TV review by
Sierra Filucci, Common Sense Media
Drive TV Poster Image
Tense Lost wannabe chases high-stakes race.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

A mixture of people -- some good, some bad. Good people are asked to do bad things ... and they just might. All of the characters really want the prize money.


Lots of harsh driving, including car crashes and bumping other cars on purpose. Several guns; in one scary scene, a guy hunts a woman with a gun, and later there's a tense standoff between brothers, with one holding a gun on the other. A good character is asked to murder someone to stay in the game.


Boyfriend eyes his girlfriend's rear end salaciously as she bends over. Some revealing outfits.


Some tough talking, including "ass," "damn," and "hell."


Characters must check their cell phones for race updates, and the Nokia brand is always visible.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the characters in this action-packed racing thriller drive very fast and sometimes recklessly. Some use their cars aggressively against their competitors, leading to potentially scary moments. Other tense and/or violent scenes include physical attacks (a man is hit on the head with a wrench, etc.) and a confrontation between a man and his frightened wife. Some characters are compelled purely by greed, and many are cut-throat in their attempts to win. Meanwhile, good characters are asked to do bad things as part of the competition.

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What's the story?

Tense action thriller DRIVE follows a diverse cast of characters who are competing in a mysterious, illegal cross-country race for a giant cash prize. Each character also has something personal at stake in addition to the money, from a loved one's life to a shot at redemption. But Drive doesn't reveal everything up front -- what is new mom Wendy Petrakas (Melanie Lynskey) running from? Who's responsible for Alex Tully's (Nathan Fillion) wife's disappearance? Mixed in with the character development is lots of fast, hard driving, like when an Iraq War veteran and his girlfriend try to outrace a trio of Hurricane Katrina survivors -- calling in the help of troop-supporting truck drivers -- while Tully and parolee Winston Salazar (Kevin Alejandro) push their vehicles to the limit, trying to beat each other by swerving, bumping, and even creating their own roadways.

Is it any good?

The darker elements are what keep Drive compelling -- like when Petrakas is faced with the choice of murder or staying in the race. And with so many unknowns, curiosity compels viewers to watch. (Whether or not the show can stand the test of time and weed out its occasional cheesy moments is one of its unanswered questions.) Teens might be lured in by Drive's mysteries, as well as its focus on cars and driving. Parents may want to preview the show to see whether the violence, peril, and greed are appropriate for their kids.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about what this show has in common with popular car-chase video games like Grand Theft Auto. Do you think shows and games that feature aggressive, reckless driving affect the people who watch and/or play them?

  • Families can also discuss the ongoing popularity of America's "car culture." Why are so many people obsessed with cars and racing?

TV details

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