Break out your best thank you notes because Netflix deserves some serious gratitude right now. According to Deadline, Netflix renewed One Day at a Time for Season 2, and this incredible news deserves to be celebrated. The series following a Cuban-American family is one of TV's best comedies, and now that it is definitely returning for a second season, you have plenty of time to see what you have been missing out on.
Based on Norman Lear's '70s classic of the same name, One Day at a Time joins NBC's The Carmichael Show in making multi-camera sitcoms relevant again. In its first season, the comedy tackled PTSD, navigating the veteran affairs office, religion, immigration, coming out, and modern feminism. The show did all of this while grounding the story in Cuban traditions, offering up Cuban-Spanish dialogue sans onscreen translation, and still being a hilarious sitcom with universal appeal.
One Day at a Time feels like a throwback, but there's truly nothing else like it on TV. Rebooting classic shows is always tricky, but somehow, series creators Mike Royce and Gloria Calderon Kellett not only made the new incarnation of the series feel fresh, they found a way to make it one of the most essential shows currently airing.
By showcasing three generations of Cuban-American women, One Day at a Time explored multiple viewpoints and visions of feminism throughout the first season. As the family's eldest member, Rita Morena gave a standout performance as Lydia, a first generation immigrant who is a caretaker by nature. She never holds her daughter or granddaughter back, but she present them with a different idea about what being a woman means to her.
The episode in which Lydia advises her daughter, Penelope, and granddaughter, Elena, to try a more stereotypical feminine approach to their problems dealing with misogynists in "Bobos and Mamitas" was fascinating TV. Not only did it lead to both younger women exploding in anger at the respective men trying to hold them back, it also revealed a truth about why Lydia never allows her family to see her without makeup. Three vastly different types of feminism were on display, and they were all given their due onscreen.
One Day at a Time is the rare show capable of balancing hard truths with authentic comedy. Watching Elena try desperately to hide her friend Ramona after Ramona's parents are deported led to a frank discussion about illegal immigration and the ways in which the policies surrounding immigration in the U.S. are deeply flaws. Still, the show can just as easily drop one-liners that will make you grin and family moments that will warm your heart.
The comedy uses a traditional sitcom format to tell stories other series are afraid to tell. Knowing One Day at a Time has a home on Netflix for at least another 13-episode season is a relief. The Alvarez family still has so much more to say, and I cannot wait to hear them out.