MAD

TV review by
Will Wade, Common Sense Media
MAD TV Poster Image
Sometimes crude animated satire is sure to appeal to boys.

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 32 reviews

Kids say

age 10+
Based on 218 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive messages

Anything that’s a hit with fans -- especially all of the big movies and TV shows -- is ripe for being taken down a notch with well-done parody, which simultaneously makes fun of something while also recognizing its pop-culture value. That’s the formula that MAD magazine has perfected over the years, and while it's not outright mean-spirited in most cases, there's no concretely positive take-away, either.

Positive role models & representations

The artists behind MAD don’t take themselves too seriously, nor do they take anyone or anyone else too seriously.

Violence

Some parodies of popular films and TV shows feature over-the-top explosions and shootouts, but it’s all played for laughs.

Sex

Plenty of ribald references, but the humor is mostly based on bodily functions other than sex -- think poop and puke jokes.

Language

Mild swearing, such as “turd."

Consumerism

The show includes many spoofs of well-known movies and TV shows, such as Avaturd and Star Blech.

Drinking, drugs & smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this animated series leaps straight from the pages of venerable satire classic MAD magazine and offers the same parodies of popular TV shows and movies and other sketches. The jokes come fast and furious and are both witty and juvenile – in other words, exactly the kind of thing that will appeal to tween and teen boys. Much of the humor is ribald and/or crude, but the focus is much more on bodily functions (i.e. farts, poop, and puke) than on sex. And though there's no real swearing or sex, some parents might still find the humor too vulgar.

User Reviews

Adult Written byKatakama June 24, 2011

Just plain awful

This show is just disgusting and I fail to see how it hasn't been canceled yet. This is a terrible, disgusting, often cruel, sketch compilation show. There...
Adult Written byJEDI micah March 27, 2012

STUPID JUST GOT FUNNY!!!

The first time I saw this show, I WAS LAUGHING MY HEAD AND BUTT OFF!!! It is so silly and hilarious at the same time! To me, this show is like a kid-friendly ve...
Teen, 14 years old Written byJusticeSeeker March 23, 2011

The immaturity of it all makes my head spin

Although I can understand why some children may like this show, I disagree with the message it brings. The show is all about picking on other things or people,...
Kid, 9 years old September 18, 2010

Not appropriate for any age.

I waited three 12-minute episodes to officially voice my opinion, and now here it is: this show is crude, violent, and not for kids. The FIRST EPISODE parodies...

What's the story?

For decades, MAD magazine has set itself as an arbiter of pop culture impact; a TV show or movie isn’t a certifiable hit if it hasn’t been spoofed in the venerable comic’s pages. The animated MAD series brings the magazine's classic send-ups from the pages to the screen, complete with crudely twisted titles (Avaturd), lowbrow potty humor, and nonstop quips. If there’s a cheap laugh to be had at someone’s expense, MAD will take it. The fast-and-furious comedy is clever, but it also aims low, with plenty of vulgar one-liners and a heavy focus on bodily functions.

Is it any good?

MAD magazine has perfected its unique form of satire over the years: The jokes come so quickly that you hardly have time to notice that they're both outrageously unsubtle and amazingly witty. Just because the target audience seems to be tween/teen boys, there’s no reason for the humor to be completely simplistic. The magazine, and the show, clearly have a finger on the pulse of the entertainment world, and, now, decades after its debut, MAD is still able to spot -- and tweak -- the "big moment" in popular culture.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about parody. Do you find the MAD-style spoofs funny? How do they compare to other satires?

  • Why do some people find bodily humor jokes funny while others think they're gross? How does humor "work"?

  • What does it indicate when a show or movie gets the MAD treatment?

TV details

For kids who love comedy

Our editors recommend

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