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 this fantasy spoof has plenty of action, but the slapstick swordfights are played for laughs instead of thrills. Most of the characters are stock stereotypes or one-note cliches -- the sadistic overlord, the dumb giant, etc. -- including a few that might raise eyebrows, including an effeminate gay man and a woman whose defining trait seems to be her easy sexual availability. There's not too much swearing or nudity, but expect lots of lowbrow humor and sexual references and some drinking.
What's the story?
Krod Mandoon (Sean Maguire) is the brave and daring -- though not especially bright -- leader of a band of plucky freedom fighters who've vowed to overthrow the sadistic Chancellor Dongalor (Matt Lucas). He's aided in this mission by his girlfriend Aneka (India de Beaufort), a strong fighter with an equally strong libido; the not-so-powerful wizard Zezelryck; and the not-so-bright giant Loquasto -- and, of course, Krod's own intermittently flaming sword (which he often misplaces).
Is it any good?
Don't expect much depth from KROD MANDOON AND THE FLAMING SWORD OF FIRE. The swords 'n' sorcery spoof is simplistic and silly, the characters are broadly drawn stereotypes, and the action scenes aren't particularly impressive. But Maguire's earnest portrayal of Mandoon is entertaining, and the premise is fun. The show sets the bar low and manages to clear it.
That said, there are a few questionable points. The newest member of the rebel force is Bruce, whose chief character trait seems to be that he's gay. And not just a guy who likes guys -- his character is extremely stereotyped in a way that seems very dated and borders on offensive. And Aneka, besides her impressive skills with a knife, is notable mainly for her sexual appetite. She describes herself as having an open attitude toward sex -- which in this case means she'll sleep with just about anyone. She's fine with her choices, but it's clearly a sore point for Krod, and the rest of the group often derides her lifestyle. The show isn't complicated, and it's certainly not politically correct, but it's reasonably amusing.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about spoofs and satire. How is a spoof different than a satire? Do you need to be familiar with the things a spoof is making fun of in order to enjoy the humor?
How does the show compare to big-screen send-ups of other genres, such as the Scary Movie franchise? What makes a spoof work?
How do the characters in this series compare to those in other movies and shows that feature wizards, magic, and swordfights?