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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Some messages about prejudice and justice.
Positive Role Models
Characters act mostly out of self-interest, though there are some vague gestures indicating that bigotry is bad.
Violence & Scariness
Lots of guns and routinely dark and violent content. Fairies get massacred by soldiers, a dog-like creature gets strangled, there's a series of grisly murders.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Frequent simulated sex featuring male and female nudity.
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"F--k," "s--t," "damn."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters, including fantasy creatures, smoke and drink regularly.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Carnival Row is a mystery series with fantasy elements starring Orlando Bloom (The Lord of the Rings, Pirates of the Caribbean) and Cara Delevigne (Paper Towns) -- its mythical creatures like fairies are often placed in dark adult situations. The noir genre gives the show permission to dial up both the violence and the sexual content, so there's frequent gun violence, murder, nudity and simulated sex. Profanity includes "f--k," "s--t," and "damn."
Is It Any Good?
Fantasy stories involving mythical creatures can often function as allegories -- about how we treat the environment, for example, or each other. Carnival Row makes a cursory attempt at allegorical relevance: it takes place in a refugee camp, except in this case the immigrants are fawns and faeries. But the show's attempts at topicality are entirely surface level, as Carnival Row feels more interested in achieving "prestige TV" status, attempting to justify its indulgences in graphic violence and sex, instead of exploring the nuances of its political allegory. The idea of a dark detective show taking place in an incongruous setting has been done before (see: Pokemon: Detective Pikachu or the unimpeachable Who Framed Roger Rabbit?) and the best ones work on higher levels as well as just the surface.
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.