All parent member reviews for Downton Abbey

Parents say

(out of 18 reviews)
age 13+
 
Review this title!
Adult Written byKKoff March 3, 2011
age 16+
 

Could have used a heads up . . .

This really is a gorgeous period drama with all the twists and scheming you'd expect. The story is incredibly engaging and is beautifully cast. However, after reading Common Sense Media's review on Netflix, I felt comfortable with my young teenage siblings watching it with me but was very startled when the duke and footman do more than just "talk about their affair" (all that was stated in the review). There is a lengthy kiss between them. I'm very surprised that this normally conservative review site, one that I often count on to help guide media choices in our family, left out that information since many parents would either like to avoid such a scene altogether or would like to discuss it with their teenagers beforehand. I truly feel like you've let me down.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Parent Written bydad with teen February 17, 2012
age 15+
 

Yes - CommonSense has let us down here...

I agree with KKoff. Apparently two males passionately kissing is so normal as to not rate a mention on your site! Well not in my world, and not for young children or even teens. This is a brilliant quality series, but there is certainly plently of overt and implied sexual behaviour that will need explaining to children - Including the main plot line of a lady of the house sleeping with a guest (series 1), an overt homosexual encounter (series 1) and the lord of the house having an affair (series 2).
What other families should know
Too much sex
Parent of a 6, 10, 12, and 17 year old Written byLiving Aloha January 12, 2014
age 18+
 

Not really appropriate for my family, but maybe yours will enjoy it.

I have to be honest in saying I only saw the first episode, which was going great until the last 5 minutes. I don't understand why they needed to throw in a homosexual kiss/relationship to tickle our fancy! There were no other kissing scenes until this final one. It just seems like sensationalism to sell a product that would have been great without it! I really don't want my early teens watching this, and actually it makes me very uncomfortable myself. My children tend to get embarrassed with ALL kissing scenes, let alone this type. I would have to say I WAS looking forward to watching this series because of the positive hype surrounding it, but I feel that I need to make a stand for what I believe to be "not appropriate" material and will not be watching it. This may seem a bit prudish, but I just would like to see television improve and I don't think this will happen until people stop watching what they feel is inappropriate. I respect others opposing views, but this is just my own opinion.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Parent of a 12 and 14 year old Written byeasangus March 27, 2011
age 12+
 
My family really enjoyed this series. Sexual situations are vague and handled tastefully. There is some kissing - and a bit of it is same-sex, which is not a problem for my kids. Beautiful, absorbing, funny, surprising, dramatic. Lots of fun and escapism. Looking forward to the next season!
Parent Written byJenniferA June 18, 2012
age 10+
 

Great Show!

The show is pretty chaste despite its coverage of difficult topics. The homosexual kiss was a wonderful opportunity to talk about same-sex relationships and that they are perfectly normal even though the characters felt that they must hide it 100 years ago.
Adult Written byMomofthree3741 February 25, 2012
age 16+
 

Be wary of unedited UK version online

I think what we need to realize about this TV show is the strong possibility that there are some scenes in it online that are not shown on American PBS stations, hence the same-sex kissing not mentioned by commonsensemedia.org and other reviewers. Amazon's streaming video page states that each episode is the original un-edited UK version of the program.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Adult Written byHalfBloodPrincess February 17, 2014
age 10+
 

Trigger warning for series 4!!

To be fair, series four episode 2 did warn of "scenes of violence that may be disturbing to some viewers" but I don't really think that was an adequate warning for what came next. Warning: there are some spoilers ahead! I'll cut to the chase. A beloved character is raped in this episode. Although you only see her being attacked and dragged into a room and then afterwards, all bloody with her clothes torn, you can hear her screams and it's a VERY disturbing scene. I usually don't mind violence so i didn't pay too much attention to the warning, but as someone who has ptsd, I just couldn't handle this scene. This was also the season my mom finally let my 10 year old brother start watching since up until now everything had been appropriate for a ten year old, but after this episode, hes not allowed to watch anymore. The rape is also talked about in subsequent episodes, so if even talk of rape is triggering for you, you may want to skip series 4. I've only watched half the series, but I read online that the rapist returns to Downton Abbey so I don't think i'll be able to continue watching. As for the other series, i think the other reviews covered it pretty well. I'd say 10 is probably an okay age for the first three series, but even some adults may not want to watch the fourth.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Educator and Parent Written byballet warrior 20 January 4, 2014
age 13+
 

WARNING for series four

I love this series it is fill of many wonderful characters and is nice to all watch together. However, I would like to give a warning that in season 4 episode 3 there is a scene of sexual violence. Whilst not much is shown it was quite a disturbing scene that lead to many complaints in the UK that there wasn't warning on the nature of the violence. SPOILER ALERT: the scene is of Anna the maid being raped by a guest's servant. You see the man making suggestive remarks to her and then when she refuses him he attacks her. The actual rape is off screen. Anna decides to keep it a secret from all but Mrs Hughes, for fear Mr Bates may kill the attacker and be sent to prison again, and so the attacker is not brought to justice. Anna explains to Mrs Hughes how she feels dirty and Mrs Hughes explains to her he was a wicked man and it is not her fault. Hope this is a useful heads up as its definitely something I would never have expected to come up in Downton Abbey.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Parent Written byMoviegoer Mom October 6, 2012
age 10+
 

