Happily Ever Avatar

TV review by
Marty Brown, Common Sense Media
Happily Ever Avatar TV Poster Image
Reality show about online gamers has profanity, sex talk.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Happily Ever Avatar is mostly about working through problems in a relationship, but the message is diluted by the fact that the problems feel manufactured for the sake of drama.

Positive Role Models

Given the constraints of the premise, Happily Ever Avatar features a reasonably diverse cast, focusing on two straight couples and one gay couple.

Violence

Violence only appears in footage from video games.

Sex

Happily Ever Avatar is about romantic relationships. Sex is not shown but is talked about, usually euphemistically. 

Language

Profanity is used throughout and includes "f--k," "d--k," "s--t," etc.

Consumerism

Cast members are constantly talking about specific video games, characters from video games, and in-game purchases.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Cast members drink alcohol. No smoking or drug use is shown.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Happily Ever Avatar is a reality TV show about three couples who met online while playing video games. Video games are part of the premise and are central to how cast members relate to one another, but the show is essentially about everyday relationship issues. Sex is not shown but is discussed. Profanity is used throughout and includes "f--k," "d--k," "s--t," etc. Cast members are shown drinking, but no smoking or drug use is shown.

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What's the story?

HAPPILY EVER AVATAR is a 12-episode reality show that features three couples who each met playing video games. Amadeus and Karoline are beginning a long-distance relationship; Nick and Tony are working through jealousy issues; and Jake and Chelsea are moving across the country together while considering marriage. Some of the couples have never met in person, but are still in committed relationships with one another. The cast members' friends and family members weigh in about their digital dating lives as the relationships evolve from meeting as gaming avatars to taking it to the next level.

Is it any good?

It may have seemed novel 20 years ago, but couples meeting and relating through video games is relatively mundane in today's digital age. It shouldn't be much of a surprise then that Happily Ever Avatar's subjects are average couples coping with run-of-the-mill relationship problems that usually feel slightly buffed by the showrunners. Gamers may get a kick out of the series -- especially gamers well-acclimated with the individual game titles that sparked each couple's respective relationship -- as may fans of dating reality shows, but otherwise there's nothing too notable about the storylines despite what comes off as a wholly original premise.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the featured couples in Happily Ever Avatar. How did each couple meet? What drew them to one another? What do the couples have in common? How are they different?

  • What place do video games have in each couple's everyday life? How do video games influence how the couples relate to one another?

  • What are some of the positive and negative aspects of each relationship? Would you consider any of these relationships to be healthy? Why or why not?

TV details

  • Premiere date: May 28, 2020
  • Network: HBO Max
  • Genre: Reality TV
  • TV rating: TV-MA
  • Available on: Streaming
  • Last updated: September 30, 2020

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