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Or take the journey from "The Funeral" in the second season to this season's "Grandma Francis." Both episodes feature exceptional guest star Marla Gibbs, but "The Funeral" had the advantage of distance.
Joe's father died without us ever having met the character and Joe grappled with the conflicting feelings of being in mourning but not feeling the need to grieve.
Initially tackling gun control, religion and healthy eating in the black community emboldened the writers for a strong second season that included buzzy episode subjects like debating support for Bill Cosby or Donald Trump.
Those were the "big" episodes last year, but I actually preferred episodes like "The Funeral," about the death of Joe's (Grier) father and "The Blues," in which Cynthia (Devine) confronts depression and its surrounding stigma.
However, when NBC went through its comedy highlight reel at upfronts, premiering, yet again, in limbo, this feels like a fair time to remind y'all about one of the most audacious comedies on television.
The first two seasons, only 19 episodes, are available to watch on Netflix and it's not one of those shows that requires continuity to be appreciated.
But nothing has ever been easy for this topically engaged multicam.
The first season aired over only three weeks as late-summer fill-in programming.
Take, for example, the gun-control episode from the first season.After a bit of a wait to renew, NBC picked up a second season and then held it until March of last year and stuck episodes in a somewhat odd Sunday slot, before again holding off on a formal renewal announcement. Not to jump to conclusions regarding feelings about hasn't been renewed for a fourth season isn't surprising.It's not a high-rated show and we live in a TV world in which its co-ownership through 20th Television isn't an asset for NBC.The pragmatism of the show's approach to euthanasia remains, but the emotional ambiguity of the characters' responses is gone.The backdrop of the episode is strictly sad and yet the writers find an amusing way to approach the issue. In that respect, both episodes pale in comparison to "Yes Means Yes," the third-season opener.