Goosebumps

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
Goosebumps TV Poster Image
Spooky spin on books may be too scary for kids.
Popular with kids

Parents say

age 10+
Based on 19 reviews

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 81 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

There are plenty of sinister characters and others whose true intentions are undetermined. Teen characters often play mean-spirited tricks or otherwise torment each other, with the only consequence being eventual revenge by the original victim.

Violence

Intensity varies greatly depending on each episode's story, but violence has included animal bites, fistfights, and implications of murder. There's always the possibility of some blood and gore and weapons like knives. Suspense and other scary/creepy content are central to the series.

Sex
Language

Some name-calling, but no cursing.

Consumerism

The show is based on a popular series of books, so it might increase fans' interest in reading the original stories -- which may not necessarily be a bad thing.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this tween-and-teen-targeted horror anthology series is based on R.L. Stine's popular books of the same name. Everything you'd expect from "regular" horror shows (sinister characters, creepy creatures, and spine-tingling suspense) is here -- just on a milder level. Each episode tells a different story; some have included things like plants that entrap passersby and people who transform into monsters. The unpredictability of the storylines, the young characters' frequent anti-social behavior, and the hazy line between fantasy and reality make this show iffy for kids.

User Reviews

Adult Written bypccangel April 9, 2008

Ok for ages 8+

Goosebumps is too scary for the younger kids. My 6 year old has been running down the hall to my room the middle of every night since we watched one episode wit... Continue reading
Adult Written byEggplant May 8, 2015

Goosebumps.. You must beware you're in for a scare

Violence 7/10: Slappy bites, grabs, and even chokes children. He kicks a character at one point too. Uncle Al gets a poison dart to the chest. The Haunted Mask... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byKatnissRide1312 November 17, 2011

Fun Show To Watch

It All depends on the kid. I watch this with my siblings. One is nine and one is ten. It doesn't scare them, in fact we even some times laugh at the cheesy... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byarthur16morgana January 14, 2011

goosebumps!!

i love goosebumps. me and my now 14 year old friend were obsessed with it and watching all the movies. we still are an i even got my 15 year old friend to star... Continue reading

What's the story?

Based on the popular books by R. L. Stine, GOOSEBUMPS is a live-action horror series for tweens and teens that originally aired in the mid-1990s. The anthology, which includes adaptations of 43 of the original books, brings many of readers' favorite tales to life. Like most grown-up horror films, Goosebumps takes place in a bizarre reality in which remarkably unusual events happen on a regular basis without really shocking the people involved. In each story/episode, the young character or characters (usually teens) at the center of the madness must figure out how to survive the frightening and often dangerous situations they're forced into.

Is it any good?

The tales run the gamut from creepy to spooky to just plain weird. Curses, mysticism, and paranormal activity are the norm here, and the ever-changing plot makes content difficult to predict. Each story aims to scare its viewers, and heart-pounding suspense is around every corner. In addition, many of the young characters terrorize and play mean jokes on each other, and plots often center on one person seeking revenge on another.

While the books are popular among 8- to 10-year-olds, the scary visuals make the show iffy for tweens, and parents will likely want to give each episode a once-over before giving sensitive young viewers the OK. And while teens can probably handle the scares, they may be turned off by the dated, low-budget film style and overacting that often plagues horror films of all levels.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the appeal of scary stories. Is it ever fun to be frightened by what you read in a book or see on TV shows or at the movies? Why? Families whose tweens are familiar with the Goosebumps books can also discuss how the show compares to them. Which version did you think was more frightening? Why?

TV details

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