But the whole series started going really far downhill about season 3. It quickly devolved into a soap opera of wild side show freak storylines with zero character development.
Now, you might be saying, "Oh but it's just a TV show."
It is just a TV show.
Though I wonder how the creators (who are gay) would feel if Latter Day Saints took their culture and beliefs and reduced it to a series of inaccuracies for entertainment. And many of the mistakes were just plain lazy...
And the writing got really bad after season 3.
GeographyBill and Barb's old bishop makes several visits and invites them to come to their old ward, even though have moved. In reality, it's pretty difficult to become a member of a ward unless you actually live within the geographic boundaries or go to a local branch or ward that serves a different need like young single adults or conducts meetings in another language.
Mormons and polygamyContrary to Bill's assertions, there is no evidence that Joseph Smith had sexual relations with any of his wives other than Emma. It's possible that he may have fathered other children, because some of the women he was sealed to did have children while he was alive, but it's hard to know for sure. The ones who grew to adulthood and had their own children do not carry Joseph Smith's DNA, so we know he couldn't be their biological father. There were a couple of infants that died though. Since they don't have any descendants for us to test DNA, we can't establish paternity one way or the other. The LDS Church has an essay on Mormons and plural marriage here. One of FAIR Mormon has an extensive research on Mormons and polygamy, I recommend it. Looking for something from non-Mormons, but based in history and scholarly study? I recommend the PBS documentary The Mormons.
Missions in the Middle EastIn Episode 1, Tina Majorino's character says she wants to serve a mission in the Middle East when she turns 21. There are no LDS proselyting missionaries in the Middle East. In the 1990's, the Church officially established a policy of not teaching, proselyting or baptizing any Muslims planning on returning to the Middle East in order to respect the laws of Middle Eastern nations that prohibit proselyting of the LDS faith.
Mormons and Gays
The portrayal of gay Mormons isn't entirely inaccurate- but not entirely accurate either. While there are many Latter Day Saints who deal with hostile families in relation to their sexual orientation, others choose to marry a spouse of the opposite sex- even while openly disclosing their sexual orientation. Many gay and lesbian Latter Day Saints who choose to be active and get married have their children the old-fashioned way through sex, pregnancy and birth. (See Josh Weed.) The episode where Sarah interviews a LDS couple seeking to adopt where the husband is gay and the wife is mentally ill is not an accurate representation of LDS couples seeking to adopt. Most LDS couples who are seeking to adopt are struggling with infertility (a painful struggle on its own).