Black. White.

TV review by
Larisa Wiseman, Common Sense Media
Black. White. TV Poster Image
Daring reality show for older teens, adults.

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

The boy is very negative about the race-swapping experiment and doesn't seem eager to learn anything from it; the teenage girl, on the other hand, has a good head on her shoulders, is enthusiastic about the experiment, and often questions the boy's behavior. When the teenage boy blows all his money on an impulse purchase, his parents give him a huge lecture about being responsible with money and thinking about his future.


Lots of strong language; "f--k" is bleeped, but "ni--er," "s--t", "bitch," and others are not.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that while this potentially controversial series contains strong language, it explores the issue of racism in such a way that older teens could learn valuable lessons from watching. The show really gets viewers thinking about what it might be like for a white person to have the "black experience" and vice versa.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byThe JP Show June 8, 2009


Where to Start? The should should be TV-PG instead of TV-MA. CSM overrated it. Language should be Iffy Instead for Red. Educational series could Be TV-14 but NO... Continue reading
Adult Written byMindypin April 9, 2008
Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008

it is a good show

it is about when people change colors to see how the other color lives

What's the story?

FX's reality show BLACK. WHITE. takes a black family and a white family, "changes" their race through the use of makeup and hairpieces -- the black family becomes white, and vice versa -- and brings them together to live in the same house. The purpose of the experiment (which is executive produced by rapper/actor Ice Cube, among others) is to get whites and blacks to see the world through each other's eyes and then discuss their experiences with one another. Each family -- the African-American Sparks family and the Caucasian Wurgels -- includes a mother, father, and teenager. As is to be expected, not everyone is enthusiastic about the experiment, which creates some friction right from the start. As the various family members do things like going to a slam poetry group, attending seminars about racial differences, working as a bartender in a white neighborhood, or simply walking down the street in a black neighborhood, they're all in for some stunning revelations.

Is it any good?

It's encouraging to finally see a reality show with good intentions and a serious message, as opposed to all the drivel out there meant simply to entertain (or disgust) viewers. The show's conclusions about basic racial differences may not exactly surprise most viewers; what's truly surprising are some of the things the participants had never thought about -- or had always just assumed -- concerning the other race.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about racism and how it affects the way we perceive things. Do you think black people interpret white people's actions a certain way because they expect to be discriminated against? Do white people act a certain way around blacks because of stereotypes? Have you ever been discriminated against because of your race? How did it make you feel? Another discussion topic could be how family members treat one another on the show -- whether within each family or across the two families. What are some examples of when they're supportive and understanding? What are some examples of when they're insensitive toward each other? Is any of it racially motivated?

TV details

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