The autism spectrum encompasses a group of developmental “disorders” that can impair and individual’s ability to communicate effectively or interact naturally in social scenarios. Despite the fact that millions of Americans are “on the spectrum,” those with conditions like autism and Aspergers are often underrepresented in films and television shows. That said, the first trailer for Netflix’s Atypical teases a fictional journey into a teen boy’s decidedly atypical life experience.
Released today, the two-minute spot follows Sam (Keir Gilchrist), an 18-year old autistic boy who — with a little encouragement from his therapist — decides to take a leap of faith and find himself a girlfriend. As you might expect, the trailer gets a bit sappy at times, but it packs plenty of the heartwarming awkwardness you’d expect from such a premise.
In fact, we get a prime example of it right out of the gate, as Sam casually drops that his therapist thinks he should “put himself out there and find someone to have sex with,” before correcting himself and admitting that he added “the sex part.”
On top of the trailer, the first poster for the series (below) was also released today and shows the visions of penguins that are apparently dancing in Sam’s head, along with the tagline: “Normal is overrated.” It also features the rest of his nuclear family, who — from left to right — seem reluctantly amused, genuinely perplexed, and vaguely concerned.
Speaking of the supporting cast, Michael Rapaport (Doug Gardner) seems to have a handle on the whole supportive-yet-confused-father thing and Oscar nominee Jennifer Jason Leigh (Elsa Gardner) seems equally adept at the supportive-yet-overbearing-mother thing.
Netflix has shown a penchant for tackling — if not untreaded — at least lightly treaded territory in the TV world. That said, we’re interested to see if the streamer can get past the stigma surrounding autism spectrum disorders the way that it got past the stigma surrounding physical disability in The Fundamentals of Caring (2016).
We’ll find out soon enough, as the show will be available to binge on come August 11. If you don’t feel like waiting until then, however, you can catch lead actor Gilchrist in HBO’s Room 104, which begins airing July 28.
- This homemade 8-bit computer could finally pose a challenge to Intel's 8008 CPU
- Deep learning vs. machine learning: what's the difference between the two?
- ‘Prime’-time TV: Here the best shows on Amazon Prime right now
- The best shows on Netflix right now (April 2018)
- The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (April 2018)