Frankie and Neffe

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
Frankie and Neffe TV Poster Image
Iffy behavior trumps positive messages in reality spin-off.

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

There are some tough themes here -- including drug addiction, domestic violence, and abuse -- but both mother and daughter want to heal old wounds and build their relationship, and they care about family.

Positive Role Models & Representations

They may not always solve their problems in the most positive way, but these women are strong and want to make positive changes. Frankie is also a recovering drug addict who has worked hard to get and stay clean.

Violence

Frequent arguing, yelling, and screaming between the duo. Neffe consistently states that she will “kill someone” when she discusses her mother’s friends, but she never acts on it. Topics like domestic violence and abuse are discussed.

Sex

Discussions about topics like dating and pregnancy.

Language

Lots of strong language, ranging from audible words like “damn” and “hell” to stronger bleeped terms like  “ass,“ “f--k," “s--t,” and “p---y."

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Cigarettes are occasionally visible; potential for smoking. Frankie is a recovering drug addict, and her challenges are discussed on the show.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this spin-off of Keyshia Cole: The Way It Is -- which follows mother-and-daughter reality personalities Frankie Vons and Neffe Pugh as they work through their troubled relationship -- addresses some tough topics, including drug addiction, domestic violence, abuse, divorce, and incarceration. It also has lots of strong language (though stronger words like “f--k” and "s--t" are bleeped), arguing is constant, and threats of violence are frequent (but never acted upon). But despite all of this, the series does focus on the love between a mother and daughter and the importance of family.

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What's the story?

FRANKIE AND NEFFE, a spin-off of the reality show Keyshia Cole: The Way It Is, follows R&B singer Keyshia Cole's mother and sister as they work through their troubled relationship. Frankie Lons, a recovering drug addict, is attempting to live on her own for the first time, while Neffeteria “Neffe” Pugh is trying to work through the hurt and anger caused by her mother’s addiction -- while also trying to raise her own children. With the help of life coach Lauren Lake, the two attempt to rebuild their relationship and explore potential business ventures. It’s a difficult journey, but one that neither woman is willing to give up on in hopes of pulling their family together.

Is it any good?

Frankie and Neffe offers some positive messages about family and determination, but they're wrapped in layers of dysfunctional behavior. Screaming, yelling, and threats of violence are often part of the conversation ... when the ladies aren't already discussing drug addiction, incarceration, and child neglect. But viewers who look past the rough stuff, will find that the series is really about the importance of recovery, hope, and family.

It isn’t always pretty or comfortable to watch, particularly when each woman tries to cope with her own personal issues (from domestic violence to risky pregnancies to a difficult divorce). Their continual bickering also gets a bit tiresome. But while Frankie and Neffe don’t always deal with their problems in the most constructive way, it's clear that they're committed to creating a loving -- and healthy -- relationship.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why people choose to work out their problems in front of a camera. Is it for the money? Fame? Or is there another reason?

  • Why do you think Frankie and Neffe got their own show? Do you think their lives warrant being televised? Is their relationship relatable?

  • What is a life coach? What kind of training does a life coach need to have? Is it the same is being a therapist? What’s the difference?

TV details

For kids who love reality TV

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