By Amani Salahudeen
“Atypical” is a fascinating and heartwarming Netflix original, and the second season expands on an already complex story of mental illness, family bonds and young adulthood.
The show is about a teenager named Sam (Keir Gilchrist) who is on the autism spectrum. His parents have difficulty adapting to the challenges that come with having a son with autism, and Sam endures daily hardships because of his parents’ difficulties.
Season two of the show introduces major life-changing incidents for Sam, who is still coping with being autistic. In this season, Sam is applying to colleges and is trying to figure out what he wants to do once he’s done with high school.
In season two, we get to see the development of other characters aside Sam as well. Sam starts to interact more with his sister, Casey (Brigette Lundy-Paine), than he did in season one. He finds himself adapting better to the role of an older brother to Casey, which is a nice change.
In season one, I felt that Casey was the one being more protective of Sam. There is also more focus on Sam’s parents, and how other issues within the family affect Sam’s wellbeing.
The audience also gets to see his mother Elsa’s (Jennifer Jason Leigh) rollercoaster of a marriage during her midlife crisis, which is a new twist for viewers after her kids refused to talk to her in the season one finale.
This show teaches viewers to be more empathetic toward those around them. The show’s portrayal of an autistic main character takes steps to alleviate negative stereotypes. It is a very heartwarming show that will help you to understand a little bit of what it’s like for people with autism and for their loved ones to cope with everyday struggles.
“Atypical” may not be a must-see show, but it is definitely enjoyable if you’re a fan of family dramas. Sam is a quirky and funny character, and if you want a show with heart and with some classic family drama, “Atypical” absolutely must make your Netflix watch-list.