Parenthood Review: Bandaids and Heart Attacks

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So many things on Parenthood Season 5 Episode 14 felt like puzzle pieces sliding into place.

It was a rather predictable episode, but that wasn't necessarily a bad thing. At least it appears as if we no longer need to play the waiting game with some of the bigger "what if" stories that have been floating around out there.

It surprised me that from the moment Kristina first met with the mother who was having trouble finding a place for her daughter in a traditional high school, I was absolutely certain she would start a school. It was so obvious as to be almost a distraction. It felt like the issues were pounded over our heads to drive the point home when it could have used a more subtle treatment.

It does give Kristina something to do, still keeps her engaged in the community and will give Monica Potter some meaty, plucky mom scenes to pad her next Emmy reel.

Crosby's mold story coincided just perfectly with the timing of Zeek's decision to give in to the love of his wife and put their house up for sale. If you regularly read my reviews, it's been my opinion that the Braverman house is as much a character on Parenthood as any of the actors, and I'd find it impossible for it to be abandoned.

Since Crosby and Jasmine just moved in, albeit temporarily, with the kids and their house is out of commission for months, I'm betting somehow a deal will be struck that they buy it. They were always my top contenders, given their growing family and small home. Somehow it feels as if Crosby loves the house more than anyone else, so it makes sense for him to be the next Braverman to be the head of the manor. Assuming things go my way, of course.

Zeek's appreciation of Camille was lovely to watch, starting with the tilt of his head as he admired her happiness as she painted with her class while enjoying wine, grapes and prosciutto. It was easy to imagine the thoughts running through his head, although I wouldn't have guessed he'd come up with such a beautiful sentiment to his wife about his changed view on selling the house.

See, while you were gone I realized that, um... this is hard... in our marriage, that you're the one that's made most of the compromises. You're the one that's made most of the sacrificing. You've been here for the family all the time and if selling this house is important to you, and I know it is, then I'm willing to do that for you -- for us -- because being in this house without you is... is not going to work.


That's the way a marriage should work. When two people are at a crossroads, they take time to reevaluate where they fit in each other's lives and, hopefully, they realize what it is that they fell in love with in the first place. Even better, like Zeek they'll see their deficiencies and want to make up for them to keep the marriage strong. 

Unfortunately, Julia didn't get that same feeling from Joel. I'm still disappointed in the way the disintegration of their marriage was handled, as it was untrue to their characters as we knew them. As Julia cried and asked Joel not to give up on her I tried to understand his point of view that he wished they weren't where they were, but I didn't believe him. Nothing in recent months has lent credence to that statement.

However, what's done is done and I'm interested in seeing the marriage break down. The long, lingering look that Joel gave before he got into the car lead us to believe it was his last as a resident of that house. I really don't think there will be any attempt by either party to reconcile, and I'm good with that. The damage done to their characters and their marriage is too deep for them to be accepted as a couple again. How the next chapter of their lives is handled can be just as dramatic and beautiful as was their marriage when we rooted for them.

It also wasn't surprising that Hank had trouble working for Sarah, but it was a nice switch up that he got a kick in the pants from Max, who didn't mince words in telling him that not only did he think Sarah would do a great job, but she got the job and Hank didn't.

Meanwhile, Sarah needed her own kick, and she got it from Carl. He was a bit surprised that she chose to work with the person she beat out to get the job and reminded her that it was her vision the client was impressed with, otherwise they would have hired Hank. 

When Sarah and Hank finally got to the beach and took some shots, Sarah was in her element. I'm looking forward to seeing how the campaign turns out and whether it brings her more work. Sarah's success would be a nice switch up for her character.

Unfortunately, we're going to have to wait until the end of February for the resolution on any of these stories and to find out how Amber is holding up with Seth. Thank Olympics! In the meantime, if you missed any episodes, you can watch Parenthood online here on the site.

Do you think Crosby and Jasmine will end up buying the Braverman house?


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Rating: 3.9 / 5.0 (32 Votes)

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.


Although I love this show, I've always found aspects of it to be ridiculously unrealistic. However, these last few episodes really took it to a new level, in my opinion. 1) I agree with the majority sentiment about Joel; it's untrue to his character, and while I don't agree with what Julia did, it's not enough to leave your family over without even trying to save the marriage. He refused to go to marriage counselling, but then they went to a counselor to ask about the best way to tell the kids he's leaving? Come on. 2) I find it pretty unlikely that Sarah would have been given a big photography job when she really has no experience other than working with Hank and taking some pet photos, even if she did have some "good ideas" (getting past that, I am glad that she stood up for herself). 3) I do not have a special needs child, so I can only imagine the frustration that Kristina and Adam go through on Max's behalf. However, it seems like an enormous jump to go from "I'm worried about high school" to "well, I guess we need to start a school". In my opinion, homeschooling would be the next logical step to look in to, and maybe in addition hiring someone like Minka Kelly's character several seasons ago. There's no way they'd get through all the red tape and funding, etc, in time to have a school up and running for Max's freshman year anyway, and while they're focusing their attention on doing all that, it seems to me that Max might by default kind of get put on the sidelines, which is exactly what got them to this point in the first place. I think the writers want something "big" for Kristina to do, but I was thinking that she could make some kind of career, or non-profit or something, out of being an advocate for other parents trying to find their way through the maze (like when she went to the IEP meeting with the other mom).


As a mother of a child with special needs, the Max school storyline is not realistic at all. First of all - they were just finding out about his aspbergers in the pilot episode? Second, mom is just starting to worry about HS NEXT year? Third, where is his parapro in his history class?

