High Seas

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
High Seas TV Poster Image
Lavish Spanish mystery series has violence, smoking.

Parents say

age 16+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

It's a mystery thriller but features themes like family, marrying for convenience, corruption, death. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Eva and Carolina are strong women, but the older Carolina is determined to do what is right for the family, while Eva looks for independence, adventure. Lots of suspects lurking around, but those not guilty of murder aren't necessarily pleasant either. Men are often sexist, in line with cultural norms of the time.


People are shown being brutally struck with objects, hanging by the neck, and with bloody wounds. A woman is thrown from the ship. Sexual violence is visible, rape is insinuated. Some yelling and screaming. 


Lots of strong sexual innuendo, ranging from obvious flirtations to subtle references to threesomes and other activities. 


Strong Spanish words are occasionally uttered, but the subtitles do not translate them all into English.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Lots of drinking. Endless amount of cigarette smoking. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that High Seas (Alta Mar) is a Spanish mystery thriller that takes place on a 1940s transatlantic liner sailing from Spain to Brazil. It features violent scenes, including people being brutally hit with objects, people hanging from ceilings, and other events. Sexual violence includes a rape. Drinking is frequent, and cigarette smoking is constant. There are also some strong Spanish-language words uttered, only some of which are translated in the English subtitles. 

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byKarenMcPat September 2, 2020

Good show

It’s a good show. The MA rating on Netflix is not reflective of the show in my opinion. It is more of a PG14.

There is SOME swearing, but not an insane amount... Continue reading

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

HIGH SEAS (Alta Mar) is a Spanish mystery thriller that takes place on a 1940s transatlantic liner sailing from Spain to Brazil. As sisters Eva (Ivana Baquero) and Carolina Villanueva (Alejandra Onieva) make their way to join their Uncle Pedro (José Sacristán) on board the luxurious ship the Barbara de Braganza, they run into a distressed young woman (played by Manuela Vellés) who claims to be escaping from her abusive husband. Much to the dismay of their maid, Francisca de García (Chiqui Fernández), and her daughter, Verónica (Begoña Vargas), the siblings sneak her onto the ship, which is owned by Carolina's fiancé, Fernando Fábregas (Eloy Azorín). What follows is a series of mysterious murders that Eva, a headstrong young writer, is determined to solve with the help of First Officer Nicolás Vázquez (Jon Korajarena). But she and Carolina soon realize that the truth behind what is happening is connected to some disturbing family secrets. 

Is it any good?

Produced by the same studio responsible for popular series like Velvet, Grand Hotel, and Cable Girls, this entertaining Spanish period saga delivers a solid plotline filled with whodunits and dark, hidden family truths. As the series' stories progress and become more complicated, so do the well-crafted characters, especially that of the young but determined Eva (played by Pan's Labyrinth's Ivana Baquero). 

High Seas tells a good story, but its historically accurate, and very elaborate, set designs and detailed period costumes are especially captivating. Meanwhile, the lavish transatlantic ocean liner itself serves as a quiet character, and the only one who knows the absolute truth behind everything that is happening. If you like period mysteries and high drama, you'll enjoy binge-watching this one. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about historical fiction. High Seas is set in the 1940s, but what makes it relevant today? What kind of research went into developing the set design, costumes, and aspects of the series to ensure accuracy? Why is it necessary for telling this particular story?

  • What makes a good mystery or thriller? Does it have to be violent in order to create suspense or to increase the narrative tension? Are there other ways of doing this while adhering to the genre?

TV details

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For kids who love international drama

Themes & Topics

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