The New Normal
Airs: Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. ET on NBC
Episodes aired so far: 6
Get caught up: Free on Hulu.

A comedy created by Ryan Murphy and Ali Adler, with over-the-top characters, The New Normal pulls out all the stops to display the ridiculous nature of prejudice and the very concept that there is any such thing as a normal family. The show is filled with characters who are walking stereotypes, and uses those stereotypes to make the viewer realize just how silly they actually are.

Two gay men, one fashion-conscious and a little OCD (Bryan - played by Andrew Rannells), the other a quiet doctor (David - played by Justin Bartha) who seems barely out of the closet make an odd couple who seem to prove opposites attract. When the two decide to add a baby to their world, they hook up with Goldie (Georgia King), a young mother desperate to leave the mistakes of her past behind and give her daughter a new life. She comes with the baggage of a grandmother whose bigotry is so extreme as to be almost a parody, with every word out of her mouth either a racial slur or an ignorant and small-minded assertion about anyone who doesn’t fit into her worldview.

While The New Normal uses stereotypes to get laughs, it does so in such a way that you can’t help but see how ridiculous they are. It also has a way of digging deeper, and behind the stereotypes are people you can’t help but like for their strengths and their weaknesses. There’s something both hilarious and touching about watching Bryan connect with Goldie’s offbeat daughter Shania, a moment that makes it clear this show is about finding the normal in lives that are anything but. - Leslie Kasperowicz

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