American Guns

TV review by
Matt Springer, Common Sense Media
American Guns TV Poster Image
Macho but mild reality series set in a gun shop.

Parents say

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Kids say

age 11+
Based on 1 review

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

As a family-run small business, the Gunsmoke shop depicted in the series provides a good example of entrepreneurship and the value of hard work. Some "macho" behavior, including the reduction of women to specific gender roles.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Although some may question their choice to sell so many weapons so enthusiastically, the characters on the series are a positive family example that represent hard work and dedication.

Violence

While there is no bloodletting on the series, nearly every scene is focused around firearms -- buying collectible guns, selling guns to others, and firing guns at targets to test them and enjoy the sport recreationally.

Sex

The only females on the series dress somewhat provocatively and are viewed only in the context of their gender, for example, "She may look pretty but she knows how to use a gun."
 

Language

Words like "damn" and "hell" are frequent; stronger words such as "f--k" and "s--k" are bleeped. The people on the series are depicted as coarse, tough gun salesmen and machinists with language to match.

Consumerism

The show takes place at a large gun shop; various makes and models of firearms are discussed in detail.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Occasional social drinking and smoking depicted on screen.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this reality series provides an inside look at the operations of a gun store, with a heavy emphasis on "macho" men and their occasionally coarse behavior and language (including bleeped "f--k" and "s--t"). More than any of the people featured, guns are often the real star of this show, and the show could be interpreted as glorifying firearms and violence. The show does provide a largely positive and informative look at the inner workings of a small independent business and a historical and mechanical perspective on the firearms it depicts.

User Reviews

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Teen, 13 years old Written byJordanFireStar June 11, 2017

Excellent movie/documentary/guide (Whatever you want to call it)

Very good and interesting, has a lot of good guns to learn about. Also don't listen to common sense media's 14+. The only concern I gave it for... Continue reading

What's the story?

Located outside Denver, Colorado, Gunsmoke is considered one of the premiere firearms facilities in the world. They sell every kind of gun you can imagine, from high-powered automatic rifles to antique pistols dating back hundreds of years. AMERICAN GUNS follows the Wyatts, the family owners of Gunsmoke, as they attend to the day-to-day business of buying and selling guns upon guns. Whether it's building a custom weapon for a high-end collector, talking a rich Texan out of his antique rifles for a song, or managing the sales team back at the store, this is a family that lives and breathes guns.

Is it any good?

American Guns belongs to a specific subgenre of reality series -- the family business show. Whether it's baking cakes, building custom motorcycles, or buying and selling firearms, the real story on each series is the family dynamic that fuels these unique businesses. American Guns actually strikes a good balance between moments of interfamily drama and the actual business they run.

When it comes to the business of their store Gunsmoke, there's no question that these are people who live and breathe firearms. Knowing the very real violence that is often committed with guns, it can be hard to relate to their enthusiasm. Fortunately there are angles explored beyond just the glorification of weaponry, whether it's the historical background of classic guns or the engineering challenges involved in building custom guns. Whether you're a pacifist vegan or a meat-eating hunter, the Wyatts' passion and knowledge for their business makes American Guns a compelling watch.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the show's depiction of its characters. Do they seem like stereotypes in any way? Why or why not?

  • Why do you think the Wyatt family agreed to do this show? What do they get out of it? Is there any downside?

TV details

For kids who love reality

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