6 Reasons to Watch One Day At A Time

One of my favorite things to do while procrastinating is to start new TV shows. Oftentimes, I end up abandoning these TV shows since I often don’t actually have time to keep up with them. Sometimes though, I do find a gem that I’m willing to keep watching, and that’s when my productivity really suffers. One such gem is Netflix’s One Day at a Time, a reboot of the 1970s sitcom of the same name. The Netflix version features a Cuban-American veteran named Penelope Alvarez as she tries to balance a full time job as a nurse, her two kids, Elena and Alex, and her vibrant mother, Lydia. On the surface, One Day at a Time is a sweet, but basic sitcom, however, the show has tacked major issues in almost every episode of its two season run without losing any of its signature humor and heart. Here are 6 reasons why One Day at a Time should be your new favorite show.

1. It’s so diverse

It’s rare to see a Latinx family on mainstream TV, particularly when the show is centered around them. There are only two white characters (their super, Schneider, and Penelope’s boss, Dr. Berkowitz who we’ll get to in a bit), so we get to see this Cuban family, which is not presented as the model for what all Cuban families look like, interacting and spending time with one another. Spanish is spoken a lot throughout the show and the subtitles rarely translate it, but it is easy to understand even if you only have an elementary background in Spanish. Other characters include Elena’s Mexican best friend, Carmen, Penelope’s ex-husband, Victor, and Penelope’s friends (who are also veterans), Jill and Ramona.

2. Seriously, the characters are the best part

It’s also super rare to see such multifaceted characters in a half hour sitcom. Schneider, a Canadian immigrant, is super rich and super privileged, but is also open about his struggles with addiction and how much he loves spending time with the Alvarez family. Dr. Berkowitz is a Jewish doctor and while he’s awkward and nervous, he is also sweet, attentive, understanding, and would do anything for the Alvarezes. In order to truly understand Lydia, Penelope, Elena, and Alex, you definitely have to watch the show, but each character is so full of life and so real that I want to adopt them all.

3. The show tackles big issues

More and more, sitcoms are beginning to take on the issues that would realistically affect their characters, so for the Cuban American Alvarezes, this includes immigration policy and racism. But One Day at a Time doesn’t stop there; the show discusses what it’s like to be an injured and mentally ill veteran (in many different ways), how different people struggle with addiction, what it’s like to be a single parent, racism in the Latinx community, and much more. There’s even a bittersweet (but absolutely lovely) coming out arc and the introduction of a nonbinary character in the second season!

4. It stars the wonderful Rita Moreno

Rita Moreno, who plays Lydia, is an absolute legend and an EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony) award winning actress, which means she’s an amazing actor. You may recognize Rita Moreno as Anita from West Side Story (or any of her million other projects) and she’s just as feisty and confident in One Day at a Time and will keep you hooked on the show!

5. Everyone is so adorable

Look at them! How could you not love them?

6. It’s streaming right now on Netflix

You don’t need to wait for it to show up on TV, you don’t have to sit through any commercials, it’s just one easy click away. So what are you waiting for? With representation of people rarely seen on television and some of the sweetest and most heartbreaking storylines I’ve ever witnessed, One Day at a Time is the ultimate binge-watching guilty pleasure!

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