A few weeks ago, I first came across the trailer for the TV show "Speechless" on YouTube and I immediately knew that I would have to watch this show! I just had to know how the life of this incredible family would continue throughout the show.
I finished the first season of the show a few days ago and I am so grateful that I watched it (season two, I'm coming!). What I love so much about this show is the way it deals with the disability of one of the characters - the show is not shy to use humour but also address serious issues in an open and respectful way. In German, we use the word Berührungsangst to characterise people's fear of contact. In my opinion, shows like this one can reduce people's Berührungsangst with regards to disabled people. Unfortunately, disability is still a rare topic in television, but I hope there will be more shows like Speechless!
This show is a show for anyone - it will make you laugh and think very hard about what it means when you stare at that person in a wheelchair on the train. The thing which makes the show even better is that we get to look at the topic from all sides - we get an insight into the parents' thoughts, the siblings' ways of helping out and also trying not to be overlooked, and the school's and health support's perspectives. ABC, thank you for making this show! As someone who has an aunt who has Down Syndrome, I am really glad that the topic of disability is no longer a taboo for the entertainment industry.
Another show which is quite similar to Speechless and which was the first show I discovered where a health issue was treated with the required empathy but also some humour, is Netflix's Atypical. I feel in love with the autistic main character's family and how he navigates his life. Atypical focuses more on the main character's side than the other characters' perspectives and Speechless gives a more balanced account of all perspectives. Both approaches have merit and I think the two shows are equally good.
Do you guys know a great TV show/movie that I should put on my Netflix list? Let me know about it here.
Lots of Love,