Speechless takes the risk with a topic often considered taboo and — so far — delivers a captivating show. I am hooked. ABC does well with diversity and inclusion and I believe people will fall in love with this show right from the beginning. ABC does such a great job with all of its shows, but definitely the half-hour sitcoms; which don’t get as much attention as they deserve.  

Speechless introduces us to the Dimeo family. Their family of five has a no-bull, outlandish mom, Maya (played by Minnie Driver), a calm supportive dad, Jimmy (John Ross Bowie), a athletic straightforward daughter, Dylan (Kyla Kenedy), the smart middle child, Ray (Mason Cook), and the older son with cerebral palsy, J.J., played by Micah Fowler (who himself has cerebral palsy). This family is moving to a new neighborhood and a new school, that Maya thinks will be best for J.J.

Even though the story revolves around J.J Dimeo, his character is just as flawed and likable as the other members of his family. The cast is very well chosen and the acting is great. I could feel the family tension, the middle child syndrome, and the family bonding that reveals just how close this family is. The show gives off realistic family vibes — and it’s funny! It will give us all a moment to laugh about our own family drama. Minnie Driver as the mom, Maya, is brilliant. I feel like she’s everyone’s neurotic mother. Her accent threw me off a little with the rest of the family, but after a while, you just go with it. I was able to learn about and fall in love with each character in less than thirty minutes.

Like its predecessors, Black-ish and Fresh off the Boat, Speechless comes off real, satirical and true. This is not a focus on disability, but more about a family who happens to have a disabled member and the rollercoaster of emotions that stem from it.

Speechless will air Wednesday’s at 8:30p.m. on ABC. Will you be tuning in?


Catalina Combs is an aspiring film critic from California. She loves reading, writing, film, baking, music, drawing, traveling, Disney, and playing soccer. Her life usually revolves around all of these and her family. The oldest of six, Catalina tries to set a good example for her siblings. She graduated from Santa Clara University in 2010 with a BA in English Creative Writing and is pursuing an MA in Film. I also blog on WordPress and contribute to the websiteExaminer.com. Twitter- @tiggercraze | Facebook- Cat Combs | Instagram: @tiggercraze