Adoptive parents develop radar for insensitive language and story lines pretty quickly. Wes Anderson’s simplistic treatment of adoption in The Royal Tenenbaums (We’re not biological siblings? Let’s make out!) stuns me. Arrested Development, usually brilliant, employs a similar incestuous twist between adoptive siblings at the end of the series, implying that adoption just doesn’t “count” when it comes to defining families.
These aren’t the only examples of adoption as questionable entertainment. Despicable Me, The Jungle Book, and Juno, all present varying levels of cringe-worthy plot points and lines.
So why didn’t I consider this risk when buying tickets to see a student production of Annie, Jr.? In my enthusiasm to support my friend’s kids and hear “Hard-Knock Life,” I didn’t consider the obvious subject matter–and our adopted seven-year-old son’s reactions. [Read more…]