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Flack

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
Flack TV Poster Image
Uneven British PR drama full of adult behavior.

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Flacks must do anything and everything to make sure their clients' reputations are protected. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Robyn is good at her job, extremely flawed, unable to handle her personal life.

Violence

Occasionally people are slapped or pushed around. References to a parent's suicide. 

Sex

Strong sexual innuendo, including crude references, simulated sexual acts. Bare bottoms visible. Pregnancy and parenthood also referenced. 

Language

Lots of cursing, including "s--t" and "f--k." Rude gestures visible. 

Consumerism

References to designers like Hermes, apps like Tinder.  

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Alcohol, cigarettes, drugs (pot, cocaine, prescription pills), etc. are frequently visible and consumed. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Flack is a British series about a publicist doing what she has to do to protect the reputation of her high-profile clients. This means that there's lots of bad behavior, including drinking, smoking, drug use, and illicit sexual liaisons (some nudity is visible). Suicide and parenthood are also addressed. There's also lots of cursing, and a few physical altercations (slapping, pushing).

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What's the story?

FLACK is a dramatic series about a publicist who manages and protects the reputations of her firm's high-profile clients throughout London. Anna Paquin plays Robyn, a talented American public relations professional (known in the United Kingdom as "flacks") who tries to bury the scandals surrounding the U.K.'s biggest celebrities. Under the direction of inscrutable boss Caroline (Sophie Okonedo), she works tirelessly alongside colleague and friend Eve (Lydia Wilson) to swiftly and quietly handle each crisis that comes their way.  Also assisting her is brand-new, and rather inexperienced, intern Melody (Rebecca Benson). Robyn works nonstop to get her clients' lives under control before they become public relations disasters, but she can't seem to get a grip on her private life. As a result, she does what she can to hide her own dysfunctions from the people closest to her, including her sensitive sister Belle (played by Meghan Treadway), and her partner, Sam (Arinzé Kene). 

Is it any good?

This knotty, uneven series features what's now a common tale: a strong woman who is great at her job but manages to sabotage her own life every step of the way. Robyn, who was unable to control the events in her troubled family's past, commits herself to trying to control everyone else's life, and isn't afraid to lie, bribe, or engage in other behaviors to do it. It's billed as a dramatic comedy in the United Kingdom, but stateside viewers may not appreciate Flack's sometimes subtle, often abrasive humor. Meanwhile, it often feels as if it is trying too hard to insert Robyn's personal struggles within the conflicts created by her clients. Nonetheless, viewers who stick with it will find the attempts to "fix" each public relations disaster filled with some entertaining dramatic tension. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why public relations specialists are called "flacks." Where do you think that term came from? Does PR sound like an interesting career? 

  • Flack shows people engaging in lots of risky behaviors, including sex and drug use. What does showing these behaviors add to the story (if anything)? Can the stories here be told without showing them? 

TV details

For kids who love drama

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