Grace and Frankie were quite sure their husbands had summoned them to the restaurant for lunch, to announce their retirement from their law partnership…what would be a new and exciting chapter in their lives. Fact is, the two women, both nearing 70, couldn’t wait to be rid of one another! This long-awaited retirement of their husbands would mean the women would no longer be in one another’s company on business trips and social gatherings…they were completely different, and not entirely fond of one another.
However, their husbands of 40 years were definitely starting a new chapter…just not the chapter anyone had imagined! While sitting across from their wives, they announced their longtime secret love affair with one another…and with families raised, they were no longer interested in hiding their relationship and had plans to divorce their wives and marry one another!
The women fell apart.
Both retreating to a shared family cottage on the beach…both wanting to be there alone and away from one another…neither caring much about the other until they faced the realization that they were in this together.
I quite enjoyed the roles of both Jane Fonda as the elegant and proper, Grace, and Lily Tomlin as the free-spirited and eccentric, Frankie. They played off one another’s characters providing multiple laugh out loud moments as they faced a whirlwind of change.
And along with the laughter…I cried.
In almost all thirteen episodes of Grace and Frankie there was something…a moment…a feeling…that completely got me in that “been there done that” way that only someone who’s faced a divorce could understand. And clearly, whoever wrote the Netflix original, has been there and done that.
The crux of it all was family…making sure that each person was going to be ok as the family was morphing into something new. Facing unknowns. Starting over. Both women trying to battle through the stages of grief as they realized the depth and breadth of the betrayal itself…trying desperately to fall out of love, grasping for any sign, wishing it all to go away…not wanting to be alone.
I recall a comment while going through my divorce that stuck with me for a very long time…a comment I greatly despise…that “one person’s heartache is another person’s love story.”
Netflix presented us with a love story that was hard not to like, while at the same time, it showed us the story of the two left behind. I’m not so sure I would have been as forgiving of the characters had it been a straight couple rather than a gay one…and it opened my eyes a little to seeing things from the other side.
Grace and Frankie provided some truly laugh out loud moments…at times, it was lacking in its story and I was filling in blanks but I’m hopeful that those things will only get better as the show finds its groove. I greatly appreciated seeing characters in their seventies play their own ages…not just the “grandmother” role that we’re so used to seeing. Fonda and Tomlin played real women…with real problems and feelings. They looked fantastic on-screen as they faced new challenges and adventures…leaving me to believe that life in the later years…looks pretty spectacular!
And life after divorce…isn’t so bad.
Disclaimer: Curtains are Open is part of the Netflix #StreamTeam. I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with Netflix, however, all opinions are my own.