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"The Fosters"
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Reviews & Ratings for
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147 out of 169 people found the following review useful:

Exceptional 1st episode, fills a gaping void in the family show genre

9/10
Author: Andy Gianniotis from Sydney, Australia
13 June 2013

What an excellent start, i was gripped within the first 2 minutes of watching the excellently paced 1st episode. This show wants you interested right from the start but there's no tricks or flashy style, just good solid drama. The acting is superb, especially from the 2 moms, it was nearly like watching a documentary of a family in action. I also remember thinking the music the show used was particularly appropriate and very complimentary to the visuals.

As the title implies, The Fosters is a show about a foster family but with a nice modern day twist - there are two moms instead of a mom and dad, the eldest son is the biological son of one of the moms from a previous marriage, and then there are the twins, a boy & girl, recently adopted by the family. This is a show concerned about all the people who fall outside of the traditional family existence, about the children who need another family to take them in. And they make it interesting! Really can't emphasize this enough, there was obviously a great effort employed to combine the serious and complex issues with the need to entertain to tell the story, and they did brilliantly, i wasn't bored for a second.

I have to thank the reviewer who summarized The Fosters as "filth", i may not have ever watched it but after reading his/her review i felt it my public duty to actively counteract this act of douchebaggery by watching the show and then actually saying something objective somewhere in my review. I was so glad to see that 0 out of 12 people found his review useful (lol) but because this poorly-disguised rant against homosexuality was the featured user review, and also because there were only 2 reviews at time of writing, i felt it would be useful to be number 3 to let you guys know you won't be wasting your time with this one :)

I really can't think where they fell down, apart from a small complaint that 'who was who' was a little hard to follow at times, even though that by the end you know who is who. I'm taking a hard stance on this point and deducting one from the score.

9/10.

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97 out of 118 people found the following review useful:

Round of applause for The Fosters

10/10
Author: Lana Thiel from Wisconsin
25 June 2013

I live in a small city in Wisconsin where being gay is rarely spoken about. I am a high school English teacher at a local high school and the adviser for the Gay Straight Alliance. "The Fosters" gives me hope and I believe it also gives my students hope. I love the way it normalizes a marriage between two women as I hope to be married someday to a woman as well. This show is tastefully written and beautifully acted. The relationship between Teri Polo and Sherri Saum's characters feels authentic and is well represented. I am appalled by the reviews of others on the IMDb site who feel that The Fosters is ''trashy" or "disgusting" or should not be classified as a "family show." This is the truest family show I have ever seen because it speaks to who I am. Shame on those who cannot see past their own biases concerning what it means to be a family. Congratulations to everyone involved in the production of this show. You should be proud of yourselves.

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65 out of 80 people found the following review useful:

Love the show as it stands today

Author: jwalsh2-706-445086
7 June 2013

I love the idea of this show and my four adopted kids are watching it carefully. We are a mixed family both in race, gender, and biological children. Our kids are teens and preteens now and came to us in similar fashion as the show. Please do your research to keep the show real. The show is touching quickly on hot topics and should explore both the good and bad of blending a family. My kids are blocking out the time slot for this show and we are watching as a family so that we can talk about important issues that the show brings to the forefront. My girls are huge fans of Jenifer Lopez and three of my six children are Hispanic. If the show is done correctly, than they can see where their past experiences link to the show and how choices the characters make may come up in their futures. Best of Luck with the show.

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57 out of 71 people found the following review useful:

Great family drama

8/10
Author: pocky fdadada
19 June 2013

I'm fast becoming a fan of ABCs drama shows, they always have a normal enough setting with such a deep undercurrent you just have to tune in to find out the secrets that everyone possesses. The show revolves around a lesbian couple that foster children, they have twins who want to spend time with their birth mother, a boy from one of the mothers previous relationships, and when the show begins they take on a girl who just got out of juvenile detention.

The kids are good actors and have good chemistry together, they have the usual teenage problems, pushing the boundaries with their parents, trying to find out who they are etc. The story about Callie, the new girl from juvenile detention is very interesting. At first some people judge her as being a violent young offender but we start to see that she comes from a very troubled home life and just wants to fit in and be loved.

The chemistry between the two mothers is fantastic, it's not camp or overdone, it's a normal representation of a couple struggling to raise kids who just happen to be women. They embrace, they argue and apart from the mild surprise at the start, it feels like watching any other parent duo. In particular I have to praise scenes that take place between the two moms and the ex husband and father of one of the boys. They all have equal rights to the raising of their children and they are trying to figure out how that works with three people, something that happens frequently for any divorced parent with a child that remarries.

Overall I would say it's a very interesting show, it's not an over the top teen drama where they all get pregnant, it's kids dealing with a lot of normal problems and also trying to gel with so many people under one roof from different backgrounds and walks of life.

