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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The show's central message is that crime doesn’t pay -- and that breaking the law invites a swift response from the Alaska State Troopers. That said, viewers will also see plenty of iffy behavior on display, so it's important to put it in the overall context of the intended take-away.
Positive Role Models
Though there are plenty of poor role models on display in the form of the people who get arrested, the troopers themselves are dedicated to maintaining order, doing the right thing, and helping others. They sometimes seem upset when discussing the impact that certain crimes have on other people or the environment.
Violence & Scariness
The threat of violence is always present when the troopers are investigating crimes. Some suspects get violent, some are arrested because they're fighting or engaging in other destructive behavior. Some incidents involve shooting (though occasionally these are drills). People are often upset when they're being arrested, and can be verbally abusive.
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Some words are bleeped.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Almost every incident seems to involve alcohol. People are shown drinking at bars and parties, sometimes heavily, and are often visibly drunk. Some of these people become very disruptive or violent and occasionally are seen driving or engaging in other activities that aren't safe to do while drinking. Troopers also investigate drug-related crimes; they often talk about drugs and sometimes find illegal drugs when they're searching suspects.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this behind-the-scenes reality series about the Alaska State Troopers features lots of incidents that involve drinking -- sometimes way too much drinking. There are wild, drunken parties and extremely drunk people causing trouble, getting into fights, driving, and engaging in other types of disruptive behavior. The troopers carry guns, as do some of the people they meet while on duty -- but in this case that's actually more a reflection of the state's hunting culture than its level of crime; there's little shooting, and some of the most violent events turn out to be drills. Expect some minor injuries and bloodshed, occasional bleeped swearing, and several graphic shots of decaying moose carcasses in the wild.
Is It Any Good?
Shows in this genre sometimes seem to run together, with a standard mix of fights, drunks, drug arrests, and suspects resisting arrest. Yes, Alaska State Troopers has all of this, but the series still manages to differentiate itself. First, there's plenty of snow; the winter cold is essentially an extra character in the state and is often a factor as the troopers respond to each incident. Then there are the guns. When cops in other states see a gun, they're instantly on alert; in Alaska, where hunting is a favorite pastime and guns are common, the troopers hardly bat an eye when questioning armed suspects.
Then there are the moose. Several scenes show the troopers investigating massive moose carcasses -- and expressing remorse that illegal hunters have left so much meat to rot. And, finally, there's the liquor. Almost every call involves drinking, whether it's a drunk driver, a drunken bar fight, a drunk friend causing a scene, or other alcohol-fueled mishaps. Alcohol is a common ingredient in most shows like this, but it seems to be much more of a factor in Alaska. Maybe it's the editing, but it does help the show create its own identity in an increasingly crowded niche.
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.