One Day at a Time’s second season premieres January 26th on Netflix.
By Jaya Daniel
We’re in the era of remakes and revivals – some good and some bad; some welcomed and some not so welcomed. Netflix has been home to many of these revamps including Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, Fuller House and most recently One Day at a Time, returning this week for its second season. This remake centers on a Cuban-American family and shows the struggles of the day to day and the familial love that helps you get by, one day at a time. Penelope (Justina Machado) is a military veteran who is recently separated from her husband and lives at home with her mother Lydia (beautifully played by Rita Moreno) and two children. Schneider (Todd Grinnell) is the building superintendent, but he loves the Alvarez familiy like they are his own. Their lives may not be perfect, but it’s simple and sweet and a pure delight to experience.
The Netflix series doesn’t focus on gimmicks or quirky schemes to get by. They deal with real life issues and sometimes real life is funny, sometimes its not. Yes, there are hardships like anything else, but it’s the simple things that make this show so entertaining and relatable. The characters are real and full of life: a mother working hard to provide for her family; a teenage daughter who is vocal about her opinions; a pre-teen son who skates by on his looks; a grandmother who’s old-school and doesn’t apologize for it; and a friend of the family who makes himself at home.
There’s nothing overdone about the characters either, which is refreshing as it would have been easy to turn Lydia or Schneider into caricatures of themselves. They have flair and a contagious energy that will make you laugh out loud. It’s not exactly innovative, but it does the trick to keep you entertained. And Justina Machado leads the show with both her comedic timing and emotional range. She’s such a great guiding force for the show.