NBC on 'New Normal' protest: Comedy a 'love letter to families'

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Image Credit: Robert Trachtenberg/NBC

In the wake of a conservative group protesting NBC’s upcoming sitcom The New Normal, the network’s entertainment president characterized the show as an inclusive family comedy to critics Tuesday.

Anti-gay group One Million Moms is calling for a boycott of the fall comedy from American Horror Story and Glee writer-producer Ryan Murphy. The New Normal is about a gay couple (Andrew Rannells and Justin Bartha) having their first child via a surrogate (Georgia King).

“[Murphy] is a guy who pushes the envelope, but this show is really his love letter to families,” NBC entertainment president Jennifer Salke told critics at the network’s press tour session in Beverly Hills. “I’ve read the first three episodes [and] they’re incredibly accessible and warm-hearted. You do get some comedy from the Nana character [the surrogate's bigoted grandmother played by Ellen Barkin], who’s brilliantly portrayed. She’s exploring an extreme side of the audience that may have different attitudes about that family.”

“It’s about responsible parenting, changing your lifestyle [when you start to have] children, pursing your dreams — from everyone’s point of view in the piece,” Salke continued. “It’s by no means centered just on the gay couple in the middle of it … the title is not meant to push the idea that it’s a more ‘normal’ family than everybody else. It’s just meant to … bring a family show to the public that captures the zeitgeist, and what’s going on in the country right now and being more inclusive.”

The New Normal premieres Sept. 11; trailer here.

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