‘Parenthood’ Details: Monica Potter And Jason Katims Reveal How Kristina’s Cancer Storyline Originated

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As many fans have seen over the past few weeks (mainly because of an evident empty tissue box by his or her side), Kristina Braverman has started a heartbreaking struggle on Parenthood. On Tuesday tonight’s episode, “There’s Something I Need To Tell You…”, Kristina and Adam reveal that she has breast cancer to the rest of the family in the most unique and beautiful way. The short moment gave a lasting impression, ending the show perfectly. The NBC series doesn’t return for another two weeks, but luckily we got the chance to hear Monica Potter and Executive Producer Jason Katims chat about the Braverman’s in a recent conference call. How Kristina’s breast cancer storyline originated is truly remarkable.

“I actually emailed Jason over the summer. I went for my first mammogram in April, and I thought, I just mentioned it to my husband, “This would be a great storyline.” And knowing it touched Jason personally I just reached out and said, ‘What if we try to do a storyline on Kristina?'” Monica revealed. It’s very known by now that Katims has shared some of his real-life situations with the Braverman’s. “He emailed me right away and said he got the chills because they had been working on this storyline already, which is kind of cool. So I didn’t really know what it would entail, but I’m glad. I was scared, but I’ve also got a lot of friends that have gone through it and knowing how they write and as long as what Jason said, we throw humor into the storyline, that would be great. And so I was onboard as soon as he said they were doing it.”

But compared to perhaps some other storylines, Potter decided to not do any background research this time. “I talked to my friends, but as far as doing research and going online, I did nothing, only because I wanted to experience it as a person doing it for the first time. There’s so many different aspects of it and there’s so many different stories I can pull from, but having a fresh perspective on it and having those real feelings of being scared and hearing the news—for the first time.”

Adam and Kristina have definitely had their ups and downs since season one, but Potter admits she loves the little moments with Peter Krause. She looks forward to each scene because he’s just so great to work with. But as both Katims and Potter point out, this isn’t just a chapter in Adam and Kristina’s lives that will be dismissed immediately. “As the story progresses, there’s moments where it becomes more and more—I think reality starts to set in when this happens over time and the reality of what you’re dealing with and a lot of that has to do with not just the life threatening aspect of it, but also the logistical things. Like missing time at work for Adam. There are all these appointments. There are decisions about which doctor you are going to go to. All of these things; we’ll continue to follow them through that journey,” Katims adds.

For those who haven’t seen last night’s episode, get ready to witness (without a doubt) something that’s worth several Emmy nods. As said before, the writer’s of the show revealed Kristina’s struggle in a very heartfelt and real way. Something Potter would even agree with. “I love the way Jason wrote this episode and where it was staged and how they say it. It’s done in a place where you wouldn’t normally do something or tell people news like that. It was perfect. It was just great and so real.” Adding Jason, “How their family and children are responding to it is something part of the entire season that continues.”

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