When we first meet Christy (played by Scary Movie‘s Anna Faris), the protagonist of CBS’ Mom, she isn’t exactly likable. In fact, she’s sobbing uncontrollably while waiting tables, and it’s nearly impossible not to cringe at the sight.
But in Chuck Lorre’s newest sitcom, which debuted Monday night, Christy is a newly sober single mom trying to pick up the pieces of her life. And not long into the show’s pilot episode, Christy’s workplace meltdown becomes easy to understand.
Christy’s goal, as she schleps through a mediocre waitressing job and witlessly brings up two impressionable kids, is having the good parenting skills that eluded her own mom, Bonnie (Allison Janney, The West Wing). But when Bonnie crashes Christy’s Alcoholics Anonymous meeting and re-enters her daughter’s life after a “long, angry silence,” it appears the two are more similar than either cares to admit.
After all, like Bonnie before her, Christy is raising a hard-to-handle teenage daughter (Sadie Calvano, Melissa & Joey), who’s already sleeping with her boyfriend of one year (and might be experiencing some very, uh, permanent consequences). Christy’s grade-school son Roscoe (Blake Garrett Rosenthal, New Girl) isn’t quite as rebellious, but he’s just as easily influenced, judging by the hooker-filled video games he plays alongside dad Baxter (Matt Jones, Breaking Bad).
Sooner rather than later, Christy realizes she can’t win the trust and forgiveness of her kids until she (begrudgingly) extends an olive branch to her own mom. So she does. Through clenched teeth. All too soon — and much to Christy’s chagrin — Bonnie makes herself a regular presence.
The first five minutes of Mom make it difficult to sympathize with Christy, in all her ugly-crying glory. But by episode’s end, the show and its misfit characters become an oddly relatable group we can root for.
That’s what we think, but what’s your take? Grade Mom via the poll below, then hit the comments to back up your choice!Follow @rebeccaiannucci