By Robert Yaniz Jr.,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Teens tell their real-life stories; challenging topics.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this podcast.
Gives teens the ability to share their own experiences. This can be eye-opening for listeners looking for some inspiration or simply to hear from a different perspective. But there isn't a lot of actionable content here.
Shines a light on teens who persevere through divorced homes, pressures at school, homelessness and other challenges. The show emphasizes strength of character, resilience, and hope as teens battle bullying, sexism, and climate change. It also demonstrates just how much agency today's teens have and their willingness to be true to themselves.
Positive Role Models
The teens featured on are all passionate, ambitious individuals with a strong sense of self and a confident demeanor. Many have their own hobbies, interests, and pursuits, including but not limited to entrepreneurship, activism, and the arts. They embody resilience, courage, and a can-do attitude, even in the face of adversity. Tweens and teens can relate to and empathize with the diverse array of voices and stories.
Every episode puts listeners in the headspace of a different teen. Shows deal with topics and challenges many tweens and teens are going through, but may not talk about -- homelessness, bullying, divorced parents, homophobia, and temptation of drugs and alcohol in high school. Teens featured are from various racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds. Mental health disorders -- dissociative disorder, depression, anxiety -- are discussed from teens who deal with these specific disorders. Some of the topics and the emotion which with the teens talk about them can be triggering or difficult.
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Violence & Scariness
Tackles real-life issues like the effects of climate change, bullying, homophobia and peer pressure. Challenging issues are talked about very honestly, which could be startling for younger listeners. One episode discusses self-harm, suicide, depression, and other mental health disorders with a warning at the beginning of the episode. Some of the topics and the emotion which with the teens talk about them can be triggering or difficult. Resources for help are stated at the end of the episode and teens detail what helped them.
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The show digs into what teens really deal with, and part of that extends to bullying and name-calling. Terms such as "freak" are referenced in the context of their stories.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Doesn't shy away from the real-life pressures teens face from their peers, including drinking and drugs. But it never endorses this activity.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Mic Drop is not afraid to be honest about what being a teen in today's world is really like. While the show is mostly appropriate for most tweens and teens, it doesn't shy away from reality, dealing with difficult and sometimes triggering topics like depression, divorce, peer pressure, mental health disorders, and thoughts of self harm. The premise behind the show is for real-life teens to share their stories "without any adult interruption." If an episode's subject hates school or has ongoing conflicts with their parents, that will likely be a focal point. Adults should bear in mind the raw nature of the content and offers an opportunity for co-listening and candid discussion. This is a show that allows teenage listeners to feel seen and understood. It does an admirable job of showcasing a wide range of young people from different background. The intimacy of their stories is further enhanced by the minimalist production, which plays more like a personal audio diary.
Where to Listen
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What’s It About?
MIC DROP tells "fresh stories from bold young voices pursuing their passions." Every episode focuses on specific teens and their relevant journeys and challenges. In some cases, they've faced harrowing challenges or come to stark realizations. For example, one teen turned to environmental activism when he realized his dream of becoming a farmer was at risk. Similarly, the show inspires listeners with stories of powering through adversity. Tween and teen listeners can listen to life told from their perspectives, without adult interpretations and adults listening can hear from the perspective of other teenagers their child's age.. It's a raw, unfiltered look into others' lives, giving listeners a test drive in the shoes of perhaps someone very different from -- or similar to -- themselves.
Is It Any Good?
This podcast offers a much-needed glimpse into the reality facing today's teens. In adolescence, most teens feel isolated and different, but Mic Drop celebrates those differences and helps teens feel like they're not alone. Teens featured on the show explore not only how to get through challenging times, but how the next generation can change the world for the better. With every episode, listeners get a glimpse into another teen experience. These stories are often inspiring – involving teenage entrepreneurs, artists, and activists – without ignoring the reality of the adult world. The lack of an external host only underscores the intimacy of Mic Drop's personal stories.
If there's one downside to Mic Drop, it's that it doesn't dive deep enough. Each teen has the chance to share their circumstances and their dreams, but their stories seem to end too quickly, without enough follow up. Regardless, the show does an excellent job breaking through misconceptions about being a teen. This extends to everything from the effects of climate change to bullying and sexism. Teenage listeners would benefit from Mic Drop mostly, of course, but adults who desire a better grasp of today's young people would too.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about how each of the teens featured on Mic Drop overcame adversity. When have you risen above a challenge, and how have you managed it? Did you have a support system or someone you could count on?
The show aims to give a voice to today's teens "without any adult interruption." But how can adults in your life provide valuable support and help you feel heard and understood?
Most teens feels isolated from their peers in one way or another. What are some key benefits to standing out among the crowd? Can listeners reconsider some of the traits they consider to be faults? What are some unique characteristic you have and how can you celebrate them?
Teens in the show mention challenging experiences and emotions, like depression and thoughts of self-harm, which are common mental health challenges for many tweens and teens. Do you have an outlet for your emotions when they become overwhelming -- dance? martial arts? going for a run? drawing? listening to music?. What does your body feel like when it starts to become overwhelmed by emotion?
What are some available mental health and wellness resources in your area or online that are accessible to you and your family or that you can share with friends going through hard times? Can you come up with a list of five resources you can have whenever emotions feel overwhelming?
- Release date: April 1, 2018
- Genre: Entertainment
- Average Run Time: 10 minutes
- Website: https://www.cbc.ca/radio/micdrop
- Host: N/A
- Publisher: CBC Podcasts
- Pricing structure: Free
- Topics: Activism, High School
- Last updated: July 1, 2022
Did we miss something on diversity?
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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