Did you watch the premier episode of Growing Up Fisher last week? New to the NBC primetime lineup, the television show features Mel Fisher, a father who is blind. Despite the physical challenges, he still plays an integral role in raising his family. Mel teaches Katie, his teenage daughter, how to drive. He also cuts down a tree in his yard with a chainsaw.
Henry, the 11-year-old son, serves as the eyes for his father and helps his dad get around. Mel and his wife, Joyce, are amidst a divorce, yet the family remains close. The most difficult part for Henry is that his father will now get assistance from a Seeing Eye dog. It will be interesting to see how the course of events will unfold throughout the season in this sitcom.
The show’s creator and executive producer, DJ Nash, based the television series on his own life. Nash’s father was visually impaired.
In a USA Today article, Nash said, some viewers may “see the first thing about Mel is that he’s blind. My dad being blind is like the 17th thing wrong with him. He’s stubborn. He hugs too much. He’s a lawyer. There’s a lot of craziness going on over there,” he said. “I don’t want this to be every visually impaired person’s story. … We’re trying to tell Henry’s perspective of what that was like and how it informs who he is as a father today.”
I think it’s good to provide the viewing audience with a glimpse of life while living with a disability. Mainstream media is recognizing the importance of having television shows that are more diverse. I would also like to see more actors with disabilities being cast for these roles.
Let me know your thoughts about Growing Up Fisher. It airs tonight on NBC at 9:30 EST. Do you think network executives are moving in the right direction for television programming?