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Parents' Guide to

Doogie Howser, M.D.

By Matt Springer, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Prodigy juggles a career as a doctor with teenage issues.

Doogie Howser, M.D. Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

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Is It Any Good?

Our review:
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Kids say (6 ):

From its plunking synthesizer opening theme to the characters' hairstyles and clothing choices, DOOGIE HOWSER, M.D., is a true product of its time, the late '80s and early '90s. It's easy to be distracted by the show's dated look and feel, but Doogie was actually ahead of its time when it came to dealing with issues important to teens with humor and honesty.

Star Harris is better known today as the lecherous Barney on How I Met Your Mother, but this was his breakout performance, walking the fine line along Doogie's vast intellectual intelligence and still-developing emotional maturity. The show may not stack up favorably against some of today's strongest TV comedies, especially when it comes to developing a moral question and resolving the issue within 22 minutes. It can frequently feel heavy-handed in the way that many sitcoms from this era do -- episodes all too often end with the family gathered together and Doogie having learned an important lesson, a concluding moment familiar to TV viewers since the days of Leave It to Beaver. Still, there's no denying the show's good humor and strong performances, which make it eminently watchable even decades later.

TV Details

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