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The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Lockdown is a series filmed entirely by webcam and smartphone that centers on a group of teens quarantined by a pandemic who attempt to solve a mystery in their neighborhood. Their investigation hints at a possible murder, and the story has moments of suspense as the teens put together the pieces of what happened, but there's no definitive violence shown or even indicators of such beyond an occasional scream. The teens' relationships are complicated at times by crushes and romantic triangles, but their friendship -- facilitated by tech tools like video chats -- helps keep them centered and managing the stress of life under quarantine rules. They support each other and demonstrate teamwork, and they're a diverse group.
What's the story?
LOCKDOWN follows six teens as they attempt to solve a presumed murder in their neighborhood. The story is set during a period of lockdown, so social distancing friends interact via chat features on their phones and laptops. After Nira (Saara Chaudry, Dino Dana) overhears what sounds like a woman's scream one night, she enlists the help of her friends Emi (Amanda Cheung), Sam (Arista Arhin), Aiden (Dorian Giordano), Chris (Tomaso Sanelli), and Luke (Edison Grant) to uncover the truth about what took place at her neighbor's house. As the teens work to piece together clues, they also support each other emotionally through the turbulent experience of being quarantined.
Is it any good?
This enjoyable, fresh series adapts a traditional whodunnit story to the 2020-era pandemic experience of being homebound for weeks on end. As Nira's world becomes smaller and boredom sets in after weeks of quarantine, a sudden mystery quickly and completely consumes her attention. At first her friends dismiss her concern, but as time passes and the mystery grows, they are drawn in as well, and their own sense of paranoia escalates.
Lockdown doubles as a modern spin on Rear Window-style suspense and a more realistic, revealing glimpse into the teens' psyche during a period of compulsory quarantine. Nira and her friends find solace from loneliness and boredom in their ability to interact virtually, which allows them to collaborate even while they maintain a safe physical distance from each other. As they share their experiences, they give voice to a generation of young people who can relate in varying degrees to their frustrations with such an abrupt and lengthy upheaval of their lives. Kids might be inspired to create their own show following this format, or explore classic mystery books and movies.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how their own quarantine experiences compare to those of Nira and her friends. Lockdown suggests the characters truly were homebound for weeks on end. How do they cope with the boredom? What did you do if you sheltered in place?
How does technology allow people to keep in touch from great distances or in circumstances like quarantine? How do you separate technology use for valuable purposes like that from more general screen time? What rules does your family have about screen time?
A recurring theme in this story is emotional well-being. How do you safeguard your own emotional health in difficult circumstances? How does prioritizing your mental health contribute to better self-control and improved relationships with others?
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.
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