Parent reviews for A Series of Unfortunate Events

Common Sense says

Exceptional, spooky book adaptation is best for tweens.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 55 reviews

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 197 reviews
Parent Written byKristina D. April 5, 2018

Season 2 not good for younger kids!

OK, I have signed up for Common sense media just to write this one review. My kids loved the first season. A little spooky but not really too bad. But season 2! Spoilers- there is talk of burning people at the stake, scary hospitals with rusty medical tools and almost cutting off the head of one of the main characters. The Hostile Hospital episode reminded my husband and I of American Horror Story!! Just know that Season 2 is NOT equivalent to Season 1 as far as age appropriateness!

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Parent of a 10-year-old Written byRobin S. April 10, 2018

Started out well, second season is disappointing

My kids age 10, 14, and 17 all enjoyed the first season and I was so pleased to find something that was appropriate and entertaining we could watch as a family. When the second season was available, I expected more of the same. So disappointed with the direction they went. Numerous sexual induendos and frequent alcohol use takes this from fun to uncomfortable and no longer a family show.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Parent of a 16-year-old Written byJWilliams303 January 13, 2017

As a fan, I warn you not to watch this show!

If you too are a fan, I hope you got that reference and that I don't actually mean that...It's so great to see the Baudelaires, and even Count Olaf, once again! A Series of Unfortunate Events were books that I loved reading growing up (aside from Harry Potter and the Narnia books). I ended up reading the books again when I heard about Netflix bringing the books to life. I did love the film adaption that came out in 2005, but sadly they never finished the series. Now that they brought it to Netflix and smartly making a couple books for each season, we'll be able to see the whole series played out on screen. From how the first season is, they have each book put into two episodes (8 episodes for this season from the first 4 books). I was hoping since they were making each book into two episodes, they would bring more of the book to life and not cut shortly like the movie did (understandably). To my delight, they are very spot on with the books! Not only did they stick with what the books did, but they also chose a great cast; the Baudelaires, Mr. Poe, Count Olaf, his troop, and even Lemony Snicket, our humble narrator, who is portrayed by Patrick Warburton. It's a little dark humored for some younger kids but nothing too grim. The series is known for its dark humor and its overwhelming tone, and it plays that very well. Even Mr. Snicket warns the audience about the story he tells and what all to watch out for when it comes to the Baudelaires. This is a must see for fans and newcomers alike!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Violence & scariness
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Adult Written byUncle_Tai December 18, 2017

Might be too creepy for young kids

An excellent adaptation of the well-loved book series. It's great for the whole family, though some scenes may be distressing for your young children. Specifically, one episode has a scene that shows a corpse with a discolored eye and skin, which may be particularly disturbing to young viewers. Other than that, violence is minimal. A knife is brandished threateningly, and the villain chases the children with it, though no violence ensues. Overall, this is a great show with humor teens and up will appreciate.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byCori M April 7, 2018

Watch out in season 2

Count Olaf squeezes the breast of a male dressed as a woman, for an obvious amount of time, and the scene focuses on this for the long 8 seconds, while hoping your young child doesn’t notice. This world is full of groping men, why put this in a children’s tv show?!?

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written byeboepple April 30, 2020

Trash

Books were trash. Video worse trash. Wouldn't allow anyone of any age to turn it on in my home.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Adult Written bylyd.tich November 6, 2019

super mysterious, love it!

I read some of the books and i love the plot twists whenever i finish one book i can't wait until library time at school to get the next one! A bit 10+ but 9 year olds would love it too! Great show!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Parent Written byTamiebonto July 18, 2019

Dont, "Look away!" Lol, you'll get it if you listen to the theme song. Pretty good

Pretty good. Can be kinda gruesome though.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Adult Written byRobert K. April 7, 2018

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Parent of a 9 and 11-year-old Written byheather13 June 1, 2017

Great retelling

My 11-year-old has read all of the books and seen several film variations of the series and said this one is excellent. It varies a bit from the series, however as a parent who hasn't read any of the books I've found it fantastically funny and very interesting. I actually look forward to the next episode. My 8-year-old has found it to be a slight bit harder to watch although she's just recently begun reading the series. As far as redeeming qualities (other than entertainment value) there are plenty of new definitions that are introduced, and we've expanded upon the elements that are discussed in the series (like "dramatic irony"). All in all I've found it to be quite fun and very much in line with the level of violence (which is not exceptionally gory although people die) that one would expect from the books.
Parent of a 10-year-old Written bychildinhisimage March 4, 2017