Finally, a worthwhile Family Watch---for ages 10 and over

We are watching this series with our 11 year old son and 13 year old daughter. Everyone loves it! There is truly a 'favorite character' for everyone, multiple plot lines, and many teachable moments. We have discussed history, the changing status of women in society, morals, loyalty, friendship, politics, and personal choices/boundaries with regard to sexual activity (same sex, prior to marriage, as well as affairs while married.) I am surprised to see parents here more concerned about a homosexual kiss than about violence and young mortality in WWII, including soldiers paralyzed, disfigured and dismembered. Even an "unexplained event" in the 2nd episode of Season One seems reason for more parental concern (**SPOILER** male guest dies in a daughters bedroom during a romantic evening. Tastefully handled. Very discreet visuals.) Homosexual kisses are on network TV, and part of the fabric of our children's lives. Be willing to discuss (or at least answer questions about) where heirs come from, why a man might want to visit a woman's bedroom, mortality in wartime, homosexuality, alcoholism, politics, classism, affairs with maids, family conflict, and the changing status of women in history. Seems to become a bit soap-opera-esque in mid season 2 but still the best "FamilyTV" that we've found for families with tweens. Enjoy!
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Educator Written bymbutler3690 January 23, 2013
age 12+
 

A Teacher's Approval (with some warnings for selective parents)

As a 7th grade teacher, I would definitely recommend this to my students. And just to throw it out there for parents who choose to be very selective with their child(ren)'s media exposure, there will be a few (less than 3) scenes where sex is suggested, homosexuality is a minor theme, and there are a couple of episodes where stronger language is used (at the moment I can only think of 1 and it does not occur until the second season) so perhaps some would say 13 is a better age for this show. But it truly is a testament to the idea of courage, respect and honor. This show does so incredibly well without having a sex scene in every episode or regular use of strong language. That is something that does not come by very often. I wish that when I have conversations in the hallways with my students that they would tell me how they love Downton Abbey as opposed to shows like Basketball Wives, Teen Mom and Vampire Diaries; all of which lack the class and decency that Downton Abbey has.
What other families should know
Great role models
Parent Written byStanleypuss February 12, 2013
age 13+
 

Review on Downton Abbey

Here it from a 9 year old. This show is AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There are various parts though that could strike a parent as inappropriate. In season 1 they have a servant and duke kissing and then the servant kisses the dukes hand many times. It was totally disgusting for me and my brother Ben to see! They do here and there in season 1 have curses and other bad language for younger ears. At a part of season 1 they have a man come into a daughter's room at a time when he shouldn't be there. They kiss and while they are kissing, the man has a heart attack and dies. His death is unseen, however he is shown dead, eyes wide open. Season 2 surrounds around the war and gets gory. A man goes to jail after he is heard guilty of killing his wife. His cellmate tries to get him in trouble and at one part, the man who kills his wife puts a knife to his cellmate's neck and threatens him. !!**SPOILER ALERT**!! In season 3 the man is found innocent and gets released. Big drama occurs when a daughter of the lord of Downton dies of eclampsia and it shows her dying which gave me nightmares. !!**SPOILER**!! The screen shows up close the daughter dying with her neck puffing out, screaming like mad, and stiff muscles. The gay servant tries getting close to another man while he is sleeping and gets caught trying to kiss him by a footman. The sleeping man wakes up, gets angry, and chases both out of the room. The show has many references to wine and beer and many people smoke. Kissing is not rare but no suggestive body parts are shown ever. Two men have a small fist fight over a daughter. In an episode, surgery is done to a man where they inject a pointy thing in his body and insert a medication. A chest is shown and the injecting gets somewhat gross but nothing suggestive once again. The role model is not great and they send along small positive messages but the show in all not including these parts I've mentioned, is GGRREEAATT!!!!!
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written byitalianscallion33 October 2, 2012
age 13+
 

Better than a lot of the stuff on TV, but still beware

Be wary of the homosexual kissing scene and the mostly-alluded-to affairs between one of the three daughters and the duke, as well as between her father and one of the maids. But really, the series is very low-key about sex. Even when married couples are shown in bed in the morning, they are always covered up. This show rarely registers as "steamy" for me, but I know it might for some parents with kids. There is a lot of drinking, but usually not to get drunk. It's more social drinking. One character is accused of murdering his wife, and he seems menacing enough to do it. His innocence remains unproven as of early season 3. I give this a 13-and-up rating not just because some of the content is stuff that's questionable, but because I don't really think kids younger than that would even enjoy it. A lot of the themes are adult not just in the sense that they are inappropriate for little ones, but also just in that they are not interesting for kids under a certain age.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Parent Written bysuperheromom August 3, 2013
age 13+
 

THE VERY VERY BBBBEST

This is one of the very best episodic tv shows ever made, I can probably watch this a million times and never get bored. Yes,there are some sexy parts such as kissing but most people can handle it.There are many role models such as Bates, Mary etc. I really don't know anyone who would not like these shows.(hope you think this review)
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written bySamanthamaster1 November 20, 2014
age 13+
 

One of my favorite shows!

I love Downton Abbey, because, I takes place at Highclere Castle in Hampshire, England and it's educational, teaching people about history and high class culture in the early 1900's, Season 5 I believe takes place in 1924. This is my favorite show besides PBS Newshour. I'm into the high class culture. It's also amazing to see highclere castle, the royal coaches, the dresses the women wear. I recommend this show for adults and children 13 years of age and older, the reason why I rated this 13+, because, I think most kids 12 and under won't really enjoy or grasp this show.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models