Yet, this particular show stands out from the regular comedy crowd, and here's why.
Strong Female Protagonists
Meet Christy (Anna Faris), a recovering alcoholic and single mother, trying to keep her head above water by slaving away as a waitress, raising two children and staying sober. However, life hands her yet another curveball when her estranged mother Bonnie (Allison Janney), who is also a recovering addict, turns up needing a place to stay.
Their relationship has always been fragile, and throughout the series we’re taken along an emotional rollercoaster ride of a family healing old wounds and overcoming life's obstacles. And in between the laughs, there are moments that will tug at the heartstrings of anyone who has ever experienced a difficult child/parent relationship.
Tackling Big Issues
Delicate yet complex issues surrounding addiction, teen pregnancy, depression, sexual abuse and living on the poverty line hardly lend themselves to comedy, and you'd be right in thinking that these storylines belong in an episode of Law & Order: SVU. By now, you may even be wondering "Huh? Where's the humour?".
But don't get it twisted. The characters may be flawed, but the way they handle their difficult circumstances is portrayed in a light-hearted, humorous way. Like in Christy’s AA meeting when she says: "some mothers teach their daughters how to bake, mine taught me how to beat a cavity search and still feel like a lady!".
Or when she reluctantly joins Bonnie for lunch, and Bonnie asks the waiter "What can you recommend for a mother and daughter who are reconnecting after a long, angry silence?".
Oh, and all the times she sits in her car reciting self-love affirmations voiced by a middle-aged guy.
See? Funny! And somewhat relatable.
All sitcoms are clever in their own unique way, but most don’t focus too much on character development. Both leads in Mom are beautiful messes, with their struggles past and present, and their journeys are about growth. Growing to be better mothers, to be better role models, to beat their addictions.
Progress and healing aren’t always linear, and just like the AA groups Christy and Bonnie attend with other fellow addicts, there are good days and bad. Five steps forward and three steps back. Addict or not, you’ll gain a real sense of empathy in watching their stories unfold. But rest assured, you won’t feel bad about giggling along with them.