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S06.E08: Aaron Brownstein Must Be Stopped 2014.11.13

After last night's horrific episode, it's definitely time for Parenthood to call it a day.  Kristina makes me seriously ill and the whole charter school story arc seems like something in an alternate universe in which, as the article noted above says, someone with literally no background, training or qualifications in the general education field, let alone the special needs area is able to get a license from the State of California and the City of Berkeley to open and operate a charter school? Hogwash!  In California, opening a charter school process is long and very expensive process which is closely regulated by the state.  I don't even know where to start in regard to Max and his horrible behavior which Kristina and Adam not only do not try to modify but, as happened last night, actually encourage. Kristina's actions throughout (like having Dylan at the house constantly) have proven time and again that she's unfit to run a school of this kind. Are we to believe that none of the kids report to their parents anything about the Max-Kristina show? I agree with many of the prior comments about how in the real world, the hostile,aggressive and demeaning actions by Max would have, regardless of his having Aspergers, led to serious consequences in any normally run school. What the hell are the writers trying to prove?  What point they trying to make, that anything goes because you're a "special" child?  Whatever happened to Dr. Pelican, the renowned expert on Aspergers?  Why hasn't he been a presence in Max's situation.  If the Bravermans could somehow pony up enough money to get through the charter school creation process, surely they could find a way to afford the person who could make an impact on Max. Do they not have any health insurance?  I doubt it. The show runners have really screwed this up and, even though I've watched the show from the beginning and have admired it, it's lurched from a pretty solid reality based foundation to insane flights of fancy. I'll miss certain aspects of the show after it closes out next week but I will not miss the Max-Kristine-Adam folie à trois that has dominated it down the home stretch.

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It was already extremely problematic that all of the Braverman men were allowing Max to think that if you area really really nice to someone, you might move up a "score" in the person's like-o-meter.  No. That is some "nice guy" bullshit. If a girl does not like you in a romantic way, she does not like you in a romantic way.  Either be her friend or be fine with no relationship at all.  You can't niceness bully someone into wanting to kiss you.

 

Amen to that.  Kristina actually read the situation correctly in the beginning, she did not want Adam giving that climb up the scale of affection crap, but then she went ahead and let Dylan hang out with the family.  She should have stuck with her feeling that Dylan would be no more than a friend.

 

 

Because Kristina crying and saying "I'm so proud of you!" after her son uses the copier for to create hate flyers, stalks a poor fellow student ignoring her wishes to leave her alone, fights a boy in the hallway and yells at the headmistress  - it's not appropriate.

 

I think it's even beyond inappropriate and veers way into dysfunctional, dangerous endorsement of Max's disrespectful, harrassing behavior.  He actually pushed Kristina during the confrontation, and she didn't deal with that, either.  As others have said, he is dangerous, and they're not dealing with that.

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Whatever happened to Dr. Pelican, the renowned expert on Aspergers?  Why hasn't he been a presence in Max's situation.  If the Bravermans could somehow pony up enough money to get through the charter school creation process, surely they could find a way to afford the person who could make an impact on Max.

 

They wouldn't even need to pay for it.  California has state agencies (Regional Centers) that provide therapies free of charge.

 

Why don't any of the other kids at the snowflake academy appear to be handicapped in any way?  I realize that emotional issues aren't always apparent, but from what we've seen, they look fairly normal.  No reason they couldn't do well in a public school.  Besides, there is no way I would send my child to a school where the headmistress is the mother of the most difficult child.  

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Everyone has covered the noxiousness of Max Braverman, Burdgeoning Rapist but can I point out that once again Crosby had a public meltdown and became belligerent when expected to follow some very basic rules? How many times have we seen that? Did he really think he was in the right? Of course he did. He's a Braverman and they are incapable of seeing anyone else's point of view. It made me sick to see him grabbing for his pot and yelling insults back at the people in line even while Amber moaned and pleaded for help. At least Max has a reason for his behavior, what's Crosby's excuse?

 

And any place paying $30 an hour for filing is about as legal as Walter White's car wash.

Edited by marceline.
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Honestly, I know this is extreme, but when Kristina was giving that "your creepy actions were so brave" speech, I was gettting shades of Dandy's mother on American Horror Story!

 

Also, if the show expects us to take Max's (and Kristina's) side in this situation and not Dylan's - that's some seriously effed up, rape culture-enforcing BS! A girl does not owe a guy her affections simply because he has chosen to zero in on her. She also does not owe him her romantic attention simply by virtue of the fact that she has hung out with his family twice.

Honestly, if I thought the point of this storyline was to show, from Dylan's perspective, how really and truly terrifying it would be to be on the receiving end of the affections some delusional Elliot Rodgers type when it was clear he was about to do something really violent, not knowing what to do about it and not having authority figures take you seriously...well, I would say THAT story was VERY well done! However, I don't think that's what they were going for!

