On the premiere night of Crowded, a show that depicts life in a multi-generational home, NBC decided that the ‘Pilot’ did not have enough random sex talk between daughters and their mom, parents smoking pot stashed by the daughters in the playroom, and granddad telling his son that “you love your children, you don’t like them.” No, the network went on to run a second show to give audiences a full hour of this stuff.
In the second episode ‘Present Tense’, Mike (Patrick Warburton) and Martina (Carrie Preston) are trying to spice up their sex life, but the never-ending presence of their grown daughters is cramping their style. After four years of an empty nest, they are re-adjusting to life with others in the house. Along the way, daughter Stella (Mia Serafino), the aspiring actress, says goodbye to her overnight guest after introducing her to the family. She kisses her, lesbian-style. Martina walks in as this is happening and the only thing she mentions is that her daughter has cut her hair, not the fact that apparently her daughter is now a lesbian.
When Mike asks Stella if she’s a lesbian, she says no, not necessarily. Sexuality is fluid now and “just because I slept with a girl doesn’t mean I’m a lesbian.” Then Stella narcs on her mom about a dip into the lady pond that Martina told her about from her own college days. You know, because they are friends, not parent and child. Mike is surprised, as this story is news to him. Hilarious, right?
An interesting note among all this free-spirited liberal feel good pap – Grandpa Bob (Stacy Keach) is a conservative guy! When Bob asks Mike if he understands why his daughter believes in fluid sexuality, Mike answers, “Democrats?” Bob says, no, it is the “everything you do is great” parenting style in the house. Also, when Mike goes to Bob for advice on how to get feisty with Martina with a full house, Bob asks if the hippie commune is a problem at his house. Mike asks, “You miss Nixon, don’t you?” to which Bob replies, “Every day.” LOL!
The story goes on. Martina later confesses to her daughters that she and Mike are “out of synch” and trying to spice it all up. The girls suggest mom get a piercing so she’ll look young. Yes, Martina actually buys that theory and goes to get her nose pierced. Bonus: Martina and the girls walk in on Mike looking at porn on the computer when they arrive home.
So, if a show that centers on raunchy sex talk between parents and grown daughters is your idea of a swell show, this is your spot. If, like me, you only really like Patrick Warburton because of his dry humor neatly placed among the lameness, then this show is watchable. It’s just not funny.
Stella: She's completely freegan, has a sick Instagram, and she knows Drake.
Grandpa: I don't know if those are positive or negative qualities.
Jessica: Nice to meet all of you. Stell, I got to bounce.
Stella: Okay, bye, Jess.
Martina: Oh, my God! You cut your hair!
Mike: So, what, you're gay now?
Stella: Dad, just because I slept with a girl doesn't mean I'm a lesbian.
Mike: Doesn't it, though?
Grandpa: You know whose fault this is?
Mike: The Democrats?
Grandpa: Not this time. This comes from all that "Everything you do is great" parenting.
Mike: Why are you here?
Grandpa: Well, certainly not to see my granddaughter kiss somebody else's granddaughter. Come on, Alice, let's go.
Stella: It really is no big deal.
Shea: She's right. Sexuality is very fluid now. People don't adhere to specific traditional labels.
Mike: What's wrong with labels? That's how you know what stuff is.