GCB TV Poster Image

GCB

(i)

 

Drama + comedy in the Bible Belt = feisty fun for grown-ups.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The show makes light of cattiness and backstabbing among women who use their wealth and social standing to influence and bully others. And all kinds of iffy behavior -- from extramarital affairs to unsavory business arrangements –- play a role in the show’s plot. But on the positive side, the story centers on a newly widowed woman's efforts to build an upstanding life for herself and her kids while making amends for past wrongs that caused lifelong hurt among her high school peers.

Positive role models

The characters aren't impressive on the whole, with most of the main female characters obsessed with self-image, wealth, and status, even as they profess to be religious and quote the Bible to justify their actions. But there are a few bright spots, particularly Amanda, who uses tragedy to reprioritize her life, reconnect with her estranged mother, and teach her kids about second chances. She's not perfect, but her intentions are good, and she's determined to build a wholesome life for her family.

Violence
Not applicable
Sex

The act itself isn't shown, but the rest is fair game. A typical episode includes references to oral sex, discussion of a teen's virginity, implications of secretive homosexual relationships, slang like "tapping that" and "MILF," plus some making out, kissing, and suggestive touching between couples, with implied sex to follow.

Language

Casual use of "bitch," "ass," "hell," and "damn."

Consumerism

Brand names like Neiman Marcus pop up in conversation as marks of social status.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Wine and mixed drinks are staples at any time of a normal day and especially in social settings. Amanda is a recovering alcoholic and declines drinks because of it.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that GCB is a comedy/soap opera intended for a mature audience, as evidenced by frequent sexual content (mostly implied or in discussions, though there are some instances of physical contact), strong language, and conniving behavior on the part of self-proclaimed Christian women. Manipulation and abuse of social standing is common among so-called friends, extramarital affairs (between both heterosexual and homosexual couples) are fair game, and there's a surprising amount of casual drinking. That said, there are some positive themes to be gleaned from the main character's efforts to rebuild her life after tragedy and scandal, and the admissions to past wrongdoings she must make to do so. If your teens are mature enough to differentiate between parody and the reality presented in this show, then take the opportunity to reinforce the statements it makes about the effects of bullying.

What's the story?

Amanda Vaughn (Leslie Bibb) is a recently widowed mother of two who's coping with the fallout from her philandering husband's financial scandal and unexpected death. With few options and no money, she reluctantly moves her two teens from their Southern California life back to her hometown of Dallas -- and in with her wealthy and domineering mother, Gigi (Annie Potts). A lot has changed in the nearly two decades since Amanda left town, but what hasn't changed are the bruised egos of her former classmates, whom Amanda terrorized while she reigned as the town's mean girl during high school. Now that she's back and the social standing is reversed, these "proper" Southern ladies have their sights set on revenge, and, as Amanda will soon learn, few dangers compare to holy Christian women with an axe to grind.

Is it any good?

QUALITY

Based on the hit book Good Christian Bitches by Kim Gatlin, GCB (a.k.a. Good Christian Belles) is an expertly cast, cleverly written, deliciously naughty show that turns the characters' bad behavior into highly entertaining fare. Kristin Chenoweth is a comedic marvel as Bible-quoting society queen Carlene Cockburn, as she and Amanda's other former favorite targets team up to dish out some payback. The give-and-take between the sides brings old emotions to the surface and opens a surprisingly honest window into the aftermath of bullying and peer pressure. Granted, the show is rife with stereotypes and really isn't out to take a serious stand on this or any other issue, but it's an interesting byproduct nonetheless and speaks to the long-lasting effects of peer-inflicted emotional trauma.

It should be stressed that parents need to take care in giving their teens the go-ahead in watching this show. Strong language is common ("bitch," "hell," "ass"), there's lots of drinking, and sexual implications (references to the act, slang terms like "MILF," and physical contact that implies lovemaking is imminent) are the norm. Mature teens will see the humor in the social caste system and the women's cattiness, though, so if you deem yours ready for the adult content, this might be a fun choice for you to chuckle at together. If you do, be sure to point out the positive messages that surround Amanda's efforts to make amends for her past and change her life in a positive way, including her devoted sobriety. 

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the adults in GCB. Are any of them worthy role models? Which of their actions makes them so? Can their bad behavior be excused in any way? Why do we see so many women being mean to each other on TV?

  • How does bullying affect its victims? How can it impact someone's self-image? Do you think it's possible to truly overcome the ghosts of your past? How does life experience change the way we view ourselves and other people?

  • Have you ever had to overcome tragedy? How did it affect you? Did it change your priorities? Is there ever an up side to bad circumstances?

TV details

Premiere date:March 4, 2012
Cast:Annie Potts, Kristin Chenoweth, Leslie Bibb
Network:ABC
Genre:Drama
Topics:Friendship
TV rating:TV-PG
Available on:Streaming

This review of GCB was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Great handpicked alternatives

  • Local government spoof for mature viewers is goofy at heart.
  • Edgy-but-quirky comedy's music, message will win teens over.
  • Edgy, satirical comedy is fun for older teens, adults.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Kid, 12 years old April 1, 2012

Perfect LOL comedy for teens 14 and up!!!!

this is a hilarious show!!! sexual content--it is obvious they are going to have sex BUT nothing too explicit. its rated tv pg and its mostly sexual dialouge rather then sex itself.examples, carlene walks in on her song "greasin his gun" carlene and her husband are shown laying in the same bed, the woman try to get their husbands to notice their cleavage by wearing lowcut dresses. one teen girl gets a boob-job. Its really an amazing show!!!! so funnny!!!! my favorite character is carlene cockburn (played by kristin chenoweth,my idol :) )
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much sex
Teen, 13 years old Written bybooklover27 March 9, 2012

Okay Show

This just was okay, nothing special. And honestly, not super inappropriate, most teens have already been exposed to these kind of things. But I really don't like Kristen Chenowith's character, she infuriates me.
Kid, 10 years old March 4, 2012

Inappropriate, But Seems Interesting

I saw the promo it seems interesting but from the looks is very inappropriate. There was major making out but is funny. I rate for 16 and up!
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?