Just for Laughs

Common Sense Media says

Mostly tame hidden-camera jokes fun for families.

Age(i)

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Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The pranks can sometimes seem mean-spirited -- like pretend peeing on people. But people are let in on the joke afterward.

Violence

Pranks sometimes seem like they'll be harmful to people or animals, such as one in which a woman puts a dog into a mailbox. But the scene set-up always makes it clear that nobody gets hurt.

Sex

Occasional pranks with sexual overtones -- two men kissing, a camera that takes photos of woman's cleavage, etc.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that that this hidden-camera comedy features mostly harmless pranks, like squirting people with water and pretending to put a dog in a mailbox. Some jokes occasionally contain a mild sexual or scatological theme, such as one scenario in which a couple asks strangers to take their picture -- and each time, the printout shows a close-up of the woman's breasts. Another set-up involves pretend urinating on people, which returns hilarious reactions. But it's not as mean-spirited as some other hidden-camera or blooper shows, and most parents of tweens probably won't find much to object to.

Parents say

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Kids say

What's the story?

Based on a Canadian series, the half-hour hidden-camera comedy relies on silly gags and universal themes to bring on the guffaws. Hosted by Rick Miller, the show features gags played on the unsuspecting. For example: A woman asks a stranger for help opening a mailbox, only to place her furry lapdog inside instead of her package. As the gag plays over and over with different strangers, the reactions run the gamut from stunned silence to wide-eyed paralysis to angry attempts to rescue the pooch.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

When cop shows, family sitcoms, and foul-mouthed chefs prove tiresome, JUST FOR LAUGHS will provide a fluffy TV fix without requiring much in return. Some segments are funnier than others, of course, but most viewers will find something to laugh at. Though viewers can sometimes make out what people are saying by lip-reading, the comedy is purely situational and requires no dialogue, which makes the show universally appealing.

Scenarios are mostly family-friendly, but some veer slightly out of the G-rated range. For instance, one set-up involves an apparently blind man pretending to pee on inner-tube riders at a theme park. As the park-goers calmly float down a man-made river in their bathing suits, the "blind" man squirts them with a tube he holds at crotch level. Reactions range from frantic paddling out of the way to jumping up out of the water to chase the apparent culprit. Viewers looking for light entertainment that isn't quite as clever as the classic Candid Camera but has a little more class than America's Funniest Home Videos will enjoy Just for Laughs.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about hidden-camera shows. Is it funny or mean to subject people to the type of pranks seen on this show? What does it feel like to be the one in the spotlight when others are laughing? How should a person handle being the subject of a joke? What's the difference between laughing at someone and laughing with them? Which do you see more of in the media? Families can also discuss how people react to surprising situations. What do people's different reactions to the same scenario tell you about them? What does it mean when everyone reacts the same way?

TV details

Cast:Rick Miller
Network:ABC
Genre:Comedy
TV rating:TV-PG

This review of Just for Laughs was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Teen, 13 years old Written byschuymarch1 April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Number 1

This is way better than America's Funniest Home Videos.
Teen, 16 years old Written byUSCTrojan June 1, 2012
AGE
11
QUALITY
 

That's what i call COOMMMMEDDDYYY

Funny

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