Parenthood Season 4 Review “Keep On Rowing”

It’s a new year and a new episode of Parenthood!

This week’s episode, directed by Dax Shepard, was a solid outing and I found it a bit odd that NBC decided to air it so soon, as most networks are still running marathons and repeats.

How great was the opening sequence this week? It was so great to see Kristina letting loose on the dance floor, hitting a split and engaging in a little girl talk. Of course, the good time was not without a price as it led to the revelation that she’d begun losing her hair because of chemotherapy. The jubilant club scene was a nice compliment to the powerful image of Kristina shaving her hair.

Monica Potter and Peter Krause did an excellent job this week. Granted, the entire cast is brilliant and always wonderful to watch but dealing with the loss of Kristina’s hair was a standout moment for the pair. I loved Kristina’s remark about Max liking her new look because it made her resemble Bane from Batman. Unfortunately for Adam, his groggy, startled reaction to Kristina’s look after she woke him up did not get the couple off to a great start. It was no surprise when the two fought but it was nice to see them make amends with a hotel room and a promise of a trip to Funkytown. Even if Kristina was too tired for the trip, it was a sweet moment between the two.

Finally, Joel and Julia came back to the forefront this week and things are still rough for the couple as they continue to incorporate Victor into their family. This was an especially rough week for Victor as Joel and Julia had to explain to him that his mother waived her parental rights and they were officially his parents. To a child, it sounds like someone telling you that you’ll never see the person you’ve known as your mother again. To make matters worse, the always manipulative and calculating Sydney senses Victor’s vulnerability and of course, antagonizes him. Victor responds in-kind by throwing a baseball bat.

The scene was extremely difficult to watch that scene, particularly the look of fear on Victor’s face as the bat crashed through the glass. I’m sure he didn’t want to hit Sydney and he was probably terrified that yet another mother would not want him any more. It was also crushing to hear Julia refer to Sydney as our child. Thank goodness for Joel, who tried to reason with Julia and urge her not to overreact.

Although I’m not totally on board with Sarah and Hank, this week’s episode did a good job of fleshing out why Sarah would be drawn to him at the expense of Mark’s feelings.

Shepard proved himself capable both behind the camera and in front of it, in one of the episode’s lighter storylines. Jasmine’s mother, who has done very little to show her contempt for her son-in-law in the past, was now jobless and bordering on broke. In what was certainly the manifestation of Crosby’s worst nightmare, Jasmine offered her mother a place to stay. Although I’m sure these two aren’t done with their tenuous relationship, it was nice to see them share a nice moment this week. I really enjoyed the exchange between the two as Renee told Crosby he was a good man.

Funniest moment of the night? The salesman who hit on Kristina commenting to Adam, “you put three in there?” Ha! Indeed, Kristina’s still got it.

What did you think of this week’s Parenthood? Just when we thought we couldn’t take anymore Braverman drama, it looks like Amy has a bun in the oven. I saw this coming last season. Ugh.

  • xlk

    they had to air the episode earlier b/c of the state of the union address taking up a tuesday in january.

    • Ahhh! You’re absolutely right. Thanks!