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31 out of 40 people found the following review useful:

Best New Family-Drama of the Year

10/10
Author: zactac from United States
16 July 2013

I am one to be very cautious when watching a teen-drama on ABC Family. After all "Pretty Little Liars" isn't the most enthralling teen murder-mystery show and "Secret Life" just wasn't sophisticated enough to be smart TV fare. However, ABC Family has blown me away with it's brand-new television series "The Fosters." The show starts off telling the story of Callie, a girl in foster care, she's just getting out of juvie and is now sent (her younger brother Jude will join her) to live with another foster family but this one is a little bit different from her other homes. The house is made-up of three other teenagers: Brandon, the biological son of his mom from a previous marriage; Mariana and her brother Jesus, twin Latino teenagers who were adopted when they were children; and we round it up with Lena and Stef, a bi-racial lesbian couple raising the children together. Stef is Brandon's biological mother but that doesn't stop him from referring to Lena as mom too. So now Callie is in this whole new situation that is something she never even considered possible until now. Now the insane weekday mornings getting ready for school and work can begin.

In the very first episode it is as plain as day that this family isn't the definition of what is considered a "traditional family" but that doesn't matter, people are too busy getting breakfast ready and skateboards out of the kitchen to really care. The show has done an immensely wonderful job at describing how much the definition of family has changed throughout the years. When you think of the perfect family you think of "The Brady Bunch" but as Stef elegantly put it during a conversation with Lena "We're not the Brady Bunch." Instead of being "perfect" they're real which is very refreshing for family drama.

The maturity in this show is also very surprising considering it is a teen drama from ABC Family, which (except in the case of Switched at Birth) usually always ends up being a soap-opera. The writers obviously take their time in crafting convincing characters that we will love and absolutely relate to. But this would definitely end up being a stereotypical, cheesy show if it wasn't for the amazing cast assembled on the screen. Even in it's most melodramatic moments the cast finds a way to keep it one of the most grounded shows on television.

But probably the main reasons to keep watching are because of three women: Maia Mitchell (Callie), Sherri Saum (Lena), and Teri Polo (Stef). Teri Polo and Sherri Saum have natural chemistry that easily transitions on screen with their performances. Both women are equally convincing in their roles as caring mothers raising the five teenagers under one roof and as a loving, married couple who would do anything for each other. To see that kind of affection is inspiring. However, it is Maia Mitchell who steals the show as the reserved and tough Callie. Maia Mitchell brings a subtlety to the role that makes her performance all the more powerful. Maia breaks the stereotype that all foster children are delinquents bent on destroying everything in their path and showing that not all foster kids are like that. She shows that Callie has a wisdom beyond her years because of her experiences in foster care and that she is a capable young woman with true issues from her past. Such honesty is something rarely seen in any young performer these days and to find it in an hour show every week is a dream come true. She definitely has a bright future ahead of her.

In the end, "The Fosters" proves to be a wonderful family-drama about love, trust, and just living life. There was much potential for this to go wrong but also just as much potential for this to go right. And I am pleased to announce that this has gone right indeed. With wonderful performances, smartly written script, and sensitive direction "The Fosters" sores beyond the usual expectations of family-dramas. And yes, Stef was right when she said "We're definitely not the Brady Bunch" and thank God for that.

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29 out of 39 people found the following review useful:

Love is thicker than blood

8/10
Author: ahartmak
16 July 2013

I am so happy that this show exists. It does a great job at bringing foster life to light. There are some fantastic foster families out there, but there are also lots of abuses. This show gives an example of both in a very accurate way. Bravo to the fosters for taking that leap. And bravo to the actors for doing such a fantastic job at playing such emotionally charged roles and doing it so flawlessly. I can't wait to keep viewing and see how their stories unfold. There is so much pain in the world, but the Fosters' house seems to be the cure and can be a model for all families to go by. Regardless of where you come from, you are worth love and the sense of belonging.

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34 out of 49 people found the following review useful:

Simply fantastic!

10/10
Author: kendrat199-722-128370
14 July 2013

This show is amazing not because of its progressive stance (a multi-racial family that includes same-sex parents), but its ability to avoid stereotyping. We could've had a show that took a political standpoint for or against gay marriage, but instead we get a series that paints a loving family going through the trials that all families have to go through. Everyone's different background (the Latino twins, the delinquent foster child, the son from one of the partner's previous marriage) could've been used to create one dimensional characters whose behavior was predicted based on label. However, this show doesn't resort to that. It has a well- rounded cast in terms of acting and has you empathize with every P.O.V. :] Thank you ABC Family for giving us this rare gem. Sad we had to wait till now to get something like this on television.

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30 out of 45 people found the following review useful:

Worth your time.

10/10
Author: MacCarmel from California
2 July 2013

I first heard about this show at episode 3. I wasn't that impressed with the one episode but thought this is a show I'd like to know more about, so circled back to the pilot and ep. 2. I must say, not only did I change my mind but I want to thank ABC Family for putting this show on the air. It's unique, delightful, real, impressive in all it's warts of family life and a wonder to see unfold.

It is rare, indeed, to see lesbians on screen in any capacity. To see a series devoted to moms and their family is noteworthy. To see a real life depiction of a foster situation, and all the inevitable anger and acting out against the "good guys" (in this case, the good moms) is even more rare and wonderful. I have no issues with the acting, only with the preposterous scenario of setting up ex-spouses as police patrol partners. Never gonna happen. For good reason.

