Parents' Guide to


By Kari Croop, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 18+

Guilty-pleasure soap injects sex into Arthurian legend.

TV Starz Drama 2011
Camelot Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

Community Reviews

age 18+

Based on 4 parent reviews

age 16+


I watched nearly the whole thing at 17. I really like Jamie Campbell Bower (Arthur) as Jace Wayland (The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones), Anthony Hope (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street), and as the lead singer of his rock band, Counterfeit, so I said "Hey, why not" and watched it. The sex scenes are gratuitous, to say the least. I felt mildly uncomfortable for some of the first episode. You can easily skip over these though, they're not super relevant. I'd say the amount of violence makes sense considering the legend, era, and plot. It's not particularly gory. If you've seen Hostel, Final Destination, or anything like that, don't expect to be grossed out. It's lighter than some other movies and shows I've seen so it's alright. Too much for a seven-year-old, probably not too much for a thirteen-year-old. The plot is okay. Not bad, not good. I'll admit that some of the drama wasn't all that enticing. As I said, I watched this mostly for an actor I liked. The other actors were quite good. Not the best but thoroughly convincing. One of the complaints I read was about who plays Arthur.I am well aware people are used to seeing rather unrealistic people as heroes but Jamie's Arthur was considerably more "historically accurate" than a short-haired, bulkier man would have been. I put this in quotes considering most tellings of this tale aren't striving for exactly historically accurate. It makes perfect sense considering the lack of indoor plumbing that his hair would be relatively unkempt. It was a stylistic choice. Plus, you don't want to that actor with shorter hair, his ears are slightly too large and he looks very strange that way. Plus, that length gives the opportunity for Arthur in man buns and I think that's great. Despite the sex and violence, I'd say Arthur as a character isn't too bad of a role model. He's courageous and kind. While his affair with a soon-to-be-married woman wasn't a good decision, it shows that even good guys make bad decisions. Also, I think that Arthur respects women more than some of his counterparts, which is a good thing for everyone to see. Overall, I wouldn't recommend it to families with young children but a teenager alone during the weekend might like it well enough.

This title has:

Great role models
Too much sex
age 18+

Sex substitutes for plot

A lot of people believe that Starz has a rule that all its shows must contain sex scenes, regardless of whether they're necessary. I don't know whether it's true or not, but Camelot certainly lives up to the stereotype. I was only able to watch a bit of this show before giving up on it because it really felt like the non-sex stuff was just filler before getting to "the good bits". If you want a more rewarding - doesn't matter if you're a parent with kids or a single adult - take on the Arthurian legend, watch the more family-friendly Merlin. Interestingly, Merlin (whose run overlapped with that of Camelot) lasted for 5 highly rated seasons and only ended because they ran out of story. Camelot was canned after 10 episodes. I think the math is easy to work out on this one.

This title has:

Too much sex

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (4):
Kids say (6):

Whether a seductress is sporting an on-trend smoky eye or a villain is declaring "f--k this," Camelot isn't aiming for historical accuracy. (And, yes, both things actually happen in the first episode.) But for all of its technical shortcomings, Camelot plays just fine as escapist fantasy fare for willing adults whose only expectations are to be entertained. Oh, and parents, be warned: This is nothing like The Sword in the Stone.

Of course, it hardly feels like a coincidence that the virtual unknown who plays King Arthur looks remarkably like Jonathan Rhys Meyers, whose petulant portrayal of a young Henry VIII helped propel Showtime's sexually charged costume drama The Tudors into must-see territory. And although Fiennes isn't the Merlin we've come to expect -- there's no pointy hat or long, wispy beard to speak of -- his performance makes it pretty clear that he's in on the joke.

TV Details

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