BAPs

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
BAPs TV Poster Image
Rich African-American reality has stereotypes, pettiness.

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Stereotypes abound about members of the African-American community and of different social classes. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Some of the women are doting mothers. 

Violence

Fights are frequent and often lead to yelling, threatening, pushing, shoving, and slapping. A kitchen knife is subtly used to threaten someone. 

Sex

Contains some innuendo, as well as lots of references to being in relationships, getting married, and having children. Contains crude references to genitalia. 

Language

Words such as "hell," "crap," "bitch," and "damn" are audible; curses such as "f--k" and "s--t" are bleeped.

Consumerism

Lots of high-end brands and logos visible (Yves Saint Laurent, Mercedes-Benz).

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Lots of drinking (wine, champagne, cocktails).

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that BAPs is a reality show about an upper-class group of American-Americans who spend a lot of time engaged in catty arguments (which sometimes lead to physical fights), swearing ("bitch," "crap"; stronger curses bleeped), and drinking (champagne, wine, cocktails). It contains crude sexual references, stereotyping, and high visibility of high-end brands such as Yves Saint Laurent and Mercedes-Benz. 

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What's the story?

BAPS is a reality series about a group of upper-class African-American people in St. Louis. It stars Anisha Morrell, who was raised in a privileged home but prefers to date men who were not, much to the chagrin of her peers, including former best friend Kristen Gripson Jones, the well-mannered Gina Cheatham, Rai Rai Evans, and Riccarda Lacey. Joining them are Kendrick Evans, Jason Wilson, and Brandon Williams. Referring to themselves as "BAPs" (black American princesses/princes), they follow a code of behavior defined by their high-class upbringing and education. There's lots of drama, but throughout it all they try to maintain their reputations.

Is it any good?

The self-described BAPs say they're from celebrated families of the struggle (affluent and educated members of the African-American community), are proud of their high-class heritage, and claim to do their best to behave in a way that reflects their breeding. But much of the series focuses on the competitive, catty arguments among cast members, many of which seem contrived for reality-entertainment purposes. 

Cast members attempt to challenge stereotypes about the African-American community by pointing out how they don't wear gold chains, get tattoos, or eat government-issue cheese. Others spend their time comparing outfits and behaviors, all the while reminding themselves and others of their pedigrees. Some folks may find the show voyeuristically entertaining, but the messages it contains are troubling. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about stereotypes. Are the generalizations that some of the cast members make about themselves and people who are not like them appropriate? Do you think the cast members say the same things and act the same way when they aren't on a reality TV show? 

TV details

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