By Melissa Camacho,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Voyeuristic therapist-themed reality show is adult-oriented.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The show sends the message that therapists are not perfect people, but have the same problems as everyone else. It also showcases some of the different ways therapists work with clients, and inadvertently raises some questions about client privacy.
Positive Role Models
The therapists help their patients make better choices, but don't always make the smartest decisions in their personal lives.
Violence & Scariness
One therapist specializes in anger issues; yelling, screaming, and arguing is sometimes visible, sometimes in a therapeutic setting.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Many of the conversations contain strong sexual content; themes like intimacy, pleasure, dysfunction, infidelity, and related problems are frequent. Genitals are often referred to as "d-cks" and "cl-ts," and terms like "screw" and "laid" are used. Both opposite- and same-sex relationships are discussed; opposite- and same-sex kissing is visible. People are shown in their underwear or in various stages of undress (no nudity). One therapist describes views her job as a balance between being a priest and being a prostitute.
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Words like "damn," "hell," "ass," "cl-t," "d-ck," and "bitch" are audible and frequent; curses like "a--hole," "s--t" and "f--k" are frequently used, but bleeped.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Drinking (wine, champagne, cocktails, beer) is frequently shown outside of therapy sessions. At least one therapist frequently smokes cigarettes.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the reality series L.A. Shrinks, which features therapists conducting sessions and dealing with problems in their individual personal lives, contains a lot of sexual content, including blunt conversations about sexual activity, crude sexual references, and conversations about how to alleviate these problems. Issues like rage and homophobia are also discussed. The language is pretty strong, too. Drinking and cigarette smoking is frequent. The series doesn't offer constructive advice, and is not intended for kids.
Where to Watch
Based on 1 parent review
NOT Worth Watching
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What's the Story?
L.A. SHRINKS is a reality series that features three high-end Los Angeles therapists working with clients while figuring out their own personal lives. It stars blunt human behaviorist Venus Nicolino, cognitive therapist Greg Cason, and Eris Huemer, who specializes in relationship problems. Cameras roll as the therapists each meet with select clients to help them work through things like anger management, intimacy problems, and coming to terms with their own sexuality. But outside of their offices, each of the therapists are working through conflicts in their own personal lives.
Is It Any Good?
L.A. Shrinks offers an intimate look at the lives of the three upscale therapists to underscore the idea that they deal with the same kinds of behavioral issues and problems as their clients in their daily lives. Adding to the drama are the therapy sessions between each of the therapists and some of their select clients, in which very intimate issues are discussed. To link the two, the therapists often draw parallels between what their clients are dealing with, and the problems they are facing in their own personal lives.
Like most reality shows, L.A. Shrinks attempts to create voyeuristic entertainment from moments that would normally be very private. But what is troubling here is that many of these intimate moments are drawn from seemingly professional therapy sessions, the effectiveness of which usually relies on privacy to be successful. The result is a series that sends problematic messages about what therapy is really about, while offering TV audiences a chance to satisfy their desire for a guilty pleasure with lots of salacious content.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about why people agree to talk about their personal problems on a reality series. Why do you think these therapists agreed to work with clients on camera? Are these clients even real? Is this is an appropriate thing for therapists to do, even when their clients agree to it? Do you think their decision to appear on this show will have consequences on their practice?
Who is the audience for this show? How can you tell?
- Premiere date: March 4, 2013
- Cast: Eris Huemer, Greg Cason, Venus Nicolino
- Network: Bravo
- Genre: Reality TV
- TV rating: NR
- Last updated: September 20, 2019
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