Roku is doubling down on a new original comedy from Schitt’s Creek writer Kurt Smeaton. Children Ruin Everything premiered earlier this year in Canada and now the series is heading south of the border to the U.S. and will be available on the Roku Channel for free. The series is set to debut in the States on May 13, but Roku has also secured a second season of the series with 16 half hour episodes, twice that of the first season. Season 2 will enter production later this Spring in Toronto and Hamilton, Ontario.
Children Ruin Everything surrounds that all-too delicate balance between life with and without kids for new parents who still want to live their own lives. Astrid (Meaghan Rath) and James (Aaron Abrams) are those parents, stuck between doing their duties as mom and dad to a pair of young children and still keeping up their old, childless lives. It aims to be a hilarious and at times heartwarming display of one of the hardest parts of parenthood: losing your old identity and life for a more responsible role as a parent. As much as losing that part is tough though, it comes with plenty of endearing moments that warm you up to the idea of raising children.
Smeaton shared a Primetime Emmy and Golden Globe win with his Schitt’s Creek cohorts in 2020, but he’s also received recognition as a writer in Canada for his work on Kim’s Convenience and The Beaverton. He also wrote 12 episodes for the Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs series for Cartoon Network. Joining him are Mark Montefiore of Letterkenny fame and sitcom super producer Chuck Tatham (Arrested Development, How I Met Your Mother) who acts as an executive producer here. Rath also executive produces with Beth Iley. New Metric Media developed and produced the series in association with Bell Media‘s CTV.
Children Ruin Everything was an immediate success in Canada in terms of its ratings. For the 2021-2022 broadcast season, the show ranked as CTV‘s number one new comedy with the biggest debut episode in the 25 to 54 demographic since 2019. Rounding out its cast are Nazneen Contractor (Ransom, Heroes Reborn), Logan Nicholson (Blues Clues and You), Mikayla SwamiNathan, Dmitry Chepovetsky (Killjoys, Departure), Veena Sood (Corner Gas Animated, The Indian Detective), Lisa Codrington (Letterkenny, Anne With an E), and Darius Rota.
Colin Davis, the Head of Scripted Originals at Roku, celebrated the release of the new comedy and the assurance of a much larger second season in a statement, saying:
It’s finally here! Kurt Smeaton, Chuck Tatham and Mark Montefiore have brought us a heart filled comedy with “Children Ruin Everything.” This story is universal, endearing and audiences will instantly relate with these characters. As the momentum driving Roku Originals continues, it is beyond exciting not only to share season one with audiences, but to also have the opportunity bring it back for a supersized season two on The Roku Channel.
Smeaton was also pleased that the show would be shared with a new audience, saying in his own statement:
We have no doubt that audiences on The Roku Channel will immediately connect with Astrid and James as they navigate the hilarious and surprising ways that having kids changes your life. We can’t wait to finally share the series with American audiences and look forward to bringing the talented cast back for more fun and chaos in season two.
Season 1 of Children Ruin Everything releases for free on the Roku Channel on May 13.