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 series, which follows mall security in the Mall of America, shows people arguing, being chased, tackled, and being thrown into police cars after causing a disturbance or attempting to shoplift. Some patrons are drunk; in one episode a man’s backside is briefly visible after an altercation. Words like “bastard” are audible, while stronger language is fully bleeped. Stores like Bloomingdales, Nordstroms, and Victoria’s Secret are visible and/or discussed.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
MALL COPS: MALL OF AMERICA is a reality series that follows security officers as they patrol America’s largest shopping mall. Cameras follow folks like the Director of Security Doug Reynolds, Sergeant Ashley Rowe, and officers like Beau Johnson and rookie Kyle Maitrejean as they question curious looking shoppers, confront drunk patrons, and assist people with medical emergencies. With the assistance of Bloomington, Minnesota police officers, they also attempt to rein in alleged shoplifters and other potentially threatening individuals.
Is it any good?
The show’s overall goal is to legitimize the work that security officers perform in order