Sunday, July 06, 2008

The Secret Life of the American Teenager

The Secret Life of the American Teenager is a new summer show at ABC Family that started last week. It's on Tuesday night, 8 p.m. The first episode can be watched on line.

Molly Ringwald plays the mother of teenage Amy; in the opening minutes of the first episode, as Mom reheats dinner for her daughter, Amy secretly takes a pregnancy test.

Amy is a band geek; the "good" daughter of the family; who had sex while at band camp, and, as she tells her friends, it wasn't like the movies, it wasn't very good, she's not even sure she really had sex... except the pregnancy test came out positive.

It's going to be interesting to see where this series goes; a show usually builds up to a big storyline such as a teen pregnancy. While Amy is the lead, so far, we've also found out that the school player, who has sex with as many girls as he can, was abused by his father and is in therapy, realizing that his behaviour is unhealthy but not quite able to stop himself. Then there is the Good Christian Girl (whose parents are John Schneider and Josie Bissett) with a brother with Downs Syndrome, who looks like she has a perfect life. Based on the character profiles (which contain some spoilers!) it looks like the parents will be part of the action, not just "yes dears" serving dinner (even tho so far, we've seen the parents only at dinnertime.)

It looks like this will be nice summer soap opera to watch; also, this is by Brenda Hampton (of 7th Heaven fame). I know! One of the things I loved/hated about the Camdens was that the family was insane, yet thought they were normal. I had to laugh at a moment in the first ep where Amy goes to a dance on a date (not the baby's father), her two friends show up, and Amy asks "are you stalking me?" Stalking friends and family is a classic Camden move. Also? These two girls have already decided that Amy's best plan of action is to get married.... which is also classic Camden.


Jen Robinson said...

On your recommendation, Liz, I've just added this to my Tivo list. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

My husband and I watched this and we really liked it. I can see the Seventh Heaven comparisons but I'm hoping it stays more like Degrassi (at least the first few seasons). It can deal with issues as long as the characters and writing are strong. I immediately fell in love with Amy's dance date (whose name I have already forgotten) and think the Christian cheerleader is already better than Darcy (I really wonder what they'll do to her character now that the actress is going to 90210).

I'm such a teen TV dork.

heather (errantdreams) said...

Oh my. Not really my kind of show, and I don't watch much TV any more, but maybe I'll catch an ep sometime!

jamie said...

It's a little too wholesome feeling for me (Gossip Girl! Gossip Girl!) and I must admit I watched only to see how I'd feel with Molly Ringwald playing a Mom (haven't decided.) And John Schneider - still really good looking, not much of an actor.

Jen Robinson said...

I've watched the first two episodes now, and I like it. Especially as an antidote to the wasteland of summer television. I'm ok with it feeling a bit wholesome (though I enjoy Gossip Girl, too). I really like Amy.

I do find seeing Molly Ringwald as a mom (soon to be grandma) a bit disturbing. I reecently re-watched The Stand, and seeing her like this makes me feel old.

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