A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Impractical Jokes is a hidden-camera series on which comedians play practical jokes on strangers in public places. Although it's in good fun, and most of the antics are designed to poke fun at the cast, it's not tween-friendly; there's some strong language (including bleeped curses), crude sexual references, and innuendo. There's also some racial and gender stereotyping, as well as drinking (beer and mixed drinks).
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
IMPRACTICAL JOKERS is an unscripted, hidden-camera show featuring the members of the comedy troupe the Tenderloins, who perform crazy pranks on unsuspecting strangers. Comedians and best friends Brian "Q" Quinn, James "Murr" Murray, Joe Gatto, and Sal Vulcano take turns performing practical jokes in public places. While the rest of gang feeds the designated prankster instructions through a hidden earpiece, he must successfully complete an awkward stunt as often as possible. Hidden cameras let the other guys watch -- and laugh. From trying to hug people in a bowling ally to randomly scooping mashed potatoes onto restaurant patrons' plates, each comedian does his best to follow instructions without dying of humiliation. The cast member who completes the least number of successful pranks must perform one final, embarrassing stunt.
Is it any good?
Impractical Jokers features lots of awkward moments as the comedians engage in weird behavior or repeat lines that range from silly to offensive. But, thanks to the talented and experienced cast's ad libbing and comedic timing, there are some genuinely funny moments. The reactions of unsuspecting people will make you chuckle, too.
Some of the humor can be a bit risqué, but ultimately the antics are designed to challenge the cast rather than poke fun at their victims. Teens and adults who like hidden-camera shows will find something here to like.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about practical jokes. Why do people play pranks? When is playing a prank funny, and when does it go too far? Should playing a joke on someone include humiliating him or her?
What makes hidden-camera prank shows entertaining? Is it fun to laugh at the people playing the jokes? Or are we supposed to laugh at their victims?
Should stereotypes ever be used as a way of being funny, even if they're not meant to be taken seriously?
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