We ran an online poll asking our community of marketing-to-mom experts and brand leaders to tell us what they thought of the new TV show In the Motherhood (ABC, Thursdays 8:00 PM EST).  We had high hopes for this new show—after all, it was created after the popular webisode series which was sponsored by Suave and Sprint and with such comedic geniuses as Cheryl Hines and Megan Mullally, how could it fail?

Well, it appears the television version of ‘In the Motherhood’ has a long way to go before it can successfully connect with Mom viewers.  According to our poll more than 57% of our community feels the show is missing the mark with one commentator stating, “Umm, kinda crude.  Do we really talk like that?  Would rather watch ‘Big Love’ on HBO for a ‘TV-mother-fix’.”  Ouch.   Here’s what some others in our M2Moms® community thought:

Liz Gumbinner
Co-founder/Editor
Cool Mom Picks

“I think back to Roseanne, and how it worked because it was a family sitcom that broke all the rules of the family sitcom. In the case of In The Motherhood, I think the producers think they’re breaking rules, but they actually aren’t. Mothers that curse (oh no!) and drink wine (eek!) and talk about vibrators (the horror!) just aren’t interesting enough on their own to make a show a must-see–in part because this is the stuff that’s already discussed every day by millions of women on blogs and message boards. The characters are going to need more complexity and more humanity for viewers to want to catch up with their lives each week.

Mothers don’t enjoy watching other mothers on TV – they enjoy watching what entertains them. Right now In The Motherhood is missing on that front. By a lot.

Stacy DeBroff
CEO
Mom Central Consulting

“What’s most telling about the first episode of ABC’s new flat sitcom is the almost universal hostile and resentful post-mortem by all the Moms who watched the first episode. Even funny leading women stars, Cheryl Hines fromCurb Your Enthusiasm, Will & Grace’s Megan Mullally and Jessica St. Clair, could not save the low level humor (pelvis pointing with complaints of no recent action), wine drinking, sex talk, and snarky comments resenting motherhood. So step aside Desperate Housewives for the desperate ABC producers looking to captivate a large, lucrative-for-advertising Mom audience and completely missing the mark. Online comments captured it all: “In the Motherhood was an insult to my intelligence and commitment as a mother…Not one witty or “real” moment was portrayed. Channel switch!” to “This show actually was painful to watch “ or more succinctly shared three other Moms, “ a big piece of crap,” “a horrid pile of garbage,” and “I can’t recall one even remotely funny moment.” Worst of all- Mom heresy actually- the show, airing during prime time at 8 in the evening with kids tuning in, busts up the Santa myth under the premise of lying being wrong. The Moms, and Grandmas, on the boards across the internet and on the ABC.com show site hurtled insults and frustration. “They THREW Santa under the Bus!!!!” and “I was watching this vile show with my young son this evening when out of the blue it is announced that Santa is a made up character and parents are lying to their children about Santa being real.” To make matters worse, Disney owns ABC. Even Cinderella cannot put a happy ending to this new show’s thoughtless development, lack of laughs, and shallow portrayal of today’s complex motherhood.”

Dina Freeman
BabyCenter.com

I hate to say it but it really wasn’t what I expected. The premise is genius…ask real moms to submit stories and then work those bits into the show. VERY smart way to relate to moms and get us to watch. But the show seemed to focus on everything BUT what was going on with the kids. In fact, we barely even saw the kids.

I know if they made an episode about my life right now, they could probably get a whole season out of me trying to put a wiggly 6 month old and a VERY BEDTIME RESISTANT 18 month old down for bed while “contributing” on an evening conference call. Thank god for the mute button!!

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