A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The show purports to teach lessons to white people about black culture, specifically as it relates to hip hop. Some of these lessons come through (and are beneficial), but the focus on drama, conflict, and competition drowns many of them out.
Violence & Scariness
Lots of verbal attacks, with intense cursing and physically threatening behavior. Possibility of some physical violence. Lots of rhymes about violence, including some about guns.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
There's a good deal of sexual language in the rhymes ("boner") and some sexual discussion about show contestants. Slow-cam close-up of bikini-wearing contestant. Blurred-out sex toy is used as a threatening weapon.
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Steady stream of expletives -- the harshest ones are bleeped, but they're still very obvious. Words like "bitch," "dildo," and the "N" word aren't bleeped. One contestant is punished for using the "N" word.
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Products & Purchases
Brands associated with New York (like Sabrett's hot dogs) are displayed as art in the loft. Some discussion of materialism, both pro and con.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Occasional heavy drinking to the point of intoxication. Beer and hard liquor bottles visible. Some smoking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this reality show focuses on a group of white rappers competing for $100,000 and a shot at fame. The subject of race is at the forefront, and some issues -- like use of the "N" word -- are addressed directly. Contestants swear almost constantly, both in general discussion and in their rhymes. Some rhymes include graphic (if lyrical) descriptions of sexual acts and mature concepts. Intense arguments beteen contestants include verbal threats and physical intimidation. There are occasional discussions of tough life circumstances, like being homeless and some sexual imagery, including slow-cam close-ups of one female contestant's body.
Is It Any Good?
The neighborhood challenge demonstrates the show's attempt to engage the racial issues involved in hip hop -- which are made explicit by the show's exclusive focus on white rappers. The crew behind the show (creators of the respected, now-defunct hip-hop magazine ego trip) has a history of deftly and cleverly interrogating racial topics with books like ego trip's Big Book of Racism. But while The (White) Rapper Show courageously takes on the incredibly loaded subjects of race and hip hop, the series' focus often (and predictably) shifts to conflict in the house. In one episode, for example, the group is drinking after a long day, and an intoxicated Persia starts harassing John Brown and challenges him to a rap duel; when he refuses, she sticks a dildo (blurred onscreen) in his face and starts calling him the "N" word. The ensuing drama takes up more of the episode's allotted 60 minutes than do the more interesting rhyming exhibitions.
While teens, especially hip-hop fans, may find some nuggets of wisdom in this show, parents should know that, as in most reality shows, drama rules supreme. Yelling, threats, crude sexual language, drinking, and general stupidity steal the show.
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Our Editors Recommend
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