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Also, if the show expects us to take Max's (and Kristina's) side in this situation and not Dylan's - that's some seriously effed up, rape culture-enforcing BS! A girl does not owe a guy her affections simply because he has chosen to zero in on her. She also does not owe him her romantic attention simply by virtue of the fact that she has hung out with his family twice.

 

This isn't the first time this show has taken that troubling stance. Last season Max set his sights on Ruby and Hank kept pushing her to "be nice" to him, completely ignoring how uncomfortable it was for her. 

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Someday, when the cops find a bunch of womens' bodies buried in Max's backyard, Kristina will be crying and telling reporters, "I never saw the signs! He was always such a good boy!"

That's the best case scenario. I'm afraid her reaction would be "Did you see how artistically the bodies were arranged? I'm so proud of my buddy."

 

Crosby and Amber were oh, so snooty about those jingle women in the studio. My, aren't we just above the common people now, hmmm? A recording studio being used to record ad jingles; don't these cat food people know that the Luncheonette is historical? (Sniff derisively) Gawd.

Not to mention Crosby was doing a shit job as an engineer, not even bothering to pay attention.

 

Honestly, if I thought the point of this storyline was to show, from Dylan's perspective, how really and truly terrifying it would be to be on the receiving end of the affections some delusional Elliot Rodgers type when it was clear he was about to do something really violent, not knowing what to do about it and not having authority figures take you seriously...well, I would say THAT story was VERY well done! However, I don't think that's what they were going for!

Part of my frustration with this was there is a legitimate sympathetic Max story to tell, if they just show him being rejected and really being hurt by that in a non-threatening, non-creepy way, as I think most autistic kids would be. I knew we were in trouble when they did the melodramatic "saw the girl he was into kissing another guy" instead of the more usual "got the I don't like you in that way speech".

 

In the opening, did it sound to anyone else like Nora said "I didn't do that" when Kristina was talking about the blue face? Then she said "I did these" about another part of the drawing? She was also looking offstage for her cue on the "Max has a girlfriend line". It's a good thing she's so adorable. :-)

Edited by Latverian Diplomat.
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Pretty much all I now about Aspergers I learned from All My Children and this show

I never watch All My Children but I can tell you this: if everything you know about Asprerger's (Autism, Asperger's is no longer a diagnosis), you can forget everything. They managed to get it all upside down, a couple of good things buried under the preposterous and the stigmatizing. Seriously, forget what you think you know. The show runner has an agenda and it is very unfair to all Autistics, you know, real people, human beings

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One thousand times yes to all the points that have already been made

 

I must have dozed off for a few seconds - It didn't appear as though there was enough time for Kristina to enlist the help of another adult before she ran out of the building to chase down Max  - she's so good at her job, there's no way she would have just left Dylan by herself to deal with the aftermath of Max's outburst - it's also obvious the school is wonderful because it sure seemed as though when the commotion died down the students were going to quickly & quietly return to their classrooms, no extra supervision needed - my eyes couldn't roll back far enough for that particular scenario!!

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Kristina needs to be the one who dies.  Her whiny voice makes me want to punch something.  And how she deals with her children is appalling.  Then Adam will actually have to get help for Max, who will be much better off.  

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I loved Jasmine in this episode, so grown up and doing what she needs to do to take care of my family w/o griping or tearing her husband up and down. I think my favorite line was her explaining that everyone will get their time to shine when it comes to their passion/love.

Jasmine is consistently my favorite Braverman precisely for this reason. It's like she's the only sane adult who has ever lived in the real world. Drew is also coming around. If you like to dance, or Russian Lit, or whatever, that's great, but hard to pay the bills with. It's not "selling out" to give yourself some financial security. Sure, I'd live to sit at home and write a novel, but I have to earn a living!

Edited by annlaw78.
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Why on earth was the only 2 options with Ruby was (a) higher a baby-sitter for the 15 year old or (b) have her spend the entire night by herself. The most obvious choice was © - have her stay at Hank's. I'm sure he'd be home well before midnight. (I didn't quite catch Hanks reasoning as to why he wouldn't be home, but it didn't seem to me like he'd actuallly not be home the entire night).

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Jasmine is consistently my favorite Braverman precisely for this reason. It's like she's the only sane adult who has ever lived in the real world. Drew is also coming around. If you like to dance, or Russian Lit, or whatever, that's great, but hard to pay the bills with. It's not "selling out" to give yourself some financial security. Sure, I'd live to sit at home and write a novel, but I have to earn a living!

 

Jasmine was a single mom holding down business before Crosby came back into the picture. She knows what needs to be done. She must look at this flaky family with the runs for mayor and the charter school and Sarah flitting from job to job and just shake her head.

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I think my comment about the word 'buddy' was written wrong. As an endearing word that it certainly is, (I have called my son Jonathan bud since he was a toddler) I have trouble with the writers of the show having EVERY SINGLE adult use the word with their kid. It just comes off as not genuine, but what is genuine anymore with this show?

