A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Coop & Cami Ask the World is a sitcom with strong messages about family relationships but iffy imagery about tweens' online behavior. The two titular characters are siblings who host a viral show in which they pose questions inspired by their experiences to their fans and, to some degree, adjust their behavior accordingly. They also share videos and live-stream from their house and their school. While the content isn't worrisome, the implication of the safety of this kind of behavior can be, so parents should use the opportunity to talk about real-world concerns related to internet use with their kids. On the upside, the characters' family is a constant source of emotional support and encouragement, and the members talk openly about their feelings. Themes about family relationships and friendship stand out in the heartfelt and funny content.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
COOP & CAMI ASK THE WORLD centers on middle-school siblings Cooper (Dakota Lotus) and Cameron (Ruby Rose Turner) Wrather, who team up to host an online show called "Would You Wrather?" in which they crowd source quandaries that arise in their lives to their viewers. Some of the surveys gauge human interest on topics that come up in their daily lives ("Would you rather go without your phone or your pants for a week?"); others deal with more complicated and impactful issues like how to cope with their widowed mom's decision to date again. When it comes to the juggling act of school, friends, and family, Coop and Cami find that Wratherheads can be great sources of advice, but it's the people closest to you whose wisdom is most valuable.
Is it any good?
Strong family-centric themes make this comedy series more than meets the eye, but families should be wary of the fancy-free messages it sends about kids' online activity. Coop and Cami are instantly appealing with their feisty but ultimately supportive relationship with each other. The fact that they work together on their show is a reminder that siblings don't always have to agree to pursue a shared goal. They have each other's backs as part of a greater family unit that has used the recent loss of its father figure to draw them closer to each other.
In light of privacy and safety issues about kids' online presence, the prominence and apparent unfettered access to Coop and Cami's online show may raise some concerns with parents. In posing their questions and uploading video imagery of their lives with nothing but positive and comical feedback, the Wrather tweens glamorize this level of media use while avoiding real-world dangers associated with it. Coop & Cami Ask the World makes for good entertainment, but it also invites (or perhaps demands) follow-up discussions with kids about online dangers to ensure their own safety.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the Wrather kids' use of the internet in Coop & Cami Ask the World and what dangers it could pose in the real world. Kids: Can you be sure about the authenticity of the people you meet online? How easy is it to misrepresent yourself in the virtual world? How can you protect yourself from unintentional encounters? What are your family's rules about the internet and social media?
Is Coop and Cami's relationship realistic, based on your experience with siblings? How do they work out their disagreements? How do they work together? How does their mom stand out as a role model? What character strengths do you see in her?
In what ways has the internet improved our lives? What are the benefits to making information and communication so accessible? How often do you use the internet to help with school work or other projects? Without it, where would you turn for information?
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