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A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this adult-oriented drama concerns a cast of suicidal characters -- including a teenage boy -- who've recently tried to kill themselves. While the violence isn't always graphic, it certainly hangs heavily in the background and can be shocking and sudden at times. There's also an intense sexual relationship between the two main characters that begins almost immediately after they meet (against a fence on a city street, no less) and some unbleeped swearing (mostly "f--k"). A few characters drink alcohol and smoke cigarettes, too.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
GRAVITY hits hard when upper-crust doctor Robert Collingsworth (Ivan Sergei) and make-up counter clerk Lily Champagne (Krysten Ritter) prove unsuccessful at killing themselves and ending their misery. Now, as reluctant members of a suicide-suppport group, they're forced to talk about their feelings with others who've shared the same dark emotions they've felt. Led by a wheelchair-bound ex-ballplayer (Ving Rhames), the group includes an overachieving housewife (Robyn Cohen), a former model (Rachel Hunter), a construction worker (James Martinez) and an unhappy teenager (Seth Numrich). Meanwhile, a quirky detective (Eric Schaeffer) with curious motives is watching Lily's every move.
Is it any good?
There's a palpable silence in this pitch-black Starz drama about a group of suicide survivors who would rather be dead. But it's the kind of silence that comes from sub-par writing and awkward pacing rather than purposeful tension or riveting performances. Writer-director-producer Schaeffer (who previously penned a short-lived series about recovering bulemics, anorexics, and binge-eaters) clearly loves his cast of odd, damaged characters -- and his own role as a creepy cop who steals suspects' panties and totes his glock to yoga.
But for the rest of us, the end result is DOA.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the real consequences of suicide and whether the show tackles the subject in a particularly responsible way. Why do each of the characters choose to attempt suicide? How do their actions affect their loved ones and others around them?
Does the show celebrate life -- or wallow in death? What do you make of the overall message and tone?