Thursday, January 16, 2020

REVIEW: 'Everything's Gonna Be Okay' - Nicholas Steps Up as the Guardian His Half-Sisters Need in 'Seven-Spotted Ladybug'

Freeform's Everything's Gonna Be Okay - Episode 1.01 "Seven-Spotted Ladybug"

Nicholas' single dad has very bad cancer and he's going to die, soon. So, Nicholas offers himself up to be the guardian for his two teenage half-sisters. They already know not to put their heads in the oven. What's the worst that can happen?

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the series premiere of Freeform's Everything's Gonna Be Okay.

"Seven-Spotted Ladybug" was written by Josh Thomas and directed by Rebecca Thomas

Nicholas agrees immediately to being the guardian for his two half-sisters, Matilda and Genevieve, after his father tells him that he is dying from advanced cancer. There is no question about it in his mind. His father has some doubts though. He has put off this conversation for a long time. He is reluctant to share the news because he doesn't want to break the hearts of his children. They have all suffered so much already. Matilda and Genevieve's mother died when they were young. Nicholas was abandoned by his father when he was a teenager so that he could live this new life in America. Nicholas was eventually able to get to a good place with his father. It's still a big ask though. It's something that he is reluctant to ask of his son. Nicholas doesn't know how to be a father or guardian either. However, he understands that he is the best person for the job. He is willing to step up for his siblings. He isn't filled with animosity towards this side of the family the same way his mother is either. He only has love. That is apparent throughout this extended premiere. Nicholas can be a very selfish and childish individual. However, he cares about his half-siblings and doesn't want anything bad to happen to them. He is more than fine uprooting his entire life to be in America with them. He knows that his father has to be completely honest with them as well. This isn't a conversation he can just continually delay either. He has to be upfront because everyone has to prepare themselves. There is a version of this premiere that starts with the actual funeral. The father of this family didn't actually have to be seen. However, his pending death means he is much more open and frank about his life with the children he has raised. That may make him condescending and dismissive at times. He just doesn't care what others choose to do. He is dying and knows that these will be his final days of life. Others may be uncomfortable about that. However, he is surrounded by love. That is empowering. There isn't any suffering either. This is a story that highlights the family coming together no matter what. It's not about the ugly ordeal of this man's body breaking down and his family having to experience that. Instead, there is just a natural transition from all of them crawling into bed with him to his eventual funeral. Nicholas wants to present as the guy trying to honor his father's legacy. The siblings all have a reverence for what he meant in their lives. He was special and so considerate. He embraced Nicholas immediately for being gay. He helped Matilda overcome any potential issues she faced living with autism. They have the strength and resolve to survive in this brutal world. Meanwhile, Genevieve is embarrassed by her friends at school because they are typical teenage girls who don't want to be enlightened about life yet. That is torturous for her. That may alienate her from the rest of the family. And yet, these siblings are the only people who can understand what each other is going through. Sure, Nicholas needs to be hugged in order to be reassured about what is happening around him. Matilda can't provide that for him. However, she will dance with him. That's an experience this family can share together. It's spontaneous and actually rewarding. This premiere is full of exposition it needs to get out of the way in order to embrace the sentimentality it is striving for. It's a lot to handle. However, those big emotional swings work as well. Matilda's eulogy is genuinely funny. Nicholas and new boyfriend Alex have wonderful chemistry. Matilda and Genevieve both feel like teenage girls trying to figure out the world. They may all be dysfunctional. However, they have each other and that should be a good thing despite the drama this absence will now create in their lives. Of course, it'll be fascinating to see how all of this transitions to a traditional half-hour format. This premiere is unique by running long. The blend of comedy and drama has to be precise as well. However, Josh Thomas earned a lot of trust through Australian comedy Please Like Me. As such, the audience should have the full confidence that this will once again be a rewarding show that provides victories for its characters even amongst the more cringe-worthy moments of every day life.