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My biggest question about this damn show is, "What do the writers want us to think of Christina?"  Do they think they're writing her as this awesome super-mom who handles her terribly-behaved child well, and is a modern-day hero? Because she's a terrible mother.  Terrible.  She does nothing to try to help her son's social skills, re-enforces his terrible behavior, and ignores anything that takes her attention away from Max.  Are we supposed to think she's awful? Because I think she's awful.  And if they aren't writing her to be awful, then they are terrible writers.

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marny, I think we are supposed to sympathize with Kristina, and admire the great job she is doing with her challenged son. She also fought cancer, and had a midlife surprise baby and ran for mayor, she's a superwoman!

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Where did all those students come from all of a sudden.  It seemed like way more than 45.

 

And is the school staffed only by Christina and Chef Adam?  Apparently all the students have special needs - so why isn't there adult supervision as they wander around?

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Maybe the Braverman who is going to die is Amber's baby.

 

I'm beginning to think that the death will actually be Zeke, and Amber will have a little boy and name him Zeke.  Mainly because I don't think the writers are clever enough to come up with anything better.

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I'm beginning to think that the death will actually be Zeke, and Amber will have a little boy and name him Zeke.  Mainly because I don't think the writers are clever enough to come up with anything better.

Nah!  What will die is inane, sloppy writing and an arrogant sense that the viewers will swallow whatever drek the production team is willing to put on the air.  Good riddance!

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I think it's even beyond inappropriate and veers way into dysfunctional, dangerous endorsement of Max's disrespectful, harassing behavior.  He actually pushed Kristina during the confrontation, and she didn't deal with that, either.  As others have said, he is dangerous, and they're not dealing with that.

 

Kristina simply amazes me.  I don't pretend I would be the perfect parent, or that dealing with an autistic child would be easy, but I truly have no idea what the hell she is thinking with Max.  Your son suffered a disappointment and responded by throwing a violent tantrum, while simultaneously refusing to accept that the girl did not like him.  If Kristina hadn't intervened what was going to be next?  Max tells Dylan if he can't have her, no one can?  That seemed entirely plausible.  Instead of having a serious discussion with Max about accepting disappointment and respecting other people, she freaking tells him how proud she is.  Maybe if he had tied Dylan up and locked her in his basement, Kristina would have made him a cake.  It just honestly made me angry.  Kristina is actively harming her kid, and the only solace I might have with all this is if she throws Adam's stupid scale of affection back in his face.  

 

I also kind of wanted to tell Drew that while his heart is in the right place in wanting to care for his sister, his best case scenario is he graduates in two years with a good job.  So until then he isn't going to be offer much to Amber in the way of money, so maybe he should take it down a notch.

 

I also sympathize with Crosby, but I wish someone told him to grow up.  His wife is being extremely supportive in a difficult time, and found the most high paying filing job in all of California.  Instead of feeling sorry for yourself, simply try to appreciate her.  

 

Finally, I just can't care about Hank.  I'm glad he acted his age and broke up the party, but it was slightly pathetic that he had to work himself up to basically be a decent parent.     

Edited by txhorns79.
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Kristina is actively harming her kid, and the only solace I might have with all this is if she throws Adam's stupid scale of affection back in his face.  

 

 

Finally, I just can't care about Hank.  I'm glad he acted his age and broke up the party, but it was slightly pathetic that he had to work himself up to basically be a decent parent.     

She's also putting other children at psychological and potentially physical risk.  There have been so many examples of why Kristina is the last person on earth to be running this school but in the mythological Braverman galaxy,  she's perfect for the job.  I understand taking some dramatic license but the show has veered far off the track and,  hopefully it's not influencing peoples' thoughts about Aspergers, special needs kids, charter schools and just plain old good parenting.  Early in the show's run I can recall many in the know admiring how it handled the issue of Aspergers and autism.  I wonder what they would say now.

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I confess, I call my son Buddy on occasion... don't judge me! (For the record, at the age of 2.5 my little one seems to have more impulse control than Max).

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The following scene was cut from the final version for time:

Following the school incident, Kristina calls Adam to tell him what happened...

Kristina: Adam, thank God you answered.  I wish you were here.  Where are you anyway???  I know you are not at the school and not at your actual job...

Adam: Never mind that, Kristina, you have to calm down and tell me what happened.

K:  Max had an incident at school.

A: What kind of incident?

K: Well, Aaron Brownstein started a fight with Max.  Max very bravely expressed his feelings for Dylan and Dylan meanly rejected him and hurt Max.   Then Max ran out of the school into traffic and I ran after him and I glared at and told off drivers who didn't stop for me even though they had the right of way.

