On March 25, Netflix honored Cerebral Palsy Awareness Day with the trailer for its new heartwarming comedy based on Ryan O’Connell’s memoir, I’m Special: And Other Lies We Tell Ourselves.
Special follows a fictionalized version of O’Connell, the creator, producer, and star of the show, as he strives to accept and embrace his identity as a gay man living with mild cerebral palsy. He attempts to rewrite his identity and “take his life from bleak to chic,” according to the show’s synopsis, and to him, it requires lying about the cause of his limp. Instead of mentioning his disability, he tells everyone that his physical limitations are from a car accident in order to better fit in with those around him.
“If you could get rid of the thing you hate most about yourself, the thing no one else understands, wouldn’t you do it?” he says in the trailer.
The trailer shows the highlights of O’Connell’s journey to come, showing him gaining independence from his mother, interacting with co-workers, and exploring his sexuality as he gains the confidence to be himself.
“I was in the closet about being gay, and then I was in the closet about being disabled, and now no more closets,” O’Connell says.
The comedy is produced by Big Bang Theory’s Jim Parsons. It also stars Jessica Hecht, Punam Patel, Marla Mindelle, and Patrick Fabian.
All eight episodes, which are under 20 minutes each, premiere April 12 on Netflix.