enter image description here Well the woman says: " want to hold him? He ( the child ) won't break ( woman says humorously ) , I don't want to raise him by myself (their child, she means) , and he's as much of you as he is me"

Then the man says: " I don't know if that's good on either side" And folks, I think I have to tell you another thing, that baby is an illegitimate child.

Source : The dialogue comes from a conversation between two characters of a TV series called Grimm. Season5 Epidose 3 , first minute , and its link, watch it online if you want : ( https://www.tvfanatic.com/shows/grimm/full-episodes/season-5/lost-boys/ )

  • As a side note: Maybe this is a California thing but to me it sounds weird and judgmental to refer to any child as "illegitimate". You can say something like "the child of unmarried parents", but in many communities the marital status of the parents is not important. More important is whether the child has supporting parents, period. Other parts of the United States might have different opinions, based on personal, cultural, and religious beliefs, but most television programs are fairly liberal.
    – Andrew
    Jul 25, 2018 at 15:15
  • Do you think the usage of this word " illegimate" is too intense, nasty or harsh? But I've heard sentences like this a lot : e.g. We're not peppering the world with illegitimate children. Or e.g. We refer, of course, to the existence of her illegitimate son. Or e.g.My study also indicates that in the lower classes the birth of an illegitimate child was a life-course event that was frequently followed by marriage.
    – a.RR
    Jul 25, 2018 at 19:00
  • This is a topic for an entire conversation. American culture has changed over the past 20-30 years, especially in the way we talk about certain topics. For example, it would sound rude and arrogant to say the lower classes. Instead we might talk about people who live in poverty, or who are economically disadvantaged, or something similar that describes but doesn't disparage their situation.
    – Andrew
    Jul 25, 2018 at 20:15
  • The term illegitimate makes it sound like there's something wrong with the child, which many consider a very condescending and outdated attitude. Instead just describe the child's parentage without insult. After all, many people in the United States and Europe choose not to marry these days, for personal reasons. While undoubtedly there are many who feel there's something wrong with this, that kind of dialogue is not common in the general media.
    – Andrew
    Jul 25, 2018 at 20:17

4 Answers 4


Even without knowing the specific context, we can still make a general assumption behind the meaning of the phrase within a show about supernatural creatures.

I don't know if that's good on either side.

  • There are two sides to the situation.
  • It's not clear if a side refers to two people (the man and the woman), two groups, or two races (humans and supernaturals).
  • That refers to the woman not raising their masculine child by herself.

So, to paraphrase, and depending on a particular interpretation, the man is actually saying one of the following:

Co-parenting him may not be good for either of us.
Co-parenting him may not be good for either group.
Co-parenting him may not be good for either of our people.

It may also be a valid interpretation to simply say:

Co-parenting him may not be good for anyone.

The details and reasons behind this conclusion are mere speculation without further information.

However, the woman is saying that she doesn't want to be a single parent and the man is saying he doesn't know if it's a good idea for their child to be co-parented.

Alternatively, the man could be responding not to the issue of parenting but to the issue of parentage.

However, given only the dialogue we have to work with, it's more logical to assume a continuation of the original topic of debate than a jump in the conversation to something else.

Note that one of the comments in response to a synopsis of this episode posted on TV Fanatic says:

And Kelly? What kind of name is that for a potentially badassed kid? How can he live that name down huh? Poor kid! Anyways can't wait to see Nick and Adalind co-parent!

While not definitive (we really need some dialogue after what was given in the question), this supports the idea that the man (Nick, I guess) is debating co-parenting. Either wanting her to raise the baby on her own, or wanting "full custody" himself.


This is from Grimm, Season 5, Episode 1 "The Grimm Identity". It is available on Amazon Prime, if you have a subscription, and possibly elsewhere.

After doing some more research, the context seems to be that the father is a "Grimm", a race of magical people sworn to protect humanity against certain other magical people (the "Wesen"). The mother is, of course, one of those magical people he's sworn to fight.

Since they appear to have fought each other in the past, and are presumably still some kind of enemies, co-parenting their child would not really be safe for either of them, or for the baby. Nevertheless, Nick says he's willing to give it a try.

  • @AmirhoseinRiazi You're welcome. As I mentioned yesterday, given this is the fifth season of the series, there is often a lot of story behind even simple phrases. The context is critical -- if you haven't been watching since the beginning you might miss out on the nuance that comes from all that backstory.
    – Andrew
    Jul 25, 2018 at 18:56

It appears to be a fatalistic or nihilistic reply - it could mean "neither of us are good enough parents". Such statements can often imply " ... and so we must try to be better", so they are not usually purely negative.

  • While this is also my feeling, I'm going to say the same thing here as with the other comment, that we really need more context to know for sure.
    – Andrew
    Jul 24, 2018 at 21:56

She's trying to tie him to his own child, because biologically, the child's existence is predicated on both their genetic material.

His response implies he worries that genetic material could be defective; either from her DNA or his. The presumption is that whatever traits concern him about their child, those traits are passed down through their DNA, as opposed to traits that are learned.

  • It's not clear if he's talking about his genetics or his personality. Have you seen this episode of the show yourself and can provide more of the surrounding dialogue? Otherwise, I would consider this just a rough guess.
    – Andrew
    Jul 24, 2018 at 21:08
  • "and he's as much of you as he is me" - Contextually, it seems clear that we're talking about a very young child, and the way this is worded implies to me that she's talking about the fact that their biological union was required to produce this young child. If you could provide a different context where a different situation makes more sense, I'm willing to entertain the concept. Jul 24, 2018 at 21:12
  • So you're saying you haven't seen the show? From the description, "The series' narrative follows Portland Homicide detective Nick Burkhardt who discovers he is a Grimm, the latest in a line of guardians who are sworn to keep the balance between humanity and mythological creatures, known as Wesen." The mother could be referring to the child's magical nature, not its natural DNA.
    – Andrew
    Jul 24, 2018 at 21:17
  • That seems to be an illogical stretch to my mind. "I don't want to raise him by myself" - I'm the mother, you're the father, don't walk out on us. "He's as much of you as he is of me." - It took two to tango, so you have a responsibility here, and I'm pleading against your fatherly instincts to raise your own child. His response, clearly implies that either one of them could have passed on a frighteningly negative trait. Jul 24, 2018 at 21:20
  • Well, this is why we ask for more details, otherwise it's just so much my-guess-vs-your-guess. I'm afraid I have to downvote this answer until we find out more.
    – Andrew
    Jul 24, 2018 at 21:31

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