So like many early Millenials, I was a huge fan of ‘Full House’ when I was growing up. Being the oldest in my family, I often identified most with DJ Tanner and many of her oldest child isms. And no one could deny what a babe Uncle Jesse was and wanted to be lucky Aunt Becky!
So when it was announced last year that after over 20 years, the cast was reuniting to make “Fuller House” — a spin-off that brought most of the original cast back (with the exception of the Olsen twins) — I was excited! This series would be mainly focused on the now-full-grown sisters DJ Fuller and Stephanie Tanner, along with bestie Kimmey Gibler, all living in the Tanner childhood home, now raising their kids together.
In true Netflix fashion, they released the entire season (13 episodes) all at once so all the fans of the show could binge watch in a few viewings.
Having grown up with Full House and being such a fan of the show, I had high hopes. And overall, I’m happy to say, I wasn’t disappointed.
A few things I needed to remind myself before watching. First, Full House was always a light-hearted and some what cheesy show. It was like that in the 80’s and 90’s so to think it would be any different in this spin-off would be silly. Also important to remember, we’ve all grown up. So what we liked 20 years ago might not be something that we like now.
I will say that if you can stomach your way through the first episode, the rest are a breeze (although the cheese factor is layered on thick for the finale too). It felt like in that first episode that they had to re-establish all of their funny jokes and quirky one liners, which at times were funny but mostly they were a tad over done. Again, knowing that we’ve all grown up, it’s not as funny for a 30something year old to say “How rude!” in a childish voice, like it was when she was actually a child saying it.
I also struggled with Danny Tanner. I’m not sure why but it just felt like he was super uncomfortable in every single scene he was in. Almost like he wasn’t breathing when he was acting. It was really odd. And distracting…
But after that first episode, Danny, Uncle Jesse, Becky and Joey all move out and then the show really starts as it focuses on Stephanie and Kimmey moving in to help DJ, a newly widowed mom of three, help raise her boys. Note: The older cast members do return occasionally throughout the season to make guest appearances.
While my husband definitely made fun of me for watching this, I didn’t mind. This was part of my childhood and I felt I had to pay it homage by watching this new series. There are some really funny moments…like laugh out loud moments. And there are some also equally moving moments. One of the most poignant moments of the series for me was this moment between Stephanie and DJ, when Stephanie tells DJ that she can’t have kids. Probably because I’m a mother of three and can’t imagine my life without them and also because I know way too many friends and family who have struggled with having children, this one gets you right in the feels! (Btw, don’t mind the German sub-titles, it was the only clip I could find).
Stephanie is by far my favorite character in Fuller House. In my opinion, she is the stand out actor, along with DJ’s middle son Max Fuller. He is seriously the cutest and funniest kid on TV! Not sure where this kid came from, but he alone is worth watching. He had me laughing out loud quite a few times.
Overall, I enjoyed the series and didn’t feel it ‘ruined’ the original in any way. More like a continuation many, many years later.
Now before I end this review, I did want to touch on one issue that I’ve heard some people talk about when it comes to Fuller House. And that is the level of appropriateness for kids and young teenagers and if they should watch it. At first, I never even consider this because my kids are all under five years old and so this is wayyyyy over their heads. But as I heard this concern, when I was about half way through the series, I started viewing it slightly more with a critical parental eye.
Here’s what I would say about all of that: I don’t think Fuller House is intended for youngsters to be watching. I realize that we all have VERY different levels of what we think is appropriate, so some of you reading this might think I’m way out there with my reservations. But I just don’t think the intended audience for Fuller House are pre-teens. I truly think that their target audience are the older MIllenials who grew up watching Full House. I think that’s what the script is written for.
DJ Tanner’s husband died and she is now a widow. Kimmey and her husband are divorcing. Stephanie is going through a major life change and then we find out she can’t have kids. These are all REAL issues that MANY of my friends and family MY AGE are facing. We have had friends whose spouses have died and they are left raising young children. We’ve had many friends divorce after just a few years of marriage. And as I mentioned above, we know many people, including family, who have struggled with having kids. These are adult issues, that adults my age (and older) can relate to.
And so that’s really who I think their target audience is. Even though there are young actors in the series, I don’t think the script is geared towards them. And I think that’s why so many of my peers love (or will love) watching Fuller House.
Now I want to know what your thoughts are on Fuller House?! Have you watched it yet? Did you love it? Hate it? Let’s chat it out in the comments below!