What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that although tweens will probably find this show funny, the teenage host’s repetitive use of phrases like "If you want to be as cool as Bobb’e, you have to do what Bobb’e says" will rub parents the wrong way in light of issues like peer pressure and bullying. The series also makes light of home videos that show people accidentally (and sometimes purposely) injuring themselves, so parents may want to talk with their tweens about the difference between laughing with someone and laughing at someone.
What's the story?
In BOBB’E SAYS, 13-year-old Bobb’e J. Thompson (best known for his potty-mouthed part in Role Models) visits malls, beaches, and city streets to share his personal brand of advice with the public. In each episode, Bobb’e offers cautionary tips against common mistakes that often lead to painful results ("Don’t Do Karate" and "Know When to Celebrate," for example). He follows up his suggestions with collections of video clips meant to illustrate each point by showing people hurting themselves while engaged in the same risky behavior he advises against.
Is it any good?
Between Thompson's grating self-satisfaction and the show's fairly monotonous content, this series -- while technically age-appropriate for teens -- certainly veers into obnoxious territory. After spending most of his life in front of the camera, Thompsons' natural ease with the spotlight is undeniable. But in this case his trademark wit and charm come across as egotism, thanks to repetitive comments like "If you want to roll like Bobb’e ... and be as cool as Bobb’e, you have to do what Bobb’e says."
And if you’re tempted by the promise of funny home videos and think those segments will make up for the rest, you’ll be disappointed to discover that the show spends more time replaying each video (four to six times apiece, on average) than it does introducing new ones. Though the show's format is unique and Thompsons' advice bytes (like "Pain Is Your Fault") are sometimes dead-on given the unfortunate video clips, ultimately you’re left feeling that the lackluster content was stretched to its limit to fill each 30-minute episode.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about what it feels like to be at the butt of a joke. Have you ever been laughed at by your peers? What happened? How did the attention make you feel?
What examples of bullying have you observed? Have you ever been a victim of bullying? What recourse do kids have against bullies? How has the Internet changed how bullies influence others?
How does celebrity status affect people? How might it change your values, your friendships, and your outlook on life?