Each week, the pair gets together with vodka and pizza to discuss life. The more they drink, the more honest the conversation gets. Newlywed Kate is learning that day-to-day married life isn't exactly what she envisioned, and Michael is coming to terms with being single.
Sounds like every other pair of best friends we've ever seen, with one key difference.
Kate and Michael are both deaf. They communicate with American Sign Language (ASL), lip reading as they mouth words, and plenty of body language. For those watching the show who aren't well-versed in ASL, closed captioning provides all of the dialogue.
The pair are so expressive when they talk, it's hard not to be sucked in during the conversation as we get to know the characters.
They're funny. They're real. They're relatable.
While deaf characters do appear on TV from time to time, they are often guest appearances or minor characters at best. Fridays puts two deaf actors into the spotlight.
Even more interesting than the fact that they communicate in sign language is what they aren't using ASL to talk about.
They don't talk about being deaf. Deaf people know that they are deaf, and don't need to spend a great deal of time talking about that point.
Likewise for Michael's homosexuality. Michael does talk about being gay, but not in the way portrayed on most TV shows. While many shows can put a great deal of emphasis on the fact that someone is gay, Fridays doesn't do that. Being gay isn't a gimmick; it's just facet of who he is. When he talks about meeting up with an old ex, we can all immediately relate, regardless of our personal sexual preference.
Why is this such a big deal? Because it shows that they are people who are not defined by a single trait.
Being deaf or being gay might be accurate ways to describe a particular person, but they do not describe the entire person. Fridays addresses this beautifully by just showing it instead of telling it. Rather than seeing a "disability" or a person's sexuality, we just see the person. This incredible perspective has a lot to teach us not just about how we see characters on television (or YouTube, as the case may be), but how we view people in the world as well.
How often do we take an entire complex human being and boil them down to a single adjective? Deaf. Gay. Homeless. Orphan. Autistic. Overweight. Hispanic. It's damaging, and it needs to stop.
Without having to berate us over the point, Fridays simply helps us see past the single adjective and lets us know the actual person instead, which is much better.
Check out the amazing first episode here:
Did you love the first episode as much as we did?
The creators of Fridays have started a Kickstarter campaign to raise money to make more episodes and ramp up the production quality of subsequent episodes.