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Next year is going to give TV audiences a ton of remakes of older shows, with more undoubtedly being secretly developed as we speak. The very first one to debut will be Netflix's modernization of the classic 1970s sitcom One Day at a Time, which unveiled its first full-length trailer. And, well, it looks different enough from the original that it's not entirely obvious why this is One Day at a Time and not a completely different series. But that doesn't meant it's bad. Check it out!
My first impressions of the new One Day at a Time mostly revolve around the humor being completely harmless, but it looks like it could be okay by classic sitcom standards. Instead of Bonnie Franklin raising two daughters in Caucasian Indianapolis Suburb, the update centers on a Cuban-American family, consisting of mother Penelope (Justina Machado) and her daughter Elena (Isabella Gomez) and son Alex (Marcel Ruiz). We also get the fabulous Rita Morena as Lydia, Penelope's mother, and I'm betting the best scenes of the show are between Penelope and Lydia.
On the original series, Pat Harrington, Jr. played the building superintendent Schneider, who was used for major comic relief, but we don't get to see anything from his new iteration. Dwayne Schneider 2.0 will be played by Todd Grinnell (Grace and Frankie), and I expected him to get a big doofus moment in the trailer, possibly with a big doofus mustache involved. But no.
Developed by former How I Met Your Mother writer/producer Gloria Calderon Kellett and former Everybody Loves Raymond writer/producer Mike Royce, One Day at a Time does at least retain the fact that a newly divorced woman is at the head of the household, and the remake adds a military background, which should offer some good emotional nuance for certain storylines. Though not necessarily scenes where everyone is singing Toni Braxton songs that are older than the children.
All in all, One Day at a Time's remake looks about on par with Full House's continuation on Netflix, Fuller House. The company obviously wants to create programming for the millions of TV viewers that still enjoy the escapism of heartwarming multi-camera sitcoms, and this was a great chance to put the spotlight on a more diverse culture. Should One Day at a Time prove to be a hit, we might expect to see more of Norman Lear's career peaks getting re-adapted for streaming. It's clear that this is just built on brand recognition, but if it's good, then there's nothing necessarily wrong with that.
One Day at a Time will debut its 13-episode first season on Netflix on Friday, January 6, at 12:00 a.m. PT. To see what else is hitting the small screen when the new year arrives, check out our midseason premiere schedule. And for all of the streaming giant's 2017 releases, head to our Netflix premiere schedule.