Goosebumps

Common Sense Media says

Spooky spin on books may be too scary for kids.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

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
Not applicable
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
Not applicable

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.

Parents say

Kids say

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?

QUALITY
 

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.

Families can talk 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

Cast:Cody Jones, Kathryn Short, Scott Wickware
Network:Cartoon Network
Genre:Drama
TV rating:TV-PG
Available on:DVD

This review of Goosebumps 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, okay 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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Teen, 13 years old Written byKatnissRide1312 November 17, 2011
AGE
9
QUALITY
 

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 effects. If your child gets scard easily I wouldn't recommend watching this. It is totally appropiate language wise. I don't even remember them saying some thing like crap or anything. Some episdoes are scarier then othes.
Teen, 15 years old Written byarthur16morgana January 14, 2011
AGE
7
QUALITY
 

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 watching it. i know the intro song by heart.
Teen, 13 years old Written byLuckyPleo June 25, 2011
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

TOO SCARY FOR EVEN ME!

I read one of the books when I was 9 or 10 and I will never pick up another one again. What was apparently the "Most Mild" of the goosebumps got me so scarred that I couldn't sleep for months, not only did the "happy endning" turn into a trap where characters had to run and fight for their lives in order to escape a playground of deaths that monsters place humans in for entertainment. Those who were fans of the books said that the books were no where near as scary as the show. Now, I still remember direct quotes from that book, and I was TERRIFIED, It gives me shudders to think about it, and I did not nor do believe in monsters when I read that. Common sense has it ranked appropriate because there is no blood or gore, but there is WAY intense scenes that NEVER END. SPOILER ALERT for one of the books/episodes! After MANY very intense near death experiences at a park, the workers are revealed to be horrible monsters who tell them "it's all a joke, you're on a hidden camera show for a monster channel" they say, here is the "real" exit over this way, then they lock them in a dark hall, tell them "NO ONE EVER SURVIVES HORRORLAND" then set various traps and monster on them, one character says "They REALLY ARE GOING TO KILL US!" then they escape with the monsters chasing them after the fight for survival ends.
What other families should know
Too much violence

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