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Parents' Guide to

Friday Night Lights

By Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Poignant football drama scores; OK for teens.

TV Freeform , NBC Drama 2006
Friday Night Lights Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 12 parent reviews

age 18+

A Sex Show, Not a Football Show

I can't believe the reviews that suggest this show is perfectly fine for kids. They must be from teenage boys and the show's executives who think all girls are nothing but sex toys. We used to trust Common Sense for direction. Not anymore. Our teenage daughters (not we parents) are the ones who told us to let this community know the truth: the show could be really good, but they obviously turned to sex-sex-sex for ratings. You can't go five minutes without sex, sexual talk, and more sex. Strip clubs. Minors having sex with adults. Teenagers constantly hooking up. Strippers coming to perform at school. Never one word about the potential harm done (so I don't know where the reviews touting "positive messages" come from). Anyone who says this is just normal high school behavior has been brainwashed by shows like this. It's a lie. Every young person we know found it disgusting and sad — and no, they are not prudes. One question for any decent person who has watched this show: Name me one female character (except perhaps the coach's wife and baby girl) who is not portrayed as a sex toy for teenage boys. Just one. The adult nurse from Central America? The 33-year-old neighbor? Waitresses. A mother? Any of the girls in high school? Each and every one of them is treated by the show's writers as value-less sex objects. That's the common sense, and very sad, truth.
age 16+

WAY too much cleavage! The story line is basically about half dressed teen girls having sex with the football team

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (12 ):
Kids say (16 ):

Even if you aren't a football fan, it isn't hard to get caught up in some of the show's dramatic storylines, which include teen romance, strong friendship, personal rivalry, and family unity. For sports fans though, Friday Night Lights is full of football lingo and pre- and post-game rituals that have become part of high school football culture.

The show also deals with some weightier, more controversial issues, including underage drinking, racial tensions, murder, abusive relationships, and the serious risks involved in playing contact sports -- all of which are relevant to (and will probably interest) a lot of older middle schoolers and high schoolers. As long as these heavier topics are taken in context -- ideally, with some parental explanation -- the show is a well-executed drama for teens and up. Because, in the end, Friday Night Lights is about a whole lot more than just winning football games.

TV Details

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Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

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