To be a foster parent means, by definition, to show great patience and love with children who need it more than you can imagine. I think this is exactly what you see on screen. And ultimately, what you see is children who appreciate that, and show it in ways large and small. As much as they can muster on any given day.

Well done ABC Family.

Update: The first half of season 1 was pretty great. And then they took a six month break and came back with a second half of the season that appears to have been written with focus group feedback and/or merchandising potential in mind. Not much of it was believable except that emotions run high amongst teenagers. It was a big disappointment. I'm hoping for a return to better writing with the new season.

2nd update: 2015 - Quickest demise of a noteworthy series on my watch. Bad writing has ended my season pass. What first brought praise now brings scorn for shoddy workmanship. Come on, Hollywood. You know you can do better.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

If These Were My Children I Would Run Away

5/10
Author: gregorybmowery from Portland, OR
1 August 2017

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Don't get me wrong. This show is very entertaining, but it also crowded to insanity with way too much teenage angst into it's four seasons and that is also its weakness. A top-notch cast led by Terri Polo (Stef) and Sheri Saum (Lena) as lesbian parents of five kids--one of them, Brandon) is from Polo's earlier marriage before she came out and they have adopted two twin Latino kids, Mariana (Cierra Ramirez) and Jesus (Jake T. Austin and later Noah Centineo), who have been through the system of foster homes following the abandonment of their parents to drugs and other issues. The show opens just as they come to care for a sister, Callie (Maia Mitchell) and brother, Jude (Hayden Byerly) who have been in numerous foster homes and been rejected for adoption numerous times. Stef is a cop--competent, almost swaggering him her zeal to be right, while Lena is a teacher for a Charter school. The family lives in one of the most gorgeous Arts & Crafts houses in San Diego you've ever seen. There's no way in hell they could afford this and five kids. Stef and Lena try to instill parental control but it's a losing battle from the get-go as these kids do the dumbest things over and over again. They are in constant peril whether through the foster parenting system that sucks, assumes the kids are screwed up, and doesn't protect them to the constant shifting of their own personal stories. So Jude is gay and has all those attendant issues. Callie can't help her attraction to her older foster brother, Brandon, and the two of them nearly wreck their chances at a solid family life through the first two seasons. Mariana is an insecure, if smart and talented young lady, but she's also a bitch and a troublemaker and can't ever keep a secret, which leads to insane plot lines that cause the family no end of troubles. Jesus is sweet and sexy to the girls but dumb as a post. And if that isn't absurd enough consider:

Callie, whose mother died when she was fourteen has a rich father who never knew of her existence. He comes on the scene to imperil her adoption.

Mariana and Jesus have birth parents too, The mother is a neglectful drug addict and their father is a man who has been false accused of being a sexual offender by the twins' mother and her parents.

These young teens--ages 14 to 16 couple, split up, change partners, and do some really dumb stuff. Typical of teenagers, you say? If I were the parent of any of these kids, I'd like them up. They are a danger to them selves and need to be protected--FROM THEMSELVES. This kids experience it all--car accidents, confrontations with the police, show their lack of respect for anyone older than they are, and still the mothers here, though stressed out all the time by the antics of their kids, forgive them. Encourage them. Love them. And wait for the next wave of disasters that are sure to come.

I grew up a very sophisticated teenager with a lot of freedom from the age of 12. It was the 60s and I never managed to get into the kind of trouble these siblings are enforced to do by the writers of this show. Marianna is a particularly annoying, but oh, I said that earlier. This lady needs to be locked into her room, her phone taken away, and her outrageous send of entitlement frozen until she's at least 25. Callie can't take on too little causes to justify her need to fix kids lost of the foster system. Brandon needs to be kept away from needy girls. He cannot help but run to their rescue, often with disastrous results. Jesus is just a dumb teenager who never seems to have had a reflective moment in his life. That leaves Justin, the quietest of the quintet.

Everybody's ex's show up in this show and the end up living together. It's so weird. THE FOSTERS is good about exploring all subjects: teen pregnancy, gay sex, teen self absorption, the pathetic stage of the foster care system. We see a an attractive, committed lesbian couple taking care of their kids and believe me, these kids are not nearly grateful enough for the little that is asked of them. The show tackles very adult themes. And that's good for teenagers.

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11 out of 19 people found the following review useful:

Mediocre Family Drama

6/10
Author: wahoo8888 from United States
7 July 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This show definitely has possibilities. The key word is drama and the set up for this show should allow for many seasons worth. The biggest problem for me so far is the acting. While some members of the ensemble are great, several of the younger actors are so bad it is distracting. While this may be acceptable for a comedy, where overacting is often part of the charm, here it detracts from the drama. It deadens some moments that were meant to be (and should have been) serious. And though I haven't watched the show from the beginning, I wonder how a teacher and police officer can afford the extremely large and appointed home they reside in, especially on the west coast.

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