I Am Not Okay with This

review by
Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media
I Am Not Okay with This [node:content-type] Poster Image
Popular with kidsParents recommend
Bloody violence, drinking in exhilarating teen genre mashup.

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 15 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 73 reviews

We think this TV show stands out for:

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Characters don't always cope appropriately with their situations, but messages of courage and self-control shine through as we see resolutions that involve working through emotions and learning how to stay cool despite abundant pressures. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Sydney is a tortured young woman processing a terrible trauma and discovering new, uncomfortable things about herself. She's relatable, lovable, likely to resonate deeply with teens. Sydney's mother is something of a stereotype -- harried, absent, critical -- and there are jerky jocks who also seem cliché. But best buddy Stanley is charming and quirky, and Sydney has a great relationship with him and her sweet, troubled younger brother, Liam. Note that teens smoke pot and drink (see Drinking, Drugs & Smoking section) and are frequently cruel to each other. 

Violence

A parent's death by suicide looms over this drama; he hung himself in his basement, which is referred to frequently (but we don't see visuals). A character has otherworldly powers; expect sci-fi/fantasy violence. One shocking bloody scene in which a character's head explodes. Implied physical abuse by a parent, which happens off-screen; the victimized character turns up with a black eye. 

Sex

Teen characters have sex off-screen and may refer to it in blunt terms: "He was so good at going down on me," says one teen to another. We see kissing (same- and opposite-sex), flirting; lots of discussion of dating and romance. A teen boy calls a girl "firecrotch," and teachers tolerate ribald sexual joking in class. One character tells another she had sex, and the other immediately asks if she used a condom. There's infidelity, with some explicit description.

Language

Language is frequent: "f--k," "f--king," "s--tty," "badass," "d--khead." A parent tells a teen who has a somewhat unconventional gender presentation that he looks "like a f--got." 

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

One character is a frequent pot smoker who smokes with a character who has never indulged and voices a desire to blank out her negative emotions. After smoking, the two then head out for a drive and the newbie says, "My eyes felt heavy and my mind felt empty." A parent is referred to as a "pothead" and it's said about another that "the later she gets home, the more wine she drinks." Teens at a party drink out of Solo cups, beer bottles, a flask and use being drunk as excuse for a kiss. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that I Am Not Okay with This is a drama about a teen girl (Sophia Lillis) who is struggling with complicated feelings about her (female) best friend and the death of her dad at the same time that she is realizing she has supernatural powers. Characters are relatable, particularly Lillis' Sydney, who is righteously angry yet working through terrible trauma, largely by connecting with family and friends and developing her powers of self-control with fortitude and courage. Some characters are a bit stereotypical, like a group of mean jocks, but others are fully realized and sympathetic. A parent's suicide is a plot point and is referred to frequently, though we don't see images. Teens and adults drink and smoke pot to cope with their emotions; there are no visible consequences. They also drive after smoking pot. Romance is another central plot point; expect same- and opposite-sex kissing, flirting, and dating, as well as sometimes vulgar references to off-screen sex (teens do ask each other if they used a condom during sex). Language is frequent: "f--k," "f--king," "s--tty," "badass," "d--khead." A character can move things without touching them and experiences surges of power when angry. Expect fantasy violence, which can be bloody and harmful to others. 

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byAlex112233 May 1, 2020

I am so glad I let my daughter watch it!

I was hesitant at first since I am very strict about what my daughter watches, however I don’t regret letting her watch it at all. She is 12 and it is a good fi... Continue reading
Adult Written bysarah.gab April 21, 2020

Quirky Show

The show is based upon graphic novels, so each episode is relatively short (20 minutes or so). This makes it a great binge watch.

There is a good amount of swe... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byPumpkinGirl July 11, 2020

Great and very good!

I would really recommend this to a lot of pre teens and teenagers. It has a great combo of suspense and mystery plus and thrilling plot! Though the reason I say... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old May 30, 2020

My favourite show on Netflix.

Despite CSM’s higher age rating, I don’t think this show is any worse in terms of adult content then other, comparable shows on Netflix such as Stranger Things... Continue reading

What's the story?

Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Charles Forsman (The End of the F***ing World), I AM NOT OKAY WITH THIS stars Sophia Lillis as Sydney, who self-describes as a "boring 17-year-old White girl" but is anything but ordinary. You see, along with the typical adolescent problems and terrible grief after the recent death of her father, she has confusing feelings about her best friend Dina (Sofia Bryant), who just started dating insufferable meathead Brad (Richard Ellis). It's a good thing she has her other best friend Stanley (Wyatt Oleff) on her side -- particularly when she discovers that her teenage meltdowns come with a literal body count. 

Is it any good?

Lillis is very good in this teen angst-meets-superhero drama with a terrific premise, cool characters, and quirky, wonderful cast. Things get off to a bit of a shaky start when a bloodied Sydney stalks down the middle of a paved road with fury in her eye as the voice-over says "Dear diary: Go f--k yourself." Voice-overs are notoriously tricky things (though The End of the F***ing World largely used the device successfully), and it's certainly taking a risk to have the very first line of your show half cribbed from Heathers, half a bland (if vulgar) cliché. But Lillis is so good that she makes viewers buy right in to her character's irony and anger, and she has such great chemistry with every other actor on screen that her skills are immediately made clear.

The building relationship between Sydney and Stanley (the Duckie to Lillis' Andie) is particularly choice, and feels playful and sweet and real, grounding the supernatural goings-on. Speaking of those, they make pleasant wish-fulfillment for teens, particularly the teenage and 20-something female viewers this series is aimed at, who may know a thing or two personally about impotent rage. Building a drama around an angry young woman whose fury can literally kill is a unique idea, TV series-wise, and Lillis makes her angst relatable. The moments when she lets her freak flag fly are positively exhilarating. I Am Not Okay with This is a winner. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how I Am Not Okay with This portrays teens and their struggles. Are Sydney and Stanley believable characters? What do you think of their attempts to use alcohol and drugs to deal with their problems? What are some more constructive ways of coping? Is it a problem to depict underage drinking on TV shows?

  • Families can also talk about why parents are often absent in stories about teens and young children. What types of storytelling would the presence of parents inhibit? What types of dilemmas do children and teens find themselves in when they must act as their own authority?

  • How does Sydney show courage and self-control? Why do you think these are important character strengths

TV details

Our editors recommend

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