A: Oh, my God, Kristina, I am so sorry I wasn't there for you.  Doesn't Dylan know that she is required to return Max's feelings because he is so special????  Whose Aaron Brownstein anyway?  What did you do?

K: Dylan's a bitch, Adam.  I told you she was.  I don't know who Aaron is, he must be a student, I never met him before today as he isn't Max.  First, I glared at Dylan and then I was going to suspend Aaron and Dylan, when one of the students, I have no idea what his name is, said I couldn't do that because he had the whole incident filmed with his cellphone.  He said his father was on the school board.  He was blaming Max, can you believe it????

A: Did you tell the kid that only Max is allowed to use a cellphone at the Academy, because he has special needs and he had to erase the video?

K: Of course, Adam.  But he wouldn't erase it.

A: Well, I will call Julia and get her to sue the kid for unlawful videotaping, Aaron for assaulting Max, those drivers for assaulting you and, and Dylan for something too, let Julia figure it out.  You know Julia isn't busy with anything in her own life and she is a Braverman afterall.

K:  That sounds great.  You know, this is all your fault for not being here?  And Dylan and Aaron...

A: And Crosby, it is always Crosby's fault when things go wrong.

K: Of course it is Crosby's fault.  That goes without saying.  And don't forget about Haddie.

A: I always forget about Haddie, but it is her fault, of course.  Nora, too?

K: Everybody forgets about Haddie.  Yes, Nora, she interrupted Max when he interrupted her earlier in the day, can you believe that?  You would think she would know better by now that Max comes first.  But let's be clear, none of this is Max's fault.

A: Of course not, Kristina.  Everybody needs to understand that he is special and he was very brave and wonderful to do what he did.  We have a lot to be proud of...

K: Yes, we certainly do.  I should write a book in my spare time about raising a child with Asbergers.  It will only take a month to write.  It will be a bestseller, everyone will want a copy because I am a Braverman.

A: Of course they would, Kristina, you are a wonderful writer.  You can get Amber to be your editor.  She is qualified, even though she doesn't have a college degree, as she is a great writer and a Braverman, too.  You can call it "Parenthood" and then we can option the rights to turn it into a movie and maybe even a TV show.  You have a lot to teach the world.  I will come right home now from wherever I am, to be with you and Max to make sure he is alright.

K: Good.  In the meantime, I will buy Max another dog he wont be interested in, that we don't need or take care of, as a reward.

A: We have a dog?  Anyway, sounds good.  I love you, Kristina.  You are a wonderful mother, school administrator and wife.  You are selfless....

K: I love you, too, Adam.  You always know the right thing to say.

A: I do, don't I?  I really am always right about everything.  I am a Braverman.  'Bye.

Edited by Bazinga.
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While Adam's away on business, do the kids at the school not have lunch? Who's running the kitchen?

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The following scene was cut from the final version for time:

 

This deserves the PTV Pulitzer Prize.  Bravo!!

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Kristina simply amazes me.  I don't pretend I would be the perfect parent, or that dealing with an autistic child would be easy, but I truly have no idea what the hell she is thinking with Max.  Your son suffered a disappointment and responded by throwing a violent tantrum, while simultaneously refusing to accept that the girl did not like him.  If Kristina hadn't intervened what was going to be next?  Max tells Dylan if he can't have her, no one can?  That seemed entirely plausible.  Instead of having a serious discussion with Max about accepting disappointment and respecting other people, she freaking tells him how proud she is.  Maybe if he had tied Dylan up and locked her in his basement, Kristina would have made him a cake.  It just honestly made me angry.  Kristina is actively harming her kid, and the only solace I might have with all this is if she throws Adam's stupid scale of affection back in his face.

I don't think I can watch this episode.

The thing is, there are Autistic people who suck, simply because they are, after all, human beings. This show and Katims decided that it is a good thing for Autistics (and since he has an Autistic son, I would think he wanted to make sure stigmas and assumptions are corrected) to have one Autistic character with all the vices - which are not a privilege of autistics, anyone can have them.

Max is everything we already know he is and he is nothing at all like the majority of Autistics. The writers threw on the character everything, right or wrong, they have ever heard about autism and it is this mess. Max being rejected is very plausible. Autistics are rejected, every teenager is. But throwing a tantrum, and a very public one, is not very realistic. Possible, yes, but not realistic. He would have had a meltdown, an understandable one, and he would have been pacing and talking to himself, but not running wild into traffic. and this is inconsistent. He knows what is right and wrong, he knows danger, he would not change his M.O. because of a girl. and then they make him way too involved emotionally when he is not very emotional about his family. It is true that an Autistic teen could be too emotionally involved, plus hormones, which brings me to another inconsistency: Max has been planing this whole Dylan thing like a scientific study. He would more likely retreated and gone back to the books, plan again, and not give up his goals. 

Anyway, I am so sick of this narrative. I don't understand how Katims can allow this, with all the Autistic kids being murdered or the families actually expressing relief when they die in accidents, as if their lives is not worth living. It doesn't matter how much his son has accomplished, this type of popular uninformed perception will affect him. I call this bad parenting. and fuck Autism Speaks for having so much of a saying in the NBC shows.

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Something about Ruby has been bothering me, and it took the Particle to help me put my finger on it: She acts with her teeth.  Every expression she has, you can see ALL OF HER TEETH.  

 

Other than that, I can't really say anything about this episode because, with so few episodes to go, they didn't advance any of the major story lines.  I realize there's budget issues, but maybe (just maybe?) someone might have said, "Oh hey, you know, with those kind of budget constraints, we really can't make the show the way the show needs to be made, so we'll be content with the family dinner at Adam and Kristina's at the end of last season being the finale for the show."  Because this? Is terrible.  Really, really terrible.  

 

And, with said budget issues in mind, why are we spending so much time with guest stars instead of the main family? Hank, Sandy, Ruby, Dylan, now we're bringing back Mark Cyr.  Here's a thought: Cut down on the locations (personally I could do with never seeing Snowflake Academy ever again), focus on the four siblings, make reference to the very young children being "napping" so you don't have to show them on camera and TELL THE STORY OF THE FAMILY.  

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And, with said budget issues in mind, why are we spending so much time with guest stars instead of the main family? Hank, Sandy, Ruby, Dylan, now we're bringing back Mark Cyr.

 

That's what I say, way too much Hank and the gang.  We can see the foreshadowing that Sarah's not going to end up with him anyway, so why?  I am surprised at Ray Romano's acting ability, he is doing a good job, but it's just kind of irrelevant here.  If we are supposed to be seing another type of parenthood, fine but not at the end of the series like this.  And there is a funny montage of the faces of Ruby in the recap linked on the first page.  She's hamming it up for sure.

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After Max PUSHED Aaron and his MOTHER, words came out of my mouth unbidden, "Put that kid in a reform school."  But Katims wasn't done. Kristina glaring at drivers whose cars she ran in front of after running after the most special snowflake of all was bad enough. No, he still wasn't done. Then she tells her monster child that he is brave.  I am amazed at the ridiculousness of the writing on this show. We are definitely supposed to think that Kristina is super-mom.  I listened to the Afterbuzz TV podcast this episode and they all agreed that Max was brave and Kristina is awesome. It is apparently an alternate universe. I am not going to miss this show. But I already miss the show it might have been.

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I listened to the Afterbuzz TV podcast this episode and they all agreed that Max was brave and Kristina is awesome.

 

I can buy the idea that Max was "brave" in the sense that he took a risk in putting his feelings out there for someone.  However, you can't separate that from his reaction to the rejection.  It stops being "brave" when you show the object of your affection that her only choice is to do what you want her to do.  Max's behavior was, at best, scary.   

 

 

That's what I say, way too much Hank and the gang.  We can see the foreshadowing that Sarah's not going to end up with him anyway, so why?  I am surprised at Ray Romano's acting ability, he is doing a good job, but it's just kind of irrelevant here.

 

It is weird that in a show that is nominally about the Braverman clan, we had an entire plotline that involved not one Braverman.  I mean, heck, Camille got only two or three lines this episode and she's supposed to be a regular!   

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...I am beginning to resent terribly that we the faithful viewers have only a handful of episodes left, and we are being subjected to Ruby and her drunken friends, Max and his creepy stalking, Amber and her unplanned pregnancy, and no resolution is being accomplished about the core Adult Bravermans.  They got a gift of a final year to wrap this up well, and so far, it doesn't show...

I agree. Also, does this show have a completely new group of writers? What have they done to the "people" we know? Gone is the charm, whit, thought provoking moments, and interesting storylines of Parenthood. I don't get it! I realize there are financial/salary implications involved with this finale season but I'd rather not have this season at all than watch these filler stories told by unfamiliar characters and out of character Bravermans.

Edited by tinderbox.
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Does Snowflake Academy offer a hotel management program along with their 4 star culinary program?  If so, I think I had a glimpse of Max & Kristina's future...

 

A 2025 Trip Advisor review: "The Braverman Hotel is a quaint little inn on the cliffs overlooking the Bay.  It's run by a socially awkward mama's boy and his "Mother" (funny thing - we never actually saw Mrs. Braverman, but my wife swears she saw her rocking in a chair one night).  The proprietor has a tendency to creep around and can't make eye contact. He developed an unnatural attraction to a blonde female guest while we were there, but she disappeared before we could chat with her. The room was OK but there was a weird vibe in the bathroom...odd red stains on the tile. Affordable, great view, but don't take any showers.

Can I just say that this is sick and twisted and disturbing?

And that I'm going to hell for laughing at it, picturing grown up Max moving away and changing his last name to Bates.

