Grace and Frankie
Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin continue to illuminate the screen in "Grace and Frankie." (Illustration by Alice Yuan, Maryland Institute College of Art)
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Grace and Frankie

Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin continue to defy the odds as the leading ladies of this comical and uplifting series.

“Grace and Frankie,” the remarkably endearing comedy about two older women that form a unique friendship after discovering their husbands are in love with each other, premiered in 2015 and has just released its sixth season on Netflix. The series, created by Marta Kauffman, stars Jane Fonda as Grace and Lily Tomlin as Frankie. Fonda and Tomlin act in and produce this clever sitcom at the ages of 80 and 82, respectively, but with their everlasting energy and wit you would never even know. Throughout its six seasons “Grace and Frankie” has only gotten stronger, just like these incredible actresses.

Season 1 of the series begins the night Grace and Frankie learn of their husbands’ affair with one another. The two women, who formerly despised each other, are now forced to live together in their husbands’ Robert (Martin Sheen) and Sol’s (Sam Waterston) beach house out of circumstance. The reason the women disliked each other was their plethora of differences. Their personalities are practically night and day; Grace, is a Type A businesswoman and Frankie is a free-spirited artist. The two spend most of the season merely attempting to get along.

The first season of the series is also a time of adjustment for the four children involved who are just as shocked as their mothers to learn of their fathers’ affair.

Grace and Robert have two daughters together; Brianna (June Diane Raphael) is a hard-headed workaholic with a dark sense of humor and Mallory (Brooklyn Decker) is a soccer mom who settled down too soon.

Sol and Frankie have two sons; Coyote (Ethan Embry) is a former alcoholic who lives in a tiny home and Bud (Baron Vaughn) is a lawyer at Sol and Robert’s law firm. While watching the show you will learn to love and invest in these characters just as much as their parents.

In Season 2, Grace and Frankie grow closer and Frankie generates her first business idea: lube made from organic yams. Meanwhile, Robert and Sol get married in the hospital after Robert has a heart attack and Brianna begins dating one of her employees, an accountant named Barry (Peter Cambor).

Then in Season 3, Grace and Frankie start their first business venture as a team, selling a vibrator designed for older women called Vybrant. Everything goes smoothly until Frankie learns that Grace keeps a gun in the house and decides to move out. The pair ultimately realize they can’t live without each other and Grace agrees to get rid of her gun for the sake of her friendship with Frankie. Later in the season, Robert decides he wants to spend his retirement participating in community theater.

Season 4 is when the women start to feel old; Grace struggles with physical tasks like getting off the couch and Frankie starts losing her cognition. Instead of their children teaching them ways to overcome these issues, they decide to force Grace and Frankie to live in an assisted living community. However, knowing that they only need each other, Grace and Frankie work together to devise a plan to escape the community. In Season 4, the duo’s strength and friendship gets tested like never before and they pass with flying colors.

Moving on to Season 5, things get serious between Grace and her billionaire boyfriend, Nick (Peter Gallagher). Also, Bud is marrying the mother of his child, Allison (Lindsey Kraft), and Frankie is put in charge of the wedding planning. This leads to a massive falling out between Grace and Frankie after Grace meddles in the planning process. At the end of the season, Grace reveals to Frankie that she married Nick in Vegas.

Finally, in Season 6, released on Jan. 15, the women are forced to adjust to living apart after five years of residing together in the beach house. Soon after moving in with Nick, Grace gets stuck on the toilet and is too embarrassed to tell him, so instead she calls Frankie for help. This then leads to their latest business idea, a toilet that rises automatically called Rise Up. In order to get funding to create their new product, Grace and Frankie audition for the one and only “Shark Tank.”

Season 6 of “Grace and Frankie” is just as witty, heartwarming and irrevocably entertaining as the previous five seasons. It is obvious that Fonda and Tomlin’s talents have not been hindered by their age. It is truly inspiring to see a show where its characters thrive at various stages in life and the main protagonists are older women. This is not something we see every day when we turn on our televisions.

In order to find out the outcome of Grace and Frankie’s appearance on “Shark Tank,” be sure to watch Season 6 on Netflix and catch up on the rest of the show. You don’t want to pass up the opportunity to watch these amazing women build an exhilarating life together. They will teach you more about friendship and growing older than you ever knew before. “Grace and Frankie” only gets better with age. Unfortunately, the series has only been renewed for one more season, meaning Season 7 will be its last.

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