TV review by
Jenny Nixon, Common Sense Media
Homecoming TV Poster Image
Parents recommend
Julia Roberts impresses in paranoia-fueled TV drama.

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 8 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 3 reviews

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

These characters are complicated, with many layers, and even those who want to do good -- as Heidi seems to -- may have more culpability for wrongdoing than they think.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Characters are suffering and have many different motives -- it's hard to tell who's working for good.


There's talk of past violence and wartime. A character is discharged from the military for violence and misconduct. Fistfights and other physical altercations are seen.


Some swearing, including the "F" word; not terribly frequent.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Characters are seen drinking alcohol, others talk about going out to "grab a beer." Soldiers are administered mysterious drugs in their food, seemingly without their consent or knowledge. A scene shows a factory manufacturing some sort of medication.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Homecoming is a drama starring Julia Roberts that centers on a mysterious program aimed at helping returning soldiers reacclimate to civilian life. The series is based on a podcast written by Micah Bloomberg and Eli Horowitz and directed by Sam Esmail of the acclaimed series Mr. Robot. Issues relating to wartime and post-traumatic stress disorder are explored; there are references to past violence as well as some on-screen fistfights and scuffles among the soldiers and other characters. Adults are seen drinking alcoholic beverages, as well as taking various medications. There's some swearing, though it's not used excessively.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byMooreSteve June 21, 2020

Too much f*** used!

Cool show! So interesting and fresh, but it’s absolutely ridiculous that every single character uses f***. Not infrequently like the general description says.... Continue reading
Adult Written byLinea W. November 5, 2018

Interesting cinematography and story line

This show can seem a little slow but it keeps your attention with the story line. There are mysteries and the plot line develops well. There is no nudity other... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byTherealdirtydan December 26, 2018

Great performances and intriguing mystery

Very mysterious and realistic. Has a very dark vibe and swearing so best for 12 and up. Also a bit slow but this matches the shows mood.
Teen, 14 years old Written bytamir.v December 2, 2019

I loved this series and they kept me on edge until the end! And even after that! (cliffhanger)

I really liked this show! It was new, fresh and nothing like I had ever seen before, the acting is great and the plot is beyond description!!
Personally I real... Continue reading

What's the story?

HOMECOMING is a miniseries that explores issues of corruption and repression through the lens of tightly wound protagonist Heidi Bergman (Julia Roberts), a therapist working at a government facility set up to improve the lives of combat veterans as they transition back to private life. Heidi tells herself she's helping to heal these soldiers' traumas, but her aspirations appear to be in constant conflict with her condescending blowhard of a boss, Colin (Bobby Cannavale), who may be hiding a more sinister agenda behind the corporation that's running the program. The show flickers between a past timeline -- where Heidi grows increasingly bonded to one of her patients, Walter Cruz (Stephan James) -- and a future timeline that finds Heidi living with her mom (Sissy Spacek) and working as a waitress, curiously unable to recollect her time at Homecoming when a Department of Defense investigator (Shea Whigham) shows up with questions about exactly what went down there.

Is it any good?

Director Sam Esmail's fingerprint is all over this, with creepy vibes and visual flourishes harking to his other acclaimed show Mr. Robot -- and thankfully, this series has both style and substance. Roberts honestly couldn't have picked a better show in which to make her television debut, playing an unreliable protagonist who swings from ambitious and hopeful in one timeline to confused and guilt-ridden in another. Homecoming does a nimble job navigating between two timelines using a clever optical technique (the past is shown in a standard 16:9 aspect ratio, while the future timeline is a boxed-in and claustrophobic 4:3) and a terrific strings-heavy score. Shea Whigham, perhaps best known as Boardwalk Empire's Eli Thompson, has a great turn here as the introverted Department of Defense bureaucrat trying to get to the bottom of what happened at Homecoming, and who was responsible.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why readjusting to life at home would be hard for a soldier returning from war. What are some challenges they might face? What kind of supports may be needed to help them?

  • How does Homecoming convey the mood of paranoia that is felt by some of the characters? Do you think their theories about what they are experiencing have any basis in reality?

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love drama TV

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