90210 TV Poster Image


Famous ZIP code gets an edgy, entitled remake.
Popular with kids
  • Network: CW
  • Genre: Drama
  • Release Year: 2008

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Lots of lying, backstabbing, break ups, and hook ups. Although overall it's an unrealistic, glamorized portrayal of teens, it also presents some real issues that teenagers deal with, including addiction, racism, teen pregnancy, academic cheating, and peer pressure.

Positive role models

Many (but not all) of the characters are wealthy and materialistic. Not all parents hold their kids accountable for their actions. On the positive, cast and characters are more diverse than original show.


Occasionally cast member punch each other in the face. Others shove, push, wrestle, and slap each other. Images from violent video games visible.


Some strong sexual innuendo, including strong visual references to teens performing oral sex. Frequent scenes of teens kissing/making out. Storylines include cheating, one-night stands, and dealing with an unexpected pregnancy. Navid's father is a major porn film producer; child pornography is discussed (no graphic footage is shown).


Language includes words like "ass" and "bitch."


Brands like Chanel and Mercedes-Benz are prominently visible. Products like Dr. Pepper also get obvious placement. The series features music from various up-and-coming bands, like Tilly and the Wall. Some tie-in products (nail polish, etc.) are available.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Lots of underage drinking visible, at bars and at home. Grandmother Tabitha appears to be an alcoholic. One character has a drug problem and is shown buying pills and engaging in some negative behavior as a result of her addiction.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this spin-off of '90s teen sensation Beverly Hills, 90210 is edgier than the original series -- but just as soapy and unrealistic. Along with over-the-top opulent lifestyles, rampant materialism, and constant relationship issues, it prominently features behavior like underage drinking, promiscuity, and substance abuse. There's also lots of strong sexual innuendo and iffy language ("bitch," "ass"). Themes like pornography, pregnancy, and other mature issues are also part of the plotlines.

What's the story?

Almost 20 years after Brenda and Brandon Walsh first arrived in Southern California in Beverly Hills, 90210, a new generation of Midwest transplants is following in their footsteps. The Wilson family -- teens Annie (Shenae Grimes) and Dixon Wilson (Tristan Wilds) and parents Harry (Rob Estes) and Debbie (Lori Loughlin) -- arrive from Kansas to move in with Harry's aging mother, boozy former actress Tabitha (Jessica Walter). Living in the trendy new ZIP code is both exciting and challenging for Annie and Dixon as they build friendships and gain enemies among their good-looking, privileged classmates at West Beverly High -- including spoiled Naomi Clark (AnnaLynne McCord), popular lacrosse player Ethan Ward (Dustin Milligan), aspiring journalist Navid Shirazi (Michael Steger), free-spirit Silver (Jessica Stroup), and the troubled Adrianna Tate-Duncan (Jessica Lowndes).

Is it any good?


While edgier than the original series, 90210 still features the signature soapy drama that made the original show famous. Adding to the drama is the temporary reintroduction of former characters like Silver's older sister Kelly Taylor (Jennie Garth) and visiting drama teacher Brenda Walsh (Shannen Doherty). And like the original, characters cope with the ups and downs of friendships, romance, and other, more sensitive issues, including addiction, divorce, and adoption.

While they receive some limited guidance from adults, these young folks seem to operate within their own private universe. The show’s over-the-top plotlines and idealistic images of posh teen lifestyles will also be attractive to teen viewers. The show’s references to original series in early episodes make watching the show a fun, nostalgic experience for older viewers, too. But, as in shows like Gossip Girl, a lot of 90210's material is edgy and unrealistic. Sure, it's a guilty pleasure, but it's not a guilt-free one.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the messages that this show sends to teens. Are these characters -- both teens and adults -- realistic? Do they face relatable issues and deal with them in believable ways? What would the real-life consequences of their behavior be?

  • Parents, watch with your kids and make this show a teachable moment about issues like materialism and underage drinking and sex.

  • Families can also discuss how this show compares to other teen soaps, as well as to the original series.

TV details

Premiere date:September 2, 2008
Cast:Jessica Stroup, Shenae Grimes, Tristan Wilds
TV rating:TV-14
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of 90210 was written by

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written byvolleyballchick227 December 5, 2009

90210 doesn't influence our behavior or actions unless we want it to

I started watching this show when I was 11 years old and I love it! Parents need to understand that kids can't be protected from everything. They forget what it was like to be our age. I know better than to do any of the bad stuff that they do in 90210. Parents think that kids are immature and that we will think of these people as role models but that's not true. My parents don't control what I watch on TV because they trust me to have common sense. I've grown up watching these kinds of shows and I'm not on drugs or getting pregnant. I happen to be a smart, kind, and responsible 13 year old girl that just likes the drama of 90210. PARENTS: If you're smart, you will raise your children like my mom and dad raised me.
What other families should know
Great messages
Teen, 15 years old Written byDegrassiTNGlover October 14, 2010


Hate it. I didn't think that a show could become more Hollywood, glamorous, immoral or stupid. The acting is good, but the show itself is SO unrealistic. Even more traditional soap operas are more realistic with their storylines.
Teen, 15 years old Written byGeorgielovesbooks January 21, 2012


I love this TV series. Sure, they talk about sex, drugs and alcohol but by the time kids are 10 they know all about it. It doesn't influence them unless they choose to be influenced by it.