HBO is unique for the shows it brings forward and Nuclear Family is another gem in the making it seems. With the rising need for awareness about LGBTQ+ rights, the community, understanding varying gender identities and individual sexual orientation choices, it looks like the perfect time for a docu-series like Nuclear Family episode 1 to take the front seat.
At the crux, the series chronicles two women fighting an unexpected lawsuit to keep their family from falling apart. The miniseries is directed and produced by Ry Russo-Young, who is known for her acclaimed directorial film The Sun Is Also A Star and, is based on her life. It is a 3-part documentary with each episode getting a weekly release with a runtime of one hour.
– HBO’s Nuclear Family Episode 1 Review does not contain spoilers –
Nuclear Family Episode 1: A Gay Family
The episode starts with Ry introducing her moms, Sandra Russo and Robin Young, on screen. Through sepia-toned footage and VCR clips, we learn how Russo and Robin fell came out on their own terms and fell in love and started to live together. A breakthrough aspect of this series is how it tells the story of building a gay family during a time when walking on the streets with being out of the closet meant being threatened to the extend of death.
A lot of the first episode is dedicated to Russo and Robin telling us about their experiences as lesbians living in New York City. And how the young in love couple had settled down to accept the hurtful fact that they might never be parents until they found a way out.
Cris, a friend of Russo who appears in the documentary series, had helped the couple by introducing them to a movement where lesbians inseminated themselves at home. Both Russo and Robin gave their fair share of trial and ended up conceiving Cade and Ry, respectively. During such a delicate and sensitive time, both these women not only proved to the LGBTQ+ community members that it was possible to be parents but, also inspired people to start building and raising gay families.
Nuclear Family Episode 1: A Storm Awaits
Both Robin and Russo were fortunate to find good donors (gay men as they wanted to involve the community in this process) who made their contributions without any hesitation. Both the donors were originally bound with the promise to not interfere in the lives of the Russo-Young family members or take any responsibility for them, however, if the children wanted to contact them in the future that should not serve as a problem- a term agreed on by all parties involved.
It was during the pre-school years when Cade was inquisitive about if she has a daddy or not when the couple decided to make their daughters meet their donors. Although Cade’s donor turned out to be an alcoholic and stopped visitations, Ry’s donor who was a prominent lawyer for gay rights was always present with them.
With the increase in visitations and unequal indulgence shown, the lines between the involved parties started to blur and at one point it seemed like people were trying to insert themselves forcefully into the family dynamics. A fear that eventually came true as Robin got served with a lawsuit concerning paternity and visitation rights that were unexpected and uncalled for.
Nuclear Family Episode 1: Final Thoughts
The first episode of Nuclear Family serves as a good build-up to what is to come in the lives of the Russo-Young family. With personal interviews and real-life footage, it seems like Ry Russo-Young is trying to come to terms with the after-effects of the lawsuit in her and her family’s life. The show is a good attempt at educating people about the rights and desires of a same-sex couple. It gives an honest nod at parenting and how things can slip out of hand when you belong to the isolated segment of society.
You can watch Nuclear Family Episode 1 on HBO now.Instagram & Facebook to keep yourself updated with the latest news and reviews.