'Council of Dads': Sarah Wayne Callies owns the screen portraying Robin’s conflicting emotions while grieving
NBC’s ‘Council of Dads’ is based on the struggles of a family, post the death of the patriarch. You might think that it’s a very common plotline for a family drama series. Well, that’s true! This isn’t the only show that deals with the sensitive subject of losing a loved one and grieving. But what this show has managed to showcase is how people not only adapt and adjust to the loss in a very promising manner but also how those changes make them more lovable. There is a certain level of depth associated with every character’s evolution and this article is aimed at highlighting one such character: Robin Perry (Sarah Wayne Cailles), Scott’s widow, and mother of five children. She might be a grieving widow but her portrayal of grief is nothing mainstream. She is strong yet tender, in control yet seeking grip over her life. The contrasting shades of Robin make her a woman many can look up to, especially while dealing with a loss.
As the one portraying the character, actor Sarah Wayne Cailles remains the star of the episode and owns the screen.
In episode 4, ‘The Sixth Stage’, we see Robin finally trying to move on from the five stages of grief. What they don’t say that there is also a sixth stage and that is of desire. Lest you assume that this is a sexual or romantic desire, the episode will make you rethink. Robin has entered a stage she defines as the sixth stage of grief, where she is seeking companionship and someone to confide in and lean on. The said desire is also to explore herself, move forward and be comfortable with her sexuality.
She not only starts talking about it with her best friend, but also wants to explore further. While most people would expect a woman in her place (or even a man) to continue grieving and hold onto the memories of the deceased one, Robin proves that to be able to move on and remember someone forever, one doesn’t need to go down the spiral of grief and loneliness. She seeks love and there’s nothing wrong about it. However, at the same time, she is also fearful of facing her own emotions, the changes that will come with a new person in her life, how she will cope with them, and so on.
This conflict of Robin’s emotions is beautifully portrayed by Cailles in her anxieties and dilemma, as she meets a new man on her morning run. In that scene of a few seconds, where she tries to reach out with her hands to Henry but is unable to, Cailles perfectly lays out the mixed emotions of missing someone she had for years versus someone she wants to be with and the hope that she does it right; it all comes out together in every microsecond of the scene.
‘Council of Dads’ airs every Thursday, 8pm/7c, only on NBC.