Beat the Clock

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
Beat the Clock TV Poster Image
Game show remake showcases sportsmanship, family fun.

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 15+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

The show intends to entertain rather than to educate.


Positive Messages

Kids see the contestants use teamwork, communication, strategy, and perseverance in the game show's challenges. Success is celebrated, and failures inspire encouragement from the host and the other competitors. Sporting behavior is extended all around throughout the games, and teams comprise adult and youth family members, so there's great camaraderie.


Positive Role Models & Representations

The contestants encourage each other and even cheer on their opponents. There's a general sense that having fun is the primary goal and winning is secondary.


Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Beat the Clock is a reboot of the classic '50s game show and pits teams of family members against each other in timed challenges for cash prizes. This family-friendly series has great messages about being a good sport, as the young contestants sometimes show their disappointment over losing but, with help from the grown-ups, come around to cheering on their opponents and redoubling their efforts the next chance they get. The games are fun to watch, and the contestants' experiences are reminders of the joys of spending time with family.

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What's the story?

BEAT THE CLOCK is a game show that challenges teams of contestants to complete various tasks within time limits to earn small cash prizes and the chance to play for a larger grand prize. Hosted by Paul Costabile, each episode brings two teams of family members -- each consisting of a child and an adult partner -- head to head to stack, toss, and unravel their way to victory in simple games that test their ability to strategize and work together. The team that accrues the most money earns the chance to complete one final challenge for the grand cash prize.

Is it any good?

The classic '50s game show gets another reboot in this lively series that greatly increases the kid appeal by featuring young contestants and their adult teammates. The games are relatively simple in structure and fun to watch, tasking competitors with tossing marshmallows into a cup held in their partners' mouths, for instance. In many cases variations of the games could be replicated at home with some basic supplies, willing participants, and, of course, a clock.

Game shows like Beat the Clock can be helpful in teaching kids about sporting behavior and being good winners and losers. This series doesn't sanitize young contestants' disappointment over losing a game, but it does show the players and the host redirecting those negative feelings into more positive determination for the next round. Another plus? The family member teams aren't limited to parents and kids; often they pair grandparents and grandkids or other combinations.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why being a good sport is important in Beat the Clock and in real life. Kids: Do you find that negative thoughts affect you in negative ways? Is winning always the most important thing in a competition? How does losing teach us valuable lessons as well?

  • How might you strategize differently than the contestants do in the games? How does the pressure of being up against a clock (or an opponent) affect your ability to complete a task? Do you find situations like this stressful, or do you like the challenge?

  • Kids: Is a prize always necessary for you to do your best, or do you give it your all regardless of what's at stake? Do you believe in getting participation prizes? In what way does the idea of everyone getting a prize affect your appreciation of a prize? Why is it important to compete fairly?

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love game shows

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