the new normal obama mama 'New Normal': 'Obama Mama' episode inspired by Norman Lear's 'All in the Family,' says creator Ryan MurphyIn Tuesday’s episode (Sept. 25), “The New Normal” is tackling one of the big issues of the fall of 2012 — the presidential election. Creator Ryan Murphy says it was an important issue to address.

“I was talking to Ellen Barkin about it, we were talking about how it’d be interesting to do … an episode that’s sort of not what you would expect us to do,” says Murphy. “Two clearly gay, liberal guys at the heart of the show, but we thought it would be great where you presented [Ellen’s character’s] point of view — the Conservative point of view, the Republican point of view — that certainly was as eloquent and was given equal time.”

On the show, Ellen Barkin plays ultra-conservative Jane Forrest, grandmother to main character Goldie, who is acting as a surrogate for a gay couple. And Jane is not pleased about it, making her Conservative views known.

“I think it was something important for us to do and something that I was inspired by what Norman Lear used to do, particularly on “All in the Family,” presenting both sides of the issues,” says Murphy. “I would be entranced by the Archie/Meathead dinner table arguments.”

“[The episode] was a pleasure to write … it was surprisingly fun and easy to write,” Murphy continues. “[NBC’s] only caveat was that we be fair and I agreed. I didn’t want to do a 100% pro-Obama episode.”

“In my career, I tend to have been drawn to things that are polarizing … I tend to do stuff that people either love or they hate. I’m used to that reaction. I’m very proud of the episode. I think that it really was influenced and inspired by my love of Norman Lear and I know that he is a supporter of the show, a fan of the show, and that is amazing,” Murphy finishes.

“The New Normal” airs Tuesday nights at 9:30 ET/PT on NBC.

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."