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A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Four Houses features amateur interior designers judging each other's work for a $10,000 prize -- so the competition can get a little snarky. Occasional curse words ("s--t," "f--k") are bleeped and artistic nudity is blurred. The winners toast with champagne at the end of each episode. Expect some product placement as Better Homes & Gardens magazine and Dodge Ram trucks are prominently featured.
What's the story?
FOUR HOUSES features homeowners showing off their design styles in hopes of winning a $10,000 prize. Each episode features four contestants surveying each others' homes, which range from being homey and sophisticated to just all-out wacky. They then give the other designers' homes overall scores out of 10, and then rank them according to the home's originality, style, and livability. The owner of the house to score the best wins the cash and a chance to feature their house in Better Homes & Gardens magazine.
Is it any good?
The series offers a voyeuristic chance to look at the design aesthetics of people who aren't interior designers, but who enjoy exploring their own creative side when it comes to home decorating. While looking at the different designs, which range from beige and bland to colorfully over-the-top, is interesting, the fun also comes from watching the reactions of the contestants looking at them.
The scoring is designed to keep contestants focused on the designs rather than what suits their personal tastes, but this doesn't stop them from offering some rather obnoxious opinions about their fellow contestants' decorating choices. But this aside, the show offers some mildly humorous entertainment for reality design show fans.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about reality shows. Why do you think these contestants agreed to be on a reality show featuring their designs? What do they stand to gain or lose?
What makes good design? Who decides this? Are there specific rules of design people should follow when decorating a home or space? Do these rules every change? Who changes them?