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Kristina's "I'm so proud of you" convo with Max was wrong on many levels as several of you have posted. I think the most egregious error in her speech was when she pointed out that she was so proud-happy-surprised that Max was able to express his emotions. WTF? Max has been very forthcoming expressing his emotions all along. Almost every scene he's had, he has expressed:

Anger

Rage

Disdain

Impulsiveness

Impatience

Disappointment

Envy

Disgust

See? It's a virtual rainbow of emoting 24-7-365! Kristina just needs to hover her Mom-o-Copter a little closer so she can witness what the rest of us do.

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I don't know what After buzz is but are we the only ones that think this is crazy writing? I'm not just talking about Max and the robot he has beome , but every single storyline on this show is comical. And really, if their are viewers out their who think Max is brave and Christina is a wonderful mom , then I truly fear for this country! I'm going to watch again today just to lmao at the total rediculousness that is this show! Pitaful!

Edited by kathybgd.
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I am not going to miss this show. But I already miss the show it might have been.

 

Abso-fucking-lutely! The Parenthood I signed up for in the beginning would have handled the Max situation with so much more nuance and depth. I had hoped that Snowflake Academy would give Kristina the opportunity to interact with other children on the Autistic spectrum. It may have highlighted that a lot of Max's problems are the fault of his personality and her poor parenting; not his Asperger's. It would have been interesting to see the difficulties parents face when trying to alter their misguided parenting skills. Otherwise, what's the bloody point of this school? Why subject us viewers to such a stupid storyline in the first place? It's infuriating!

 

I can buy the idea that Max was "brave" in the sense that he took a risk in putting his feelings out there for someone.  However, you can't separate that from his reaction to the rejection.  It stops being "brave" when you show the object of your affection that her only choice is to do what you want her to do.  Max's behavior was, at best, scary.   

 

Exactly. Sometimes I think it's an editing issue. It would have been a great scene if she'd countered her praise with a lesson in how and why his behaviour was inappropriate. Sadly, no.

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Exactly. Sometimes I think it's an editing issue. It would have been a great scene if she'd countered her praise with a lesson in how and why his behaviour was inappropriate. Sadly, no.

 

I thought she was going to follow up her "I know you're hurt" line with something like, "but your behavior in there was completely unacceptable." But then she told him how proud she was of him, completely ignoring the fact that he bullied one student and harassed/terrified another, and I was reminded of what show I was watching. I wouldn't have minded the whole "I'm so proud of you" spiel if it had been acknowledged that while Max took a big step in expressing his feelings, he also crossed a lot of lines and needed to be disciplined for such. Instead Kristina assures him that he wouldn't get in trouble. And we're supposed to think she's a good mother and capable school administrator? How about no.

 

I felt more sympathy for Dylan in that scene than I've felt for Max in a long time. In fact, I'd love to see some follow up on how she's dealing with being at a school with a boy who tried to harass and berate her into being his girlfriend and said boy's enabling headmaster mother who gave her dirty looks for not returning her son's affections, because that's gotta be uncomfortable. If I was Dylan, I wouldn't feel safe in school knowing that Max is allowed to accost her at any time because his mommy is the headmaster and has prioritized his need to express his feelings over her need to feel safe in school.

 

Also, last episode when Hank shows up while Max is freaking out about not making it to Alcatraz, they have that exchange about liking people or whatever and Max says he only likes a handful of people… his dog, Hank, and occasionally his parents. He doesn't even mention Dylan, yet now he's devastated and heartbroken over her? Ok. 

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Also, last episode when Hank shows up while Max is freaking out about not making it to Alcatraz, they have that exchange about liking people or whatever and Max says he only likes a handful of people… his dog, Hank, and occasionally his parents. He doesn't even mention Dylan, yet now he's devastated and heartbroken over her? Ok. 

Great observation. Yikes. I guess he was taking Uncle Crosby's advice to heart--to wit, it's not about developing a relationship with the girl; it's about rounding those bases. 

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I felt more sympathy for Dylan in that scene than I've felt for Max in a long time. In fact, I'd love to see some follow up on how she's dealing with being at a school with a boy who tried to harass and berate her into being his girlfriend and said boy's enabling headmaster mother who gave her dirty looks for not returning her son's affections, because that's gotta be uncomfortable. If I was Dylan, I wouldn't feel safe in school knowing that Max is allowed to accost her at any time because his mommy is the headmaster and has prioritized his need to express his feelings over her need to feel safe in school.

Kristina needs to take some sound advice from a (marginally) worse mother than herself, and take off her wife apron and mom hat while performing her headmistress duties [/Gladys Leeman, President of the Civil Servettes].

