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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Becker is cynical and insensitive, but the show also presents strong loyalty among co-workers and friends. Characters are of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds; some are disabled. The show tackles issues surrounding underserved communities, including poverty and lack of medical care. Ethical issues surrounding medical practices are also dealt with; boundaries are pushed to provide health services to the needy, but the medical code of ethics isn't violated. Becker is an outspoken atheist.
Violence & Scariness
References to violence, including gang violence, but all within the context of receiving medical treatment.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Contains sexual innuendo (which may go over the head of young viewers); many of the characters are single, so plenty of dating/relationship talk, too. Some making out, but no simulated sex acts.
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Mild: "Bitch," "damn," "crap," etc.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Frequent adult smoking and drinking. Prescription drugs are discussed within the context of a patient's medical needs.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Becker's main character is a grumpy doctor who smokes, drinks, and uses a lot of insults to make his point -- not exactly ideal role model behavior. But he also cares about his patients and does everything he can as a medical professional to help them live healthy lives. Parents should also know that this show addresses strong issues -- such as terminal illness, racism, and terrorism -- that may be too sensitive for younger viewers.
Is It Any Good?
This show both supports and criticizes the American health care system, introducing storylines like children who are successfully living with AIDS. There are also episodes about elderly patients unable to pay for medical treatment. It's in tricky situations like these that the usually bad tempered Becker demonstrates his softer, humanitarian side, going beyond science and reaching into his heart (and sometimes his own wallet) to provide his underserved patients with the best possible care.
Regrettably, these moments of genuine care are sometimes overshadowed by Becker's blunt and borderline-insulting commentary about issues like religion, homosexuality, race, and politics. But, political correctness aside, Becker's interpretations also serve as a platform from which controversial issues can be discussed. And it's in this way that this sitcom, like Becker himself, has something meaningful to offer.
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.