011 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Josh

      I have to agree, John. Well said. NBC needs more good quality shows like this one, and less of the Gong Show variations.

      May 17, 2011 at 7:31 am | Report abuse |
  2. theatreman

    As a theatre teacher of 40 years experience, I agree about Mae Whitman. Look at her–she has Elizabeth Taylor looks and the skills of some of our greatest actresses today. She should be a major star before long and as a director, I would give her any role with the confidence she would handle it bravely and honestly. Parenthood is a well-crafted, well written piece of theatre, not just a television sitcom or soap, but theatre–theatre is more about family than anything and this is so well written and acted I marvel at the entire cast. I just hope they can keep up the energy and the writers don't burn their brains out trying to keep up with this great ensemble of actors!

    April 21, 2011 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  3. food critic

    I love assburgers with extra cheese.

    April 21, 2011 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
  4. eatapeach10


    One of the reasons my wife and I really like this show is because of it's realistic portrayal of a child with Autism. I have 3 children, my youngest being the autistic. Not being a parent of an autistic, you will truely never understand the daily stresses and heartaches that we go through just to hopefully see some normalcy!! I pesonally say kudos to the producers of this show for having the guts to bring such a serious topic to the forefront of their show!

    I can see where you may think he's a brat, just many outsiders have looked at my youngest child, then at my older two and have asked me to my face: "what went wrong with your oldest one?"! I seriously felt like Adam on that episode where he knocked the guy out in the grocery store! It is THAT personal of an issue for us parents!!! Hopefully, you and others will look more into the issue. There are more children being diagnosed with Austic-traits today than there are cancer and lukemia patients combined!!

    April 21, 2011 at 9:21 am | Report abuse |
  5. LoVo

    I have watched Parenthood from the beginning – primarily due to Lauren Graham whom I ADORE. She was fabulous in Gilmore Girls and I have seen every episode at least 5 times (and I'm 52!). Parenthood as a great assortment of family issues that they portray in a very real way. Kudos!

    April 21, 2011 at 9:14 am | Report abuse |
  6. But I will never post here anymore. superhiro is too bossy.


    April 21, 2011 at 9:11 am | Report abuse |
  7. Trish

    This show is one of the best on TV – very real. The character of Max is so "real", it's unbelievable that the kid doesn't really have Aspergers as he nails it. I love other shows in this time slow – but I always watch Parenthood first. It is a great, very well written show. I hope it sticks around for awhile.

    April 21, 2011 at 12:41 am | Report abuse |
  8. anikitty

    This was an amazing episode and season. I cried so much. Although the play plotline was the weakest, it did lead to Amber realizing (for now) some hard truths.

    April 20, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
  9. ginger

    Have you ever known anybody with aspergers? Maybe you should research it a little more. I know people with Aspergers. I'm sure if you were the parent of a child with Aspergers you would more relate with Max and his parents. I love this show and all the personal issues it deals with. =]

    April 20, 2011 at 6:20 pm | Report abuse |
  10. faninABQ

    Is there anyone else out there who does not like this kid Max? He is a brat and i understand that he has this form of autism but there are limits for this bad behavior and the parents just let everything slide. It seems as though he is using it as an excuse now for acting however he wants.

    April 20, 2011 at 5:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mattimer

      You realize this is NOT REAL, right?

      April 20, 2011 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Pam

      That's the thing with Asperger's though. They just don't "get it". In many cases, they have very little or no empathy for others, have very poor social boundries/skills and are in their very own self centered world. It's not intentional, that's just how their brain works. It's VERY frustrating for caregivers and they are addressing it very well on the show. If the chracter annoys you and it's a fictional show imagine what it's like in the real world when that's YOUR kid and it doesn't stop when someone yells "Cut"!

      April 21, 2011 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |

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