On Wednesday afternoon, One Day at a Time showrunner Gloria Calderon Kellett tweeted that she had just left a meeting with Netflix where she learned some troubling news about her original series: it was once again in danger of being canceled. Why? Low viewership.
Kellett’s full tweet read: “NEWS: Met with @Netflix about @OneDayAtATime S4 / They made clear that they love the show, love how it serves underrepresented audiences, love its heart & humor, but...we need more viewers. They'll decide soon. / I wish I felt more confident / WHAT CAN YOU DO? Tell friends to watch!”
Within a day, fans and celebs alike rallied to Kellett's side. So much so that #RenewODAAT was trending Thursday. And now, here I am, telling you to watch the damn show!
If you’re not familiar with it, One Day at a Time is a remake of the popular 1970s sitcom by the same name that followed a white divorced woman raising her two daughters. Kellett turns the show on its head and gives it a Latin twist — a divorced Cuban-American mother and war vet raising her family in the early 2000s. At its core, it follows the traditional sitcom structure: conflict, funny banter, and resolution all wrapped neatly within 20 minutes. But it’s so much more than that.
As a Cuban-American myself, I have a few issues with the show — how the entire primary cast is played by Puerto Ricans and a Colombian, rather than actors of Cuban descent, for one — but you can’t win ‘em all. The bigger picture is more important here, and that is representation.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve watched this show and been left in tears — both from laughing and from crying. Lydia, played by the oh-so-talented Rita Moreno, reminds me so much of my own Cuban grandmother who passed away in 2007. She nails what it’s like to be a Latina grandmother right down to the mannerisms (we Cubans, in particular, have a tendency to speak with our hands).
My own mother, who came to Miami from Cuba when barely a teenager, often walked by the television while I was watching the most recent season, its third, which dropped earlier this month. Although she would constantly comment, “No
My dad, on the other hand, is a man of few words. He would hear the Spanglish emanating from the TV, turn his head, and sit quietly next to me for a full episode or three.
We Cubans are
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Plus, the storylines tackled are conversations worth having. There’s the character of Elena coming out as gay to her Latino family; Alex being caught dabbling in drugs (it was just marijuana, but for any Latina mom, that’s enough to set her off); and even anxiety and depression. These are topics that are hard for Latinos to talk about, but One Day at a Time puts them out there and forces you to stop and think.
We need more of this on our televisions.
Give yourself a break from Friends and let One Day at a Time be your in-the-background-while-you-do-chores show for a while, I beg you.
And despite the show taking place in California, there’s