The latest episode of the Canadian comedy series Schitt’s Creek has been met with praise by viewers for how it tackled a key character’s coming out moment.
In “Meet the Parents,” the 11th episode of the show’s fifth season, David (played by the show’s writer and co-creator Dan Levy) decides to throw a surprise birthday party for Patrick (played by Noah Reid)—his partner in both business and life, inviting his parents along.
[Warning: spoilers ahead]
But little does David know, Patrick has not yet come out to his parents.
The Schitt’s Creek episode explores Patrick’s concerns about coming out, and David’s support in helping him be his authentic self.
Ahead of the episode’s broadcast on Tuesday (March 19)—the show airs in Canada on Tuesday and in the US a day later, while its first four seasons are available on Netflix—Levy told his Twitter followers: “Tonight’s episode means the world to me and I’m so glad we finally get to share it with all of you.”
“Then I will be here, and we’ll get through this together” #SchittsCreek showing what is like to have a loving supportive partner when you are struggling to come out to your parents ❤ pic.twitter.com/19sKlzR9F5
— LadyLover (@MultiGayShipper) March 21, 2019
The response was overwhelmingly positive. Schitt’s Creek viewers have been raving about the “Meet the Parents” episode ever since it aired, calling it “amazing,” “beautiful” and “emotional” among other praise.
“Best. Episode. Of any TV Show anywhere. Ever. Patrick coming out to his parents will be a source of comfort for those struggling with the choice of how and when to come out,” one person commented.
Reacting to the episode, some people shared their own coming out stories on social media.
“I want you to know how much that tonight’s episode really touched my heart. I am sitting here with my 89yo mother wishing my father was still alive to see it too. I came out to them at age 30. It was a stressful time and thankfully things turned out well,” one viewer wrote in a Twitter thread.
He added: “You made my old gay heart full.”
Schitt’s Creek portrays queer story lines on par as any other relationship
Discussing the episode in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Levy said it was important to him that Patrick’s parents weren’t homophobic.
“That was the obstacle: Knowing that his parents cannot be against him coming out, what does that story look like?” he said. “We landed on playing on the sort of common parental fears of feeling like they’ve done something wrong, but in actuality their fears are based on the fact that he didn’t tell them, not that they have anything but love for their son. So the minute we knew that we had that kind of hook, things sort of fell into place.”
Reid, who was interviewed alongside Levy, noted that the show’s writers are among the few to treat queer storylines as they would any other type of relationship.
“There aren’t a lot of examples of same-sex relationships on television that are treated just like any relationship would be treated,” he said. “It feels like it’s really hitting home with a lot of people who don’t feel like they’ve seen that represented on screens a lot.”