 

Dylan is just a child herself, and a young woman at that.  For a variety of just general, decent-human-being reasons (setting aside Kristina's "professional" role), it's hard for me to understand what blinding sort of obsessive maternal love Kristina must have to not see that scene unfolding, and, yes, have concerns for her child, but also for the child at the other end of Max's fit.  Yes, Kristina, Dylan's a child, too.  She's not some Jezebel or Delilah or Bathsheba temptress that Kristina can blame for this -- and, as a woman, Kristina should know better than to fall into that trap, of making Dylan out to be some tease or whore who hurt her son.  Dylan's a child, and one that has been accosted, harassed, stalked, and publicly humiliated by her son -- in a place that Kristina set up to ostensibly be a safe haven for students who have been bullied, accosted, harassed, and humiliated in other school environments.  This whole plot was just terrible, and I wonder if someone ever piped up during the rehearsal process to suggest re-tooling it. 

 

What happened between Dylan and Max happened to both of them.  Kristina should know that, and take care of both of them. 

Edited by annlaw78.
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A part of me really wishes that when Kristina went to hug Max outside after saying what he did was okay that he would have pushed her away that resulted in her falling down or he would have struck out at her and some people on the street or in their cars took notice and called 911 that this boy was attacking this woman.  Max struck his mother during the first argument in school, yes struck is a strong word but that's the word I used here for what he did to his mother.  I really think that CPS needs to get involved here b/c to be honest I'm afraid for Nora.  Her cute teasing of Max at the beginning has me afraid that she will do that innocently and he will snap and hit her or worse.  I really think the only way that Max can be helped is if CPS gets involved and makes him, and the entire family, go to counseling. 

 

I really think that Kristina could be in a lot of trouble here b/c most of these kids that have seen Max's two times of acting out here...so far, would more than likely tell their parents and they would want to contact the school to find out what the hell is going on.  I know Kristina is the headmistress or whatever, but I would think there would be a school-board that would have to have meet and discuss what to do about Max as well as the headmistress who does nothing but protect only her child in this school.  I would think that Max would be expelled and Kristina put on probation or let go.

 

I loved Jasmine in this episode, so grown up and doing what she needs to do to take care of my family w/o griping or tearing her husband up and down.  I think my favorite line was her explaining that everyone will get their time to shine when it comes to their passion/love.

 

Frankly I'm surprised there are ANY students at Snowflake Academy. I mean you have to expect parents who would chose to send their children there are similar to Adam and Kristina especially after the school lunch brewhaha. I would think after a couple of stories around the dinner table about the principle and her son those kids would get pulled out of there right and left.

 

I love Jasmine and Crosby, but let's face it part of why she loves him is b/c she gets to mother him, so I don't think either one is acting out of character. Crosby has grown up some but considering where he started you can't expect miracles. I thought a lot of his temper tantrams about her working stem from being a product of his parents. It was such a Zeek reaction. Also I do give him props for actually realizing Jasmine has her own dreams and by supporting his she is putting hers aside.

 

Amen to that.  Kristina actually read the situation correctly in the beginning, she did not want Adam giving that climb up the scale of affection crap, but then she went ahead and let Dylan hang out with the family.  She should have stuck with her feeling that Dylan would be no more than a friend.

 

 

I think it's even beyond inappropriate and veers way into dysfunctional, dangerous endorsement of Max's disrespectful, harrassing behavior.  He actually pushed Kristina during the confrontation, and she didn't deal with that, either.  As others have said, he is dangerous, and they're not dealing with that.

 

The parenting  of Max is so bad. I mean he is such a stalker and Kristina does have two daughters. She obviously has NO objectivity makes me glad she wasn't mayor. ekk! I do think it is realistic that young adult Max could wind up in jail for stalking if not something worse. I think what bothers me most is knowing Katmis has an autisic child and wonder what this real life person will turn out to be. yikes!

 

Why on earth was the only 2 options with Ruby was (a) higher a baby-sitter for the 15 year old or (b) have her spend the entire night by herself. The most obvious choice was © - have her stay at Hank's. I'm sure he'd be home well before midnight. (I didn't quite catch Hanks reasoning as to why he wouldn't be home, but it didn't seem to me like he'd actuallly not be home the entire night).

 

This. That scene was so contrived. Using the word "babysitter" with a 15 y/o really? I mean she could just stay at Hanks apartment alone until he got home from work. Doesn't take rocket science. geeze

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Katmis has an autisic child and wonder what this real life person will turn out to be. yikes!

Not what the kid will turn out to be but how the world will see him. That's the problem with this narrative Katims brought from Autism Speaks, owned by the former bosses of NBC. I am pretty sure they have a lot of power in the network. They keep saying horrible things about Autistics, and forget that their children and grandchildren are going to face the damage done by what they are spreading - most of it not even the reality. Yes, some things are hard but far from tragic.

Yikes is right!

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Agree with everyone else re the Kristina/Max epic fail and how Dylan seemed needlessly persecuted by both.

