• The Grinder: Warm Family Comedy With a Satirical Twist

    by  • September 16, 2015 • Broadcast Decency, Paley2015, Paleyfest • 0 Comments


    The Grinder is a sly satire on TV law dramas, wrapped around a touching story about family and brothers reconnecting.

    Stu Sanderson is a successful small-town lawyer and family man, but he’s always felt overshadowed by his older brother Dean, an arrogant Hollywood actor who is the star of the TV drama The Grinder, about a lawyer who never settles and, through his flamboyant courtroom dramatics, always wins his case.  But Stu’s discomfort hits new levels when Dean declares he’s moving back home — to practice law. No, he’s never been to law school or passed the bar; but, after all, Dean plays a lawyer on TV. How hard can it be?

    The Grinder is a fun and family-friendly comedy, with some deeper touches. Each episode will open with a clip from the fictional TV series The Grinder, which takes delight in drubbing such prime-time courtroom dramas as Law & Order for their utter lack of realism. The program also mocks the pretentions of Hollywood; as Stu points out, Dean “knows a lot of legal words, and he says them really well, but he doesn’t know what they mean.” At the same time, Stu is envious of more than Dean’s fame; he also admires his brother’s confidence. For his part, Dean encourages Stu to “push back” and be more confident in his legal knoweldge; and he envies Stu’s successful marriage and family life. In between the satire on television and Hollywood, then, there is also a touching story about how two brothers come to respect and admire one another.

    The first episode of The Grinder contained no sexual or other problematic content; and if this continues, the program may be a fun comedy families can watch together.

    The Grinder premieres Tuesday, September 29th at 8:30 p.m. Eastern on Fox.



    Christopher Gildemeister is the PTC’s Head of Research Operations. He began as an Entertainment Analyst at the PTC in 2005. From 2007-2016, he was Senior Writer/Editor, responsible for communicating the PTC’s message to the public through newsletters, columns, and the PTC Watchdog blog. Dr. Gildemeister holds a Ph.D. from The Catholic University of America.

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