Fuller House Review: To Be or Not To Be a Family Sitcom

I wanted Netflix’s new show Fuller House to be a good family sitcom that my boys can enjoy. It seemed a perfect set-up: 3 boys in the family who could do mischievous things (and learn some values as a result). I knew it would be a cheesy revamp, but I did’t have expectations for it to be anything otherwise. I loved family sitcoms, that rarity in today’s television. (The Middle, starring Patricia Heaton, is the only attempt in recent years that comes close to what I loved about them a  kid.)

I watched the pilot (which hurt, by the way–I was wincing from all the things good writers are told not to do…  Not trying to hate, just watching it as a writer because I’m a writer). I told myself, maybe after the pilot was out of the way, the shows might have plots and storylines. (And Stephanie might wear clothes that cover her assets). You know, maybe the pilot was really for we 90s kids who watched the original, to answer what we’d want to know.

fuller-house1

Well, the other episodes, so far, do have plots and are better than the pilot–but it’s still not for kids. One reviewer said the sexual innuendo and dirty sayings and double entendres would go over most kids’ heads, but no, I know my boys would keep saying, “Why did people laugh at that?” “What did that mean?” And they’d repeat it.

Also, the show is full of the tween characters and their friends rolling their eyes and showing no respect to adults because they’re so uncool. I don’t want my kids to think it’s normal to treat people of any age as if they are of no consequence and to be ignored or jeered at. (Hence, I avoid Disney Channel shows like the plague.) Nah, my kids don’t need a diet of that stuff. (And it’s a also reflection of the easy way out for writers. The only way to make kids seem like believable kids is NOT to make every one of them a stereotypical eye-roller. I see this kind of writing disrespectful towards kids too–I like seeing kids written as individuals, not just part of an indistinguishable pack of their peers. Kids are more than that. As a teacher who loved teaching middle school the best, perhaps this is a pet peeve of mine. When people say they don’t like tweens/teens it’s because they maybe do not know them beyond their group stereotypes…But I digress.)  I thought Netflix was bringing a family-friendly sitcom, but they didn’t. But it’s too bad though; the boys’ storylines are things my boys would laugh hysterically at–they rolled with laughter over the portion of one they did see.

Some make the case that the show was really made for the adults–for nostalgia. And I like a few things–the girl who plays Ramona, Kimmie Gibbler’s daughter, is a good little actress, and I like the Hispanic elements. The little boy playing Max is a show-stealer. I do like that some good parenting happens: that it’s for a kid’s safety for parents to make themselves aware of their kids’ locations, and DJ reminds Kimmie she still needs to be a parent even though she feels guilty that her daughter is from a broken home. The  best thing I’ve seen is the character struggles and growth of Stephanie in the first few episodes. But I don’t really have time in my life to watch a sitcom for nostalgia reasons. If it were family-appropriate, we might have watched the whole season and whatever more would be made, but as is, I’m not sure I’ll watch any more. So my review is just of a handful of episodes, I know. It’s not a fully-informed review. Rather why the show didn’t capture my interest to get through a season.

Too bad though–I’d looked forward to it for months. I’ve always liked Candace Cameron Bure; and in the show, she is really likable.

I’m sure many of you may disagree and love the show–I have some friends who binge-watched it on release day. If you do love it, what is your favorite thing?

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About Renee Lannan's blog

I live, write, teach and enjoy life from a place of hope and a belief in miracles from seeing first-hand the depths of redemption
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