L.A.'s Finest

TV review by
Jenny Nixon, Common Sense Media
L.A.'s Finest TV Poster Image
Uninspired female-led action-comedy has violence, language.

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 4 reviews

Kids say

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

On the whole, characters seem pretty cynical, although when it comes to family and kids, a certain protectiveness kicks in.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Main characters are women of color in powerful positions at work -- however, they often rely on violence and secrecy to deal with their problems.

Violence

Action movie-style violence includes car chases (and crashes), guns, explosions, fistfights. Scenes in a gun shop, with plenty of camerawork focused on bullets, big machine guns.

Sex

No nudity or sex, but there are jokes and innuendo throughout. Characters walk in on a man in a bondage session with a sex worker, both dressed in leather gear; the man is being whipped. The female leads sometimes use seduction as a tool in their investigations, crawling in men's laps, nibbling on their necks. 

Language

Expletives include "s--t," "d--k," "balls," "damn," "bitch," "ass," "t-ts," "a--hole."

Consumerism

Some incidental shots of car brands. Throwback reference to film this show was spawned from includes references to Bubblicious gum and Skittles candy.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Some drinking in club and bar settings. A cop rolls a joint with someone and they both smoke. Drug dealers trade in substances like heroin and fentanyl.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that L.A.'s Finest is an action-comedy series that is an offshoot of the highly popular Bad Boys film franchise. The series stars Gabrielle Union (who played Martin Lawrence's younger sister, Syd Burnett, in Bad Boys II) and Dark Angel's Jessica Alba -- along with other familiar faces like Zach Gilford (Friday Night Lights) and Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters, Grace and Frankie). There's frequent violence, which can be quite graphic; for example, a gnarly slow-motion shot of a bullet boring a hole into a man's forehead, with blood gushing out. Gunplay is a constant presence here, from convenience store shoot-outs to one-on-one threats, and language includes "s--t" and "d--k." One of the main characters is seen getting out of bed in only her underwear after a hookup; a cop rolls a joint for a sex worker and they smoke together.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byTazzb August 14, 2020

All over the place

This show tries too desperately to cling to the bad boys theme, only they're women and they're no Martin and Will. It just feels forced and that there... Continue reading
Adult Written byMattyandrews January 19, 2021

Amazing Show!

This show is one of favorites!

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

L.A.'S FINEST is an action-comedy spinoff series inspired by the hit film series Bad Boys. Gabrielle Union reprises her film role as Syd Burnett, an ex-DEA agent who has left Miami to make a name for herself as a detective within the LAPD. Jessica Alba plays her partner, Nancy McKenna, a slightly uptight wife (her husband's an up-and-coming district attorney) and stepmom who has a complicated past. Together, the women work to protect kidnapped kids, bust up drug cartels, and learn to get along as both co-workers and friends.

Is it any good?

Gabrielle Union does a lot of heavy lifting here; her confidence and charisma are the show's main assets -- but it's not enough to buoy the mediocre storylines. It usually employs "bad guy of the week" plots with far too many goofy in-jokes, and nods to the film franchise that inspired it are constant. The show is also seemingly at a loss when it comes to keeping Syd and Nancy's character development consistent; their basic personalities change on a whim to suit the plot, and Alba is never really believable as an ex-Navy ballistics expert.

And for a show that seems to enjoy pumping up the "female empowerment" angle, L.A.'s Finest sure does revel in objectifying its female leads. Never in the history of law enforcement has a lipgloss had such staying power. It's hard to imagine an audience sticking with this series for very long, especially since the show can't really nail down what it's trying to say.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about other films that have been spun off into television shows. How many examples can you think of? Which have made the transition most successfully, in your opinion? Did L.A.'s Finest make a successful transition?

  • What elements make for a good police show? Is it the plotlines? The characters? The action? How does mixing in other genres, like comedy, help or hinder a show?

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love action

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