@ GlynisCR

ALSO as a mother of a child on the spectrum, neither I, nor many parents of aspies and other spectrum kids, could disagree more. His portrayal has been lauded as incredibly accurate. Many aspies aren't diagnosed until much later in life. Sometimes as adults! Not all areas get a parapro easily. We are blessed with a good school district but benefits decrease each year. Friends on the west coast struggle DAILY trying to obtain sufficient services for care. Max's cognitive abilities WOULD preclude him from receiving MANY additional benefits. If your experience was different, good for you. But you are VASTLY in the minority. If your child is able to get much more, I am *sincerely* thrilled for you both, and hope that you appreciate your good fortune.

@ TiffanyO

I am going to have to disagree. You may recall in the pilot that Max was showing characteristics of aspbergers, had been for some time and all of a sudden they were addressing it. His Aspbergers diagnosis could have been part of the plot already and everything else could have been the same. As for HS transition, even if the school wasn't helping with it, surely Kristina would have addressed it before now?
As for the parapro - My son shares a parapro with 4 other students. I find it very hard to believe that in Max's class he is the only Aspie and there is not more support for him.


Joel's story has been completely vapid, unbelievable, lame. Not consistent with his character up until this season. Did HE have an affair and feels guilty and is throwing the guilt onto Julia? Joel and Julia's story has been very disappointing, and insulting to the viewer's, that the writers would think viewers would be satisfied with it. Not at all!


Love this site! I am fascinated by the ASD school possibility and wonder if anyone has conjectures about how that may play out? Maybe the "homestead" could be converted to an aspie school?


Agree about Joel. What a whiny fool. Monica Potter is the character I really love to hate--so unsympathetic. I get the whole mother defending her cub thing. But how can both parents not understand that Max's classroom behavior is disruptive and annoying? He cannot be the sole focus of the teacher's attention. Get a grip already.

Sarah silva

I too knew Kristina was going to start a school, whoever it will take much more than a building and teachers.
Joel and Julia telling the kids he was moving out had me crying, then I cried again when Julia went "home" and told her parents. I was so sure this would make Camille change her mind about the house but is sure looks like she will not. I love the idea of Crosby buying the house and I can totally see that.
While I am not liking what they have done with Joel's character, I am hoping they work things out.
I like that it was Max that got through to Hank about it being Sarah's photo shoot and that they chose her because they liked her ideas, they did not hire Hank because they did not like his ideas.
I really want Sarah to get together Carl.


I actually have found my blood *boiling* at watching the cowardly Joel these past few episodes. What a selfish, whiny little brat. I wouldn't be surprised if he finally comes to his senses, but not until after Julia has moved on and realizes no WAY can she commit her heart and family back to this fair-weather husband. When you have kids, you don't let something this minor - and yes, in the scale of "til death do us part" this is minor, especially given his emotional abandonment up to this point - cause you to just throw in the towel. I was never that warm to Julia up until the past year or so, but now I want to punch Joel in the throat on her behalf. And Sydney's and Victor's behalves. Thank GOD that Zeke found the right way to express his feelings - so many wrong ways he could have said it. I'm proud of his character and SO glad Camille wasn't just "over him".


I didn't get the correlation to Zeke agreeing to sell the house/it not happening right away until Julia and the kids walked in. That would be great if Crosby and Jasmine buy it. I could see a fun arc with Zeke and Camille in the guest house for a while and Zeke intervening as he tried to let go ;.
Joel is done, and it's not clear why. I wish they would have given us more from him-but I guess we will have to wait until after the Olympics.
Did anyone wonder if Hank was trying to sabatoge the job a bit (maybe even subconsciously)? I'm glad she stood her ground because a few years ago she wouldn't have.


From the moment Joel started acting up - I guessed he was moving on to a different TV series. This is, after all, TVland - not the real world. How do we move someone like Joel off, without killing him? Make him act completely contrary to his character. Thanks, Parenthood - for amazing stories...and this epic writing fail.

@ Movin'On

Oh, missed that- what show is he going to?? New pilot?


Joel has really pissed me off this season...geez, it's not like she's been sleeping around with different men! I feel like he just gave up on his marriage! I don't even know if I want them back together. Amber this week...I just love watching her act. I've been real curious about Hadie(they disowned her or something jk) they could at least mention her or Skype her.

@ wtf

Exactly (about Joel). For a show that's had such great character development, this story line is off the wall. Who breaks up a family because the wife kissed someone, and that's all that happened. You talk about it and make-up (or make-out). The only saving grace would be if he's the one having an affair and he was just looking for an excuse to leave. good riddance, I say.

@ Roberta Liford

Yeah Iam also fed up with the writing for Joel's charcter. She did have an emotional affiar, and I know that crushed him,but Julia honestly looks like she is sorry and wants to save this marriage. Joel seems to trying to hard to end it too fast. I see alot of fans just want it to end.If so I only hope they take some time before writing in new luv intrest for either one of them.

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Parenthood Season 5 Episode 14 Quotes

Sarah: I have to acknowledge, ya know, I'm potentially in over my head.
Carl: You're not, Sarah. You're out of your comfort zone. There's a huge difference. Because look. The work's right here. You were hired for your vision, and here it is, I see it. If they wanted Hank's work, they would have hired Hank.

Tech: Sounds fun. What would you like to call your network?
Zeek: How about cancer beams?
Camille: Villa Camille. I'd like to call it Villa Camille.