This past Tuesday, NBC's Parenthood returned for a second season. A surprise hit after a rocky start, the show has already received a 22-episode order, making this season a full one for the charming family drama. Season one ended with some heavy issues, and while those things have not gone away, the season premiere avoids being too depressing or melodramatic.
The funniest moment in this week's episode came when young Sydney (Savannah Paige Rae) asked her parents, Julia (Erika Christensen) and Joel (Sam Jaeger), if she came out of a vagina, and if they did, too. She became obsessed with the whole concept of where babies came from. I thought it was just an amusing couple of scenes as the couple awkwardly tried to explain things to their daughter, but the plot then developed into Julia's desire for another child, and Joel's reaction against the idea. It's writing like this that elevates Parenthood above other shows in the way they manage to seamlessly intertwine the comedy and the drama.
The most moving scenes came from Hattie (Sarah Ramos), who seems to be leaving behind the rebellious phase she went through last season. After knocking the mirror off her parents' minivan while her mother, Kristina (Monica Potter), was trying to teach her to drive, Hattie really stepped up and handled the situation with her mother in a surprisingly mature way. A few minutes later, she stepped up and helped out her brother, Max (Max Burkholder), who was upset that his cousin wasn't able to attend a sleepover. Hattie is certainly going to be an interesting character, already showing depth, and I hope that despite the very large cast, the show continues to follow her when she inevitably goes off to college.
Speaking of the missing cousin, Crosby (Dax Shepard) is having a tough time being all the way across the country from his son, Jabbar (Tyree Brown), and girlfriend, Jasmine (Joy Bryant). I'm sure this will be milked for awhile, but Jasmine and Jabbar have to move back to town soon. Jabbar was in almost the entire first season, and this year has been upgraded to series regular. Jasmine also remains in the theme song, so I'm assuming that means they will end up back with Crosby. But that resolution can't come soon enough for me.