TV Reviews

One Day at a Time is back: and its return could not be more timely

The heartwarming ensemble sitcom about a Cuban-American family returns to screens; a warm tonic to calm even the quickest of heartbeats.


Starring Justina Machado, Todd Grinnell, Isabella Gomez, Marcel Ruiz, Stephen Tobolowsky, and Rita Morena


To the uninitiated, the journey to One Day at a Time Season 4 was anything but straightforward. Dropped by Netflix for reasons yet to be formally and conclusively determined, the state of One Day at a Time following its third season was uncertain until it was rescued by PopTV, which also airs hit comedy Schitt’s Creek. Along with that comes some changes inherent with reworking a streamed comedy into a traditionally aired weekly comedy, complete with advert breaks.

However, all of that falls by the wayside in the current climate. Really, right now, it is more instructive than ever how successful the arts, including TV, are in helping us process life’s troubles. Obviously, as we face the coronavirus pandemic, those anxieties and worries are amplified a thousand-fold, but that does not erase the soothing analgesic quality that the arts can provide at all times.

The traditionally-shot three-camera sitcom, a revival of the ’70s iteration of One Day at a Time, this new version follows the story of a Cuban-American family. On top of being downright hilarious, it has successfully tackled multiple issues during its run to date, including depression, gun ownership, PTSD, racism, immigration, LGBTQ issues, and addiction – to name just a few. These issues are presented in a spot-on way, not compromising on the quality of the humour as it does so, really bringing to light these issues to a wide-ranging audience.

The return of One Day at a Time could not be more timely. The familiar nature of this show is like a port in a storm considering the uncertain times, as well as being downright hilarious. Since we’re all sitting at home, trying to find things to do, I thoroughly recommend watching One Day at a Time. The move to PopTV has done very little in the way of changing the quality of its episodes, though it has meant a shaving of about 10 minutes off each instalment, which merely makes the punchlines fly thick and fast throughout the 23-ish minutes on air. If you need even more convincing, here’s the article I wrote when One Day at a Time was cancelled, adding more reasons to view this heartwarming and life-affirming show.

You can stream One Day at a Time Seasons 1 – 3 on Netflix. Season 4 is available to watch on PopTV: a UK broadcaster has yet to be announced.

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