A Brooklyn couple has always known that their four-year-old son is more interested in fairy tale princesses than toy cars. But when his preschool director points out that his gender-nonconforming play may be more than a phase, the couple is forced to rethink their roles as parents and spouses.Written by
A Kid Like Jake
This is the third collaboration between Octavia Spencer and Jim Parsons. The first was on The Big Bang Theory ("The Euclid Alternative" Season 2, Episode 5). Ms. Spencer played a DMV agent dealing with the exasperating Mr. Parsons. The second was in Hidden Figures (2016) See more »
It's never going to be easy to really see people.
Especially the ones we love.
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SPOILER: Given that this was originally written as a play, it may be unavoidable that most of the story is of the adults. Jake's father is a Freudian-style psychologist, and there is a fair degree of filler as he repeatedly meets with a client. Jake's mother has had ballet training, had worked as a lawyer, but dropped out to be a full-time mother, to the disapproval of HER mother.
Filled with fairy tales read by his mother, there is little attempt by either parent to "correct" Jake's non-gender-conforming behavior - wearing dresses, playing the role of princess. Even at a queer-friendly pre-school, there are signs of trouble. Things get worse when the parents try to place Jake in a private kindergarten, where trial placements often end up with verbal abuse and fights.
The entire story happens over maybe 8 months, so there is no answer to the question as to whether Jake grows out non-conforming behavior, or actually identifies as a girl. I did note that Jake's last scene had him wearing not a dress but a tutu. Was it all simply his mother's influence?
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