  I'll just say I got annoyed by Amber constantly dumping on Crosby and Drew's attempts to have 'day jobs' in lieu of constantly building castles in the air. Someone needed to tell her that the 'don't give up the ship' deal was no good re the 'Titanic' after the iceberg. Oh, and why did Amber [and Crosby] have to go to that club so late at night to try to sell that group a Luncheonette gig? Couldn't they have texted or Skypped a good pitch? And if they were going just to sell the group the gig at their studio why was Crosby so insistant on bringing his stash inside?  Did he honestly think smoking his stash inside would have somehow helped tip the scales re them buying his and Amber's pitches?

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Save for Victor, Jabar and Haddie.

 

I would add Drew to that as well, though he does seem to be quick to throw himself on the cross when it comes to the family responsibilities he has self-appointed himself to take on.  I'm becoming more mixed on him.  I feel badly for him that he feels he has to be responsible for his sister, but then I lose some sympathy when he throws that in Amber's face when she wanted him to go out.  I mean, Amber didn't ask him to change his college plan to take care of her.  I don't think she's handling her pregnancy planning with aplomb, but that's ultimately on her, not Drew. 

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I feel like why Max is the way he is is because his parents are Kristina and Adam and they have raised him to be a spoiled, entitled brat.

You are absolutely right. That's why I call it Bravermanism. 

The thing is, this narrative has real implications for Autistics because many people don't really know what autism is and they start seeing Max as an example, and real lives can be complicated by that. This is not a hyperbole. It does, I have seen it. Kids bullied, called names and seen as entitled assholes 

The same happened with the movie Rainman. Do you know that, to this day, more than just a few people ask Autistic people they have just met if they can count toothpicks on the floor? Real story. And the subject of the movie wasn't even Autistic

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The Autism\Aspergers subject is not the only sensitive subject that Parenthood has not handled entirely well.  There were aspects of Kristina's battle against cancer that were off the mark, something I know from hard, personal experience. I won't get into too much detail but I couldn't help but laugh at Kristina being wheeled into the Operating Room in full make up, no head cover and not one IV hooked up.  That was mild compared to how some other things were portrayed.  For all of very good and realistic issues that that the show has dealt with well, there have been others that were bungled in various ways.  The situation with the Max, the school, Dylan and Kristina is clearly the most epic fail and the writers and show runners should be ashamed of themselves for airing such nonsense.

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The Autism\Aspergers subject is not the only sensitive subject that Parenthood has not handled entirely well.  There were aspects of Kristina's battle against cancer that were off the mark, something I know from hard, personal experience. I won't get into too much detail but I couldn't help but laugh at Kristina being wheeled into the Operating Room in full make up, no head cover and not one IV hooked up.  That was mild compared to how some other things were portrayed.  For all of very good and realistic issues that that the show has dealt with well, there have been others that were bungled in various ways.  The situation with the Max, the school, Dylan and Kristina is clearly the most epic fail and the writers and show runners should be ashamed of themselves for airing such nonsense.

You are right. The cancer story blunder began with the biopsy. I had one and there was no much wrong there, I can't even.

But none of the blunders affects how people are going to be treated - or endangered - by how they portray autism. It is serious stuff. And concerning because the message is not only explicit. Instead of promoting inclusion and acceptance, the show sends a message of how difficult it is to have an Autistic child, how stressed some parents must be and how awful Autistics are. Autistics are diverse and the show is one sided.

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One thing that REALLY REALLY irritates me about Max/Dylan/Aaron situation (the whole thing is a mess, but this one thing I keep coming back to) is when Kristina side eyed Dylan after the fight. As if this Dylan's fault when Kristina had an inkling of  what was going on and what would happen.

 

I agree.  Kristina essentially proved that Max should not be a student at Snowflake Academy.  She can't separate being his mother from being his headmistress, and it does not appear to be an option for her to abandon the school (presumably that will happen once Max graduates).  

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One thing that REALLY REALLY irritates me about Max/Dylan/Aaron situation (the whole thing is a mess, but this one thing I keep coming back to) is when Kristina side eyed Dylan after the fight. As if this Dylan's fault when Kristina had an inkling of  what was going on and what would happen. She knew why Dylan was constantly hanging out at her house but the LOOK she gave Dylan was..probably the rudest thing ever. It's clear Kristina places all of the blame on Dylan. It is scary to think of 'what if' Max had cornered Dylan alone.

I guess I shouldn't be surprised, given the truly nasty slut-shaming Kristina did to Amber after the dust-up with Amber hooking up with the guy Haddie had a crush on. And Amber was FAMILY -- a niece Kristina was supposed to love and whatnot.  I was really grossed out with Kristina's reaction, given that, come on, Kristina, what are the chances Haddie is even going to remotely care about this dude after high school?  Kristina should have had the wisdom and forethought, as an adult who has lived through the high school years and watched them recede in importance, for a bit more reasonable approach.  

 

Given how Kristina treated a 17-year old Amber, I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that she'd treat a random girl with similar scorn and nastiness.  

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