Parenthood Review: On The Same Page

at .  Updated at . Comments

In the first episode of the new year, it seems that communication will continue to be a running theme on Parenthood. How long until everyone one gets on the same page?

I certainly hope we can all learn from Parenthood Season 5 Episode 11 how important communication is to maintaining healthy relationships.

What is said has less of an impact than what is left unsaid, and some characters are learning that the hard way.

A Marriage in Trouble

Hank's exploration of self thanks to his friendship with Max was enlightening. His personality has always seemed a bit abrupt and the character has shown a lot of difficulties communicating on an emotional level. His bond with Max was an exception to that, and when Max had an Asperger's outburst, Hank was given a book by Adam to help him deal with it should it arise again.

Hank's research of Asperger's lead him to believe he might suffer from the syndrome himself. Instead of being concerned, it came as sort of a relief to him. He realized his inability to connect with his wife and daughter might be because he didn't fully understand his own limitations, and by understanding those he could find ways to improve the way he interacts with others. His friendship with Max could have a greater impact on his life than he ever imagined.

It was nice to see Drew and Amy reconnect after everything they went through after she had her abortion. She apologized for letting him go, essentially, which was something Drew really needed. As suspected, her arrival threw Natalie for a loop and she began to reconsider her "friends only" approach. Watching her slide between Drews legs on the picnic blanket as if marking her territory was a pathetic attempt on her part to claim something that had already been freely offered.

Once again I found myself disappointed in Sarah. When you look at her past relationships, she has hardly been the most discerning dater. Carl has been kind to her. He's funny and has a nice circle of friends. There have been no cues that she should have picked up on to make her think he was anything other than eligible and worthy. Yet for some reason she had him in her no column. My only guess was that he chose to live in the apartment building in which she was the super.

Then she discovered he's not only a highly accredited doctor, but one who runs a charitable foundation that builds hospitals all over the world for the underprivileged and all of a sudden Sarah considers her plus one situation a date. Am I the only one who found that rather insulting toward Carl? 

He's apparently one of those people who doesn't let money define him, and Sarah was judging him because of it. All of these years and I still don't have an adequate handle of just who she is supposed to be. If she had just talked to him instead of prejudging him, she might have learned a lot about him much sooner.

Zeek's bachelor lifestyle has run its course. While I like that he found a friend his age, and I really hope he sticks around, I'm more concerned about the lack of discussion between he and Camille. As he struggled to write an email to her about coming home, I wanted to reach through the screen and do it for him.

Zeek!! Just tell her you love her and miss her! Or get on a plane and extend that trip TWO weeks, one for her to paint and another for your Millie to show you everything she fell in love with on her trip. Fall in love with your wife all over again. Relationships are so difficult, but I have to hope that after that many years of marriage they would have learned something.

Finally we have Julia's situation with Ed. She came clean with Adam, and in telling him what happened, the viewers were clued into where she's coming from. She doesn't have feelings for Ed, but missed Joel. That makes sense. Adam's advice to her was perfect, and it really helped that he told her about his own experience with a kiss from someone else.

While I wish Julia had told Joel the truth about the kiss, it didn't seem like the right time to tell him. She did read him right that telling him after a physical confrontation with Ed would probably not end well. She was put into a no win situation. Will Joel taking a bit of time to himself help him come to terms with his own feelings with what's been happening in their marriage? We can only hope they get on the same page.

All in all, it was a pretty good start to the new year. It was nice not to see Amber. The brotherly bond in action as Adam and Crosby protected Julia was beautiful to see and Hank's renewed friendship with Max was adorable, especially since he sees so much of himself in his young friend.

Perhaps this means things are looking up for the Braverman clan and Parenthood will be the show we look forward to seeing again every week. 


Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
  • 4.0 / 5.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
User Rating:

Rating: 4.5 / 5.0 (26 Votes)

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


Love the relationship between Max and Hank. Also love that Christina is starting a school/home schooling for Max. Best thing for him. Disappointed in Joel. To throw away his marriage because of one kiss is unreasonable. And to say it's not the marriage that is the problem, but that Julia is. It's never just one person's fault. Joel refuses to try to work this out with Julia and a marriage counselor. His acting also seems really flat. Are they writing it this way because he is leaving the show? Sarah's choices are almost always bad. She threw away the only really grounded relationship she has had--Mark. Left him, then said she was "going to try to make it work with Hank". By the time the show returned, she was no longer with Hank and we never really found out why. Bring Jason Ritter back. I do like Ray Romano's character and his relationship with Max. Max is my favorite and I'm always amazed at his acting skills.


I am not a fan of Sarah, but I understood her reservations in dating Carl. did you forget she needed to repair his toilet because he flashed condoms??? I mean...that doesn't exactly scream: "I am dating material". She saw all these young girls going around...I get her point.
Now she saw something more, which I do not think is about money, and she would like to explore it. I think it's fair! still rooting for Joel and Julia...but I am not that sure she doesn't have feelings for any case I would have told him the whole truth right there. these things have a way to come out ...and Joel was asking her to be honest. she should have grabbed the opportunity.

Sarah silva

I think Sarah saw Carl as a womanizer, she did not want to be with a guy like that. I do like him and want her to give him a chance and I think that now that she knows he is a caring doctor etc she will give him that chance.
Hank having Asperger's makes sense and I like that storyline.
I really want Julia and Joel to work on their marriage but I do not know if it will be possible.
I was fully expecting Zeke to get a ticket and meet Camille in Italy after the friend he made said that is what he would do! I am not sure how things will be when she is home.
I really like Amy and I hope she stays! Drew said he wanted her to stay and I hope he meant it! I wanted to slap Natalie when she tried to mark her territory, she did not want Drew to be her boyfriend before and I hope he does not give in to her now!


Agreed with most of your commenst in the review of this episode, except for those relating to Zeek and Camille and Julia and Joel. While I agree Zeek can be as stubborn as a mule sometimes, he probably is still having a hard time with Camille telling him she did not want hin to come with her to Italy. Now she's saying she wished he was there, but wants to stay another week with a friend in the country. Sorry, but given Camille was the one who told him she didn't want him there in the first place, I think it's up to her to say flat out, "Please get on the next plane and come to Italy." Saying she wished he was there and then following that up with "I'm going to stay an extra week" seems to be a bit of a mixed signal. As for Julia and Joel, I think Julia was a little vague about her feelings for Ed. When Adam asked her if she had feelings for the guy, her response was "I don't" Glad she cleared that up. I hope that's not the response she gives to Joel if he asks her the same question. And I disagree that blatantly lieing to Joel when he was pleading with her to be truthful with him was a smart move. At that moment he was looking for a reason to trust her and with everything that had just happened, she basically asked him to believe that Ed was nothing more than a delusional stalker. And Joel didn't buy that? Gosh, didn't see that coming.

@ Bill

Camille didn't invite him, she did not say she didn't want him to go. that's different.
She was pissed at him being so stuck, she wanted something for herself, and she made the right choice. I think she had sacrified a lifetime for her family, kids, husband...
No mixed signal there. of course she cares about him, and she would like to share the amazing things she is experiencing, that all she wanted for their third act...while Zeek is busy doing what???!!!!
Buy the ticket NOW, do not wait for any invitation, after all they have been married for so long, does he need permission to surprise his wife?!


Oops tricky button
They switched places. First she was the selfish and detached career woman and now he is! Maybe the writers need a new direction for them!
When is Zeek going to get it, when she gets home?! Camille should find herself a little Italian cutie to show her around and forget Mr selfish and boring! I loved watching Drew work out his dilemma with the girls. He wins for most endearing Braverman but His scheming Uncles take second!
I always thought Hank and Max were kindred spirits, and I'm really surprised he saw himself in those pages! Finally I get why Hank is even on this show. Before now I thought it was just a waste of Ray Ramano. But now I see what a good dramatic actor he can be! Opening up this discussion on a hit show could be ground breaking for this disorder!!!
Can't wait to see how the season turns out! Always amazed at this show.


Glad they gave Amber and Ryan a week off in the midst of all that happened with Julia and Joel! Seems to me they switched


Backing up cj and Amy, when we first saw him he had a young girl with him and he and Sarah always joke about how he dates really young girls exclusively. Seems like one night with Sarah has him reconsidering his rules for dating, but Sarah was right to be cautious for a change. I think seeing this other side of him lets her know he can be partner material, but it doesn't mean he's ready to abandon his lifestyle. Watch and see Sarah, have some fun but don't throw your heart out there too quick.


anyone catch the name of the book hank read??

@ nate

"Understanding Asperger's" i think :)

@ nate

Trying to find out!

@ Carissa Pavlica

could you let me know, if you find it


I have to disagree with your take on Sarah. She wasn't keeping him at a distance because he lived in the apartment. It was because she didn't want to get hurt again. He was coming home with a different hot young chick every night. That's why she set boundaries. At the party 2 things happened. He left her and went to talk to 2 other women which made her jealous and she realized there was more to him than a wild bachelor. She sees him now for who he really is and not the persona he previously showed her. It wasn't about money at all. Plus he's working for a non-profit so he may not make a lot. I hope we see them together more and open up to each other.

@ cj

So what exactly has changed to make her reconsider him as boyfriend material, other than her knowing now he is a succesful doctor who does award winning charity work? If she was just being cautious at first because she didn't want to get her heart broken again (actually I thought she was more the heartbreaker in her relationship with Hank), why is she now reevaluating that decision? Also, I guess I tend to root more for the average shmuck, like Hank, not Mr. Wonderful. And I thought Ray Ramono did an outstanding job in this episode. REALLY like his character.

@ cj

Carl was always being kind to Sarah and inviting him to join her. She made assumptions. He warmed her with his electric heaters (and blew a fuse - lol), and introduced her to his adult friends at a wine party when she expected a kegger. She kept saying he was too young and other odd comments without backup. He spoke to women at the benefit because they were there; why was that inappropriate? I've worked for non-profits, and the big guys don't suffer. They earn every penny they make and work hard for their money, and it's nice to know doesn't waste his on a big house - but it's doubtful he's lacking it. I meant more that she assumed his was a loser due to circumstance, but it's his choice to live as he does, not his lot in life.

@ Carissa Pavlica

Actually she did not keep saying he was too young. She kept referring to how young the women he usually dates are. Even he said that he didn't want to take someone "who would drink 5 cosmos and throw up in the shower" referring the the fact that he normally dates young, wild , party girls. I think she saw a new side to a man that she had previously thought to be just lifetime bachelor who chases after tons of pretty little things./

@ Carissa Pavlica

Hi Carissa,
what happened to the Crosby family? I have noticed that they arent mentioned in your last three reviews at all.

@ Eve

Hi Eve! Crosby's family has kind of been on the sidelines with the real drama has been hitting the screen. I noted in this review that he helped out his sis Julia, and in one the reviews before the break that he was an awfully great uncle to Amber when she needed one as he asked if Ryan had ever hurt her physically. Crosby was also the best character on the TV Fanatic report card, in case you missed it! :-)


Every week, I find myself amazed at the writing and acting in this show.

Tags: ,

Parenthood Season 5 Episode 11 Quotes

Julia: Listen, I don’t know what you thought…
Ed: I thought that I felt something from you. That’s what I thought.
Julia: I’m married.

You seem like the kind of plus one who wouldn't drink a bunch of Cosmos and then hurl in the shower.