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 Foursome is a teen-geared YouTube Red comedy series with excessive sexual references. Central character Andie is driven by one thing: her quest for sex, preferably with the guy she's been crushing on for years. She's guided in her efforts by her best friends, each of whom has a different perspective on sex (one is gay, one is very sexually active with Andie's brother, and one is a wallflower). Teens talk openly about sex, often using slang such as "sloppy seconds," "spank bank," and the constant desire to "get some play." The physical component is less graphic, although couples kiss (with much tongue) a lot. Language is sparse, and "f--k" is edited. While there are some positive qualities to Andie's friendships, the fact that she defines herself by her inability to entice a boyfriend is a worrisome message for teens in the audience.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
FOURSOME is the story of Andie Fixler (Jenn McAllister), a frustrated teen with big aspirations of finding a boyfriend despite her older brother's dogged determination to keep her chaste during her high school years. Every time Andie puts herself out there, Alec (Logan Paul) appears out of nowhere to body-slam any potential suitor in her sights. Even his friend Josh (Cameron Moulene) -- Andie's longtime crush -- is off-limits, leaving her desperate and dependent on her BFFs Dakota (Rickey Thompson), Courtney (Meghan Falcone), and Imogen (Brooke Markham) for advice and direction.
Is it any good?
This racy comedy is one part friendship and three parts suggestion that to exist in high school without having sex is a recipe for mockery. It's easy to like Andie's relationship with her slightly oddball peeps -- unapologetic Dakota, introverted misfit Imogen, and Courtney, Alec's college-age girlfriend who inexplicably spends all her time at her old high school. This foursome ("not the sexual kind," as Andie says) certainly doesn't fit any mold, and for better or worse, they're Andie's lifeline as she tries to find her way through the quagmire of high school.
But Foursome spends far more time on edgier topics such as drugs, sex, and more sex than it does on anything else, and that's a major pitfall for impressionable teens who would tune in. Beyond the implications of constant references to "getting some," "hooking up," "getting play," and so on, these teens' graphic dialogue can be shocking to the uninitiated's senses, and some of the slang may even introduce new terms and phrases to viewers' vernaculars. Ultimately this series begs for parental co-watching.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how Foursome presents teen sexuality. Does it reflect your teens' experiences with their peers? Is sex a frequent topic of discussion for them?
Why are adult role models conspicuously absent on this show? What aspects of your teens' lives still require input from you? What rules do you set to keep them safe as they take on more personal responsibility? Can any of the characters be seen as role models?
What shows or movies have you seen that paint teen life in a more positive light? Do you think teens get a fair shake in the media?
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