A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Fighting is presented within a historical and cultural context. The focus isn't on fighting as an act of hostility but as a sport that takes great skill and determination. The hosts show great respect for the cultures they encounter, as well as their teachers and opponents. The hosts are both white men, but episodes take place in a range of nations/cultures.
Violence & Scariness
The show's focus is martial arts, so there are occasional knock outs, blood, and injuries, as well as graphic descriptions of the effect of certain moves -- including death. Some weapons, like swords, are occasionally demonstrated in practice sessions. Brief discussion of war and combat. Each episode ends with a real fight.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Mention of sex trade and shots of brothel signage as part of historical/cultural background information.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Occasional "ass," "crap," and "screwed" stronger language (like "f--k" and "bulls--t") is bleeped.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Mention of drugs in a historical context -- such as when the hosts mention that parts of Burma are heroin trade hotspots.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this documentary-style reality series focuses on martial arts, providing specific descriptions of fighting moves that younger viewers might easily want to copy. That said, the show does a great job of teaching history and culture along with fighting styles. Most fight scenes are part of practice sessions, but some professional bouts occur, and fighters are occasionally seen getting knocked out and bloody. Each episode ends with one of the hosts fighting in a real match, which sometimes results in injury. Discussion of war and combat is part of the history lessons. Expect a bit of swearing (the strongest words are bleeped), especially during the heated final fight.
Is It Any Good?
Human Weapon does a good job of integrating history and culture into the scenes of fighting practice. Digital images help viewers understand the specifics of the physical moves, as well as the scientific reasons for their effectiveness. The culminating fight adds an element of excitement and helps viewers experience the journey and lessons vicariously. The two men are enthusiastic and eager to learn, but they also show respect for the skills of their teachers and eventual opponents, as well as the cultures they encounter. In the Muay Thai episode, for example, the hosts begin in Bangkok, where professional matches are fought before huge crowds. They then travel to different parts of Thailand, where they learn about Muay Thai's predecessor (which was harsher and designed specifically for combat), as well as different branches of the current form. With each stop, Chambers and Duff pick up additional techniques and practice them with experts. Eventually, they bring their accumulated knowledge back to Bangkok, where they try to integrate them into their repertoire as they face off against a pro.
Other than some occasional profanity, parents' only concern is likely to be the show's focus on violent -- if controlled -- athleticism, and tweens and teens might need to be reminded that they shouldn't try the moves at home. But watching might encourage some young viewers to take martial arts lessons, which would be a great way to connect history with exercise (and learn self-defense at the same time).
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
Suggest an Update
Our Editors Recommend
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate