Happy Endings

TV review by
Kari Croop, Common Sense Media
Happy Endings TV Poster Image
Talky romcom runs on booze, puns, and innuendo.

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 1 review

A lot or a little?

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

Positive messages

It's not really a "message" show, but the series does promote friendship, often over romantic relationships. If a character has lied or behaved irresponsibly, they usually recognize the error of their ways by the end of an episode.

Positive role models & representations

Characters regularly make mistakes -- from acting selfishly to telling lies to shirking responsibility -- and they don't always learn from their experiences. Most appear to have jobs of some kind, but you rarely see them working.

Violence

Characters fall and trip for comedic purposes but don't get seriously injured.

Sex

Sexual innuendo drives a lot of jokes, but there's rarely any visible hanky-panky. Some light kissing, discussion of porn, comic references to vaginas and threesomes, etc.

Language

Words like "damn" and "hell," plus "ass," "bitch," and "bastard." Sexually charged terms include "slut" and "gay" (used as a pseudo-slur/pun by a gay character, as in "Coming out is so gay").

Consumerism

Name-droppage is rare, but one episode mentions Skinnygirl Margaritas.

Drinking, drugs & smoking

Social drinking in every episode, and drunkenness is played for comedy. A character drinks straight vodka but tells others it's water, another makes a "gin smoothie" for breakfast, etc. Some comedic references to drug use, including a pun about a nickel bag of heroin.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this relationship sitcom is targeting single and married adults in their late 20s and 30s with its social drinking and sexually charged jokes that, while age appropriate for its characters, may not be the best choice for teens. There isn't much in terms of visible hanky panky, but characters do kiss on camera. They also have one-night stands with strangers and occasionally make cheeky references to porn and threesomes. Audible language includes "bitch" and "bastard" in addition to sexually charged terms like "slut" and "gay" (which is used more than once as a comic-slur/pun by a gay character).

User Reviews

Adult Written bydr dew October 3, 2011

aw

well i love this show i think it is very funny and sweet but it is just too mature for my 3 younger siblings
Parent of a 14 and 14 year old Written by1 dad May 11, 2011

great

just another abc sitcom that me and my 3 favorite girls all can laugh at as a family and we love it
Kid, 11 years old April 29, 2012

Great show

When i watched the first 3 episodes i was like"this is boring"and a year later i watched it again and it is so funny and the characters are way cooler...

What's the story?

It's not necessarily about HAPPY ENDINGS for longtime friends Dave (Zachary Knighton), Alex (Elisha Cuthbert), Jane (Eliza Coupe), Brad (Damon Wayans Jr.), Penny (Casey Wilson), and Max (Adam Pally) when Alex leaves Dave at the altar and takes off alone on their honeymoon, throwing their relationship -- and the group dynamic -- into a tailspin. But when Alex gets back to Chicago, the onetime lovers air their grievances and ultimately make peace as platonic friends.The only committed couple now is Alex's sister Jane and her husband, Brad, who support their single friends through the hilarity of dating.

Is it any good?

Early on, you get the feeling that Happy Endings is desperately trying to secure one for itself so that it won't join the sad line of similarly themed sitcoms that got canceled because they couldn’t find an audience. And, apparently, the show’s producers are betting it all on breakneck banter with awkwardly forced "slanguage" like "bro," "dude," "deets," and -- in a particularly cringe-worthy instance -- "Lake Mich." (We dare you to find a Chicagoan who actually calls it that.)

The intent of a chatty script, of course, is to keep things moving comedically. But the effect here is a hyper-realized world that, while undeniably witty, at times feels a bit frantic and forced. Thankfully, that doesn't keep the laughs from coming ... it just distracts you when they do.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the show's writing style, particularly in terms of how the characters communicate. How realistic are these characters and their problems, and how does that relate to the way they speak? Is the show trying too hard to be clever?

  • Does the drinking on the show seem realistic? What would be the real consequences of drinking like they do on the show?

  • Do you think this show has a message when it comes to love, relationships, and marriage? Who has the healthiest outlook when it comes to love?

  • Is this the type of show that would appeal to lots of people or a very specific group? Who's the target audience here? How can you tell?

TV details

For kids who love funny stuff

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