It’s a creatively confident style of storytelling, this hectic flickering between characters and conversations and settings, and one that turns the knotty, nuanced emotional palette of the show into gripping entertainment.
Better Things is one of the best shows FX has ever aired. No, it's probably not for everyone. Rather quirky humor. Great writing, wonderful acting, fun guest stars, terrific directing. I love it. My only complaint: it lasted only five seasons.
A not quite perfect sendoff to one of TV’s absolute gems but pretty darn close. Hilarious, moving, wise, I am grateful I got to see these amazing women grow and change. I’ll always hold a special place for this series.
Whether you’re the kid going off to college or the unmoored mom weeping into her unfiltered sake about it, you’re doing something you’ve never done before. It has been such a pleasure to watch this family grow up, and so illuminating to witness, through their eyes, how that process never ends.
The throughline for all these characters remains truthful, but the show’s pacing this season is uneven. Granted, Better Things has never adhered strictly to linear narratives or the traditional arc of a 30-minute episodic. There’s more of an emphasis on moments and feelings over plot.
The show’s best scenes have always been rooted in the feelings of ambiguity that parenthood and work evoke, and yet at times Season 5 of “Better Things” seemed to be actively withholding catharsis or key insights. ... In the main, I respected this show significantly more than I liked it for the first time.
Things went awry in the very first moments with a truly awful, corny, annoying background song and went downhill from there. If we could just have Pamela Adlon with better and more interesting characters around her, life at Sam's place would be worthy of more praise. For one thing, the aging grandma seems a carbon copy of the one in an episode of "Roar" with Nicole Kidman as the daughter. In fact, I had just watched it, and then the first episode of Better Things with the same grandma with aging issues, and it was jarring. Is this granny everywhere? And a raspberry for her super-duper brilliant kids, especially the girl with glasses who's supposed to be so precocious it's just so precious, but when the power goes out she goes "MOM! mom! mom! mom! mom! mom! mom! mom! mom! mom! and on and on until you want to reach in your 4K, 3d-like screen and strangle that horrid creature. Otherwise, the show is too frenetic. Give Pamela some time to breathe already, and time for us to enjoy her more.