Way too dark - and creepy references to inappropriate adult/child relationships

This show is very dark. My husband and I watched the first two episodes. In these two episodes alone, there are several references to inappropriate adult/child relationships. For example, in episode 1, one of Olaf's friends/henchmen say, "Aren't you a pretty little girl?" in a very insinuating creepy way to the girl baby, Sonny. It was very creepy and concerning.
In episode 2, it becomes apparent that Count Olaf has a secret plan to legally marry Violet, who is only 14 years old. It is clear that he wants to marry her to gain the children's fortune. However, there are a few instances where he calls her "pretty" while referencing the upcoming marriage. It isn't just that he calls her pretty, but there is an implication in the way he says it. Also, at one point, Count Olaf tells the brother "I can touch whatever I want," and then he pointedly puts his hand on Violet's shoulder. Again, there is an implication there. Overall, we found it way too dark and inappropriate for even us to continue watching, let alone our children. Parents, please exercise caution with this show.
Adult Written byjustagiantdork June 12, 2020

Way too dark for little ones

I grew up loving this book series. I was 7 when I read them, and looking back on it I was too young to. This series should have never been rated PG imo. It literally has murder, sexual content and a lot of dark stuff. The books are great and the series as a whole is amazing but it’s not for kids

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Adult Written bySoph_388 May 6, 2020

FAIRLY AWESOME

I think It's awesome! Me and my children have read the books, but this is slightly different.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Violence & scariness
Consumerism
Adult Written byBBGum April 15, 2020

Funny in a Dark Way

I started reading the books in fourth grade, then I realized their was this show, so after reading each book, I’d watch the two episodes about the book. And I enjoyed doing this. Then my brother became a fan too, and we watched together. It is a little dark, and there are some older themes, but nothing kids will notice. Some episodes younger kids will find scary, so it’s definitely not for most elementary school students. Probably best for tweens, or mature 9 or 10 year olds. It gets darker as the series goes along, it the comedy stays too. And I think there is slight swearing, I don’t quite remember. Count Olaf does drink but it goes with his character.

It’s a great introduction for kids to the drama/mystery/horror genre of television, which is awfully popular these days. I enjoy them and hope you do too.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Violence & scariness
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Adult Written bytitedog April 5, 2020

A Series of Unfortunate Events: A Dark Paradox

A Series of Unfortunate Events is truly a masterpiece. Note that this show does contain some mature-ish themes, but it is pretty tame.

I personally have never read the books, but the show is about 3 orphans in the "Baudelaire" family, who's house was burnt down, and their parents were killed. A man who is a friend of the parents, known as Count Olaf, who wants to pursue a career in acting, but is also in a secret society known as VFD.

Count Olaf takes them in, and seems like an okay man, but is soon to be revealed a terrible person. The Baudelaire's eventually escape him, but he finds them everywhere they go, always with a new disguise (which are hilariously awful).

I don't want to spoil too much, but i've already watched the show once, and during this rough time i'm watching it again. It is a little dark for a PG show, but i'm into dark shows, so this really appeals to me. Neil Patrick Harris (the actor for Count Olaf), is such a great actor, and I love his performance throughout this series! Now, enough talk, go watch it for youself!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byJustin Gonzales April 4, 2020

Worst series ever

Jim Carrey would have been better in this series as he was in the movie Neil Patrick Harris plays the worst count olaf ever it was a very big disappointment
Parent of a 10-year-old Written byCare86 July 14, 2019

Hard to find appropriate shows to watch with my 10 year old

My daughter and I love watching this when my younger two are asleep. Entertaining for adults and 10 year olds!
Parent of a 9, 11, and 14-year-old Written byTgemmer July 3, 2019
Parent of a 5, 8, and 10-year-old Written byFEC June 13, 2019

Absolutely blown away

This is my absolute all time favourite series!!!! There are moments of violence and murder but not too much. It is more the thought. There are also mentions of prgnancy and relationships.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Violence & scariness
Adult Written bylapc4 May 21, 2019

Not the Usual History

If you are going to see this serie you need to know before hand that it's not a happy history where the main characters live happily ever after, but is a tragic history disguised as a children tale. Even if it looks like it's made for children, in my view it has a lot of references that only an adult is able to understand. The developing of the drama is very good, intriguing, entertaining and gripping. All in all, it's not the kind of usual family series you would watch together, but I feel that that's what makes it good.

Pages