Goodnight Burbank

Common Sense Media says

Online cultural satire relies on stereotypes for laughs.

Age(i)

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Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

While aiming for satire, the show pokes fun at Christian Fundamentalism and includes bigoted references targeted at Muslims. Characters make fun of a disabled employee. Racism in the workplace is also mentioned.

Positive role models

Some members of the newscast think nothing of insulting each other's religion, political beliefs, and even looks. Chilton Chivers thinks nothing of exploiting his staff and the station, including his disabled sister.

Violence

Characters comically fall down from high places, trip over equipment, and occasionally die from their wounds (but no blood is shown). References are made to a cast member purposely burning down the station for insurance money.

Sex

References to adult films, sexual activities, and focusing on women's breasts to get viewers. A cast person is seen in his underwear. Pregnancies and single motherhood are discussed.

Language

Words like "dick," "crap," and "bitch" are audible.

Consumerism

References are made to social networking forums like Twitter.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

References made to drinking and drugs.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this online comedy series tries for cultural satire but relies on racial and religious stereotypes and strong sexual references for laughs. The language is salty ("dick," "crap," "bitch,") and references are made to popular social networking sites like Twitter.

Parents say

Kids say

Not yet rated
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What's the story?

GOOD NIGHT BURBANK is a comedy about the behind-the-scenes drama of a live nightly news show. The online series, which began as a short-form series and expanded to be one of the first half-hour sitcoms created for the Internet, features Laura Silverman and Hayden Black as co-anchors Whitney Appleby and Gordon Winston-Smyth. The hapless reporters read the headlines from a garage in Burbank, California. Field reporters like Paul Lynch (Dominic Monaghan) and Genevieve Nigwa (Diahnna Nicole Baxter), and weather reporter Paisley Parker (Adrienne Wilkinson), also join the team. Managing the fray behind the cameras are folks like former adult movie producer Yan Bobek (Camden Toy), makeup artist Nadira Farhad (Hadeel Sittu), assistant producer Holly Johnson (America Young), and their obnoxious executive producer, Chilton Chivers (Cameron Bender). It’s definitely crazy, but somehow they manage to make it on the air.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Like most online comedy series, this web comedy pushes the envelope by mixing slapstick with political incorrectness in order to appeal an online viewing audience. Rather than relying on witty or insightful political satire, it draws its humor from obvious stereotypes about Muslims, conservative Christians, the disabled, and other groups. It also depends on some strong sexual references for laughs.

The show's longer segments makes it possible for more characters and a few more plot lines than its online counterparts. But folks looking for an online comedy that duplicates the comic traditions of television will not find it here. What they will find is a typical Internet series that is both harebrained and irreverent.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about online programming. How does the content of online shows differ from television shows? Why do you think this is? Do you think online shows should look and sound just like television?

  • Why do comics sometimes rely on stereotypes for a laugh? Do you think this is appropriate? Why or why not? What is the difference between being satirical and just being insulting?

TV details

Cast:Dominic Monaghan, Hayden Black, Laura Silverman
Network:Hulu
Genre:Comedy
TV rating:NR
Available on:Streaming

This review of Goodnight Burbank was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Parent of a 8 year old Written byKathy B April 30, 2011
AGE
14
QUALITY
 

Social satire giving perspective on the people who bring us news; great for kids 14+

Melissa seems to have missed the point. The show is about the people who bring us the news and why we shouldn't trust them. Goodnight Burbank lifts the lid on the type of people who decide what is news, how important it is, etc - by showing them off as human. Sure, there's some element of "stereotyping" but this is a comedy. I would suggest we watch a few episodes before we definitively call them stereotypes because so far we've only seen one episode - and I think it's pretty judgmental to cast such things in stone on a first impression of one episode. I agree that this show is not for kids. So far there's been no nudity or real swearing but the situations are certainly not for young ones. The laughs are hard and fast and I also have to respectfully disagree with Melissa that the show is like a typical web comedy. There's never been anything like it on the web! But that's also just my opinion :) You should check it out for yourself.
What other families should know
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