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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
A group of friends is loyal to each other but uses violence and deception in pursuit of a morally questionable end. Authority figures physically and emotionally abuse their charges. Harrowing experiences from childhood are used to justify criminal and moral wrongdoing.
Positive Role Models
Main character Jackson is an ethical lawyer who works hard but is compromised by his emotional ties. Many characters believe that committing crimes in the name of vengeance is acceptable.
Violence & Scariness
Characters have an emotional scuffle, which leads to one getting pushed to the ground; a car accident results in a death, and we see the victim motionless and streaked with blood; a man is punched, kicked, and pushed violently for not paying in full for a black-market purchase; a character kills a man with a golf club, and we see blood and the dead body and hear fleshy impact noises; a man punches another during a bar fight; prison guards beat a young boy with belts. Two boys are forced to fight in a cage match; a character is stabbed, and dark blood pools beneath him. Prisoners riot, throwing things and setting fires. Implied rape between boys in a juvenile detention center.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
An engaged couple has brief implied sex in bed with thrusting and moaning, male partner briefly visible nude from the side. Implied rape between youths at a juvenile detention center.
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Occasional cursing: "bastard," "dammit," "ass."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A group of tweens pass around a bottle of wine; references to drinking and being drunk in a criminal justice context; a "bad guy" smokes a cigarette; scenes take place in bars with characters drinking brown liquor and bottles of beer, although no one acts drunk. Drugs play a part in a conspiracy with political implications.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Game of Silence is a dark, grim drama about a group of friends still suffering from a series of harrowing childhood incidents. There's frequent violence: deaths occur on-screen, including accidents and murder, with blood and some gore, plus some fistfights and scuffles. Authorities abuse, beat, and (implied, offscreen) molest their young charges in a juvenile detention facility. Scenes take place in bars with characters drinking beers and liquor, and they act sloppy and violent after drinking. Drugs figure in a shadowy political conspiracy. Characters engage in criminal and moral misdeeds and try to justify their actions. A villain smokes on-screen. Cursing includes "dammit," "ass," and "hell."
Is It Any Good?
This entry in the "avenging a dark incident from one's past" genre is competently written, acted, and plotted, if a bit clichéd. Audiences who've seen Sleepers or Mystic River may feel like they're seeing a retread: Game of Silence centers on many of the same themes and runs through many of the plot paces. But the actors -- particularly Tate as Shawn Cook, compelling enough to be the lead yet not given as much to do -- do sell the material, breathing life into the familiar goings-on. The thriller pacing, with a cliffhanger before commercials and at the ends of episodes, is grabby, too -- you'll want to see what happens next to these characters, even if you suspect you know how it's all going to end. A warning for family viewers: Because there are violent and horrifying things that happen to young characters, watching with teens and tweens may be fraught. The violent incidents are frequently referred to, with flashbacks that may make some viewers very uncomfortable. Be forewarned if you watch as a family.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.