TV review by Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
Jessie Poster Image

Common Sense says

age 7+

Funny, family oriented series has some stereotyping.

Parents say

age 10+

Based on 126 reviews

Kids say

age 9+

Based on 444 reviews

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

Community Reviews

age 18+

Derogatory and Insulting

There is a ton of garbage to unpack in this stereotype ladened series. This is a poor sitcom with few redeemable qualities. Every season tries to course correct stereotype jokes, bullying jokes, intelligence jokes and irresponsible humor. The show never gets above the wealth humor which is utterly ridiculous and the source of this shows greatest irresponsibility and cruelest lesson - the wealthy are seen as being able to do whatever and act however they want. Having watched this show with my daughter who only sees the basic physical humor as funny, the whole of Jessie really bases itself around a common person’s view of the wealthy, particularly children of wealthy parents - the Ross parents have been established as flighty and irresponsible who leave ALL of the parenting duties to nannies of which Jessie is the last of the line. The children, three of whom are adopted, have been trained to believe wealth = right and Jessie does little to deter that, choosing to exploit it or insult it on occasion. Overall, the children are depicted as being very uneducated, lazy and conniving - a clear attempt to throwback to some 80s sitcom humor but missing a key element of it: morality and ethics - the kids never actually feel bad or learn any real lessons. I see all this as a writing problem: the show attempts to compete with Nickelodeon’s series of numbskullery (iCarly, Sam and Kat as well as Victorious) - which hope to capture the spirit of the 80s sitcom but lack the maturity of undertones that drove those shows. Jessie tried to slam Mr Belvedere, Who’s the Boss and Different Strokes into its format and show it on a Disney labeled channel resulting in confusion - It isn’t as thoughtful as other Disney labeled shows It isn’t adult enough in its slick humor It’s very sexual for its channel designation And it is contradictory to a company that edits out Dumbo and Songs of the South from its playlists but takes direct jabs to Ravi’s culture in the first 3 seasons of this show. If Jessie were on Hulu, CW, Paramount or Fox - especially Fox - I think it would be okay, brain dead, redundant humor that is a flawed attempt to capture the sitcom of yesteryear but because it is Disney, you expect more and certainly don’t expect all you get on this program. Bunkd shows a maturity in writing as it gets further from the humor and questionable antics that its source material in Jessie produced Conclusion: there are few redeemable moments in this series and this show despite some reviewers here and the show’s star may imply, is not for everyone.

This title has:

Too much sex
Too much consumerism
7 people found this helpful.
age 18+

Racist stereotypes of Indian Americans

“The stereotypes and soft racism in “Jessie” run far deeper than a forced accent. Ravi is a flat character in the show and represents the “classic Indian”: an awkward, nerdy, unathletic boy. His main purpose is to serve as the butt of jokes from other non-Indian characters. In one episode, another character refers to Ravi as a “traffic cone” when he is wearing traditional clothes. Most notably, Ravi has a pet lizard named Mrs. Kipling, whose presence is a recurring joke throughout the seasons. The lizard’s name is a clear reference to Rudyard Kipling, author of “The Jungle Book” and a strong advocate for imperialism. Having an Indian character own a pet named after the man who wrote “The White Man’s Burden” does not seem coincidental. Later on, in the show’s narrative, Mrs. Kipling has 12 children, whose names are arguably worse. Aside from those named after characters in “The Jungle Book,” one of the babies is named Mohandas, an allusion to Gandhi (Gandhi’s full name was Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi). Gandhi is widely revered by Indians and considered the father of the nation, as his teachings of compassion and nonviolent protests paved the way for its independence. How is a baby lizard, whose existence is purely for comedic purposes, named after him? Not only is this simply a bad choice of name, but it’s disrespectful to a pivotal figure in Indian history. While this seems apparent to some, these deliberate attacks on Indian culture and history likely go unassumed by the children who watch the show. This may have been slightly more acceptable if there was a force that pushed for a celebration of Indian culture on the show. However, none of the members of the production team behind “Jessie” were Indian. This lack of representation behind the scenes makes it likely that bits of Indian culture were simply used for comic relief.” - Manas Khatore
6 people found this helpful.

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