Alaskan Bush People

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
Alaskan Bush People TV Poster Image
Loving family lives in rustic conditions; some arguing.

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 14 reviews

Kids say

age 10+
Based on 2 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

Themes include rural culture, survival, and trouble with the government. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

The Browns are naturalists; beliefs include respecting the land and living freely in the wild.


Rifles, crossbows, knives, and other weapons are used for hunting, protection, entertainment; animal attacks described. Shootings audible. Images of the characters' cabin being burned and their boat underwater. 


The Brown brothers go to town looking for potential wives. Men are sometimes shirtless.


"Piss," "damn"; "s--t," "f--k" bleeped. 


Chevrolets and iPhones briefly visible. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

The Browns don't drink alcohol; locals drink beer, hard liquor. Smoking occasionally visible. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the controversial reality series Alaskan Bush People is an adult-targeted show featuring a large, close-knit naturalist family trying to build a life in the outskirts of Alaska. There's lots of swearing ("s--t," "f--k" bleeped), some arguing, and references to tensions between them and the U.S. government. Weapons are used to hunt, fish, protect, and have fun. It's a bit much for tweens, but teens should be able to handle it. 

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byBushape July 17, 2016

Not what you think

I have watched the show since the beginning. At first I really liked the premise of the show. But after questioning certain things I did some research. I follo... Continue reading
Adult Written byBigfella76 April 23, 2021

Common Sense

I have watched most of the other Alaskan programs which show genuine people surviving in the wilderness but the Alaskan Bush People is something else, they lack... Continue reading
Teen, 16 years old Written byThatkidreviewer12321 June 22, 2015

Alaskan bush people

Great show Approperate for kids over 9
Kid, 12 years old February 22, 2015


This show teaches me so much. These people know everything about nature and they show every time it airs. The cussing is an issue, but all the super bad stuff i... Continue reading

What's the story?

ALASKAN BUSH PEOPLE features a large family rebuilding their lives in a remote and rugged area of Copper River Valley, Alaska. After the government allegedly burned down the Brown family's one-room family cabin to remove them from the remote public land it was built on, author Billy Brown; his wife, Ami; and their seven children are relocating to an even more isolated area hundreds of miles north to continue their way of life. With the help of their kids -- Matt, Bam Bam, Gabe, Bear, Noah, Snowbird, and Rainy -- who range in age from 11 to 31, they work as quickly as they can to build a new cabin in the unfamiliar territory before winter begins. They face lots of challenges, thanks to the unfamiliar terrain, extreme cold, limited daylight hours, and wild animals. They also must try to find ways to barter with people living in the few small settlements in the area for necessary supplies and, on occasion, medical care. It's not easy, and the unexpected twists and turns they face often force them to start over. But it's a life that allows them to enjoy living out in the wilderness on their own terms.

Is it any good?

Alaskan Bush People highlights how a family that has chosen to live on the remote outskirts of society is happy to work hard and live without modern conveniences to enjoy the freedom that comes with the lifestyle. They also showcase the skills they have to survive in the wild, including fishing with their bare hands, tracking and living among wild animals, building shelter without machinery, and using and reusing the little they have to meet their needs. Later episodes also feature them living on the water.

The show has faced its share of controversy, including allegedly creating narratives about the family being forced off their lands and the arrest of some cast members for stealing and fraud. Some viewers also may question how this isolation has affected their children (all of whom were raised in the bush) and their understanding of larger society, despite the Browns' claim that they're not ignorant of what is truly important in the greater world. Their life won't appeal to everyone, but it's certainly interesting. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the reasons people choose to live outside of mainstream society or in remote locations. What are the benefits of living this way? Drawbacks?

  • Do you think the way the family really lives its everyday life is being portrayed realistically here? Could you or your family live the way they do and be happy? 

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love reality shows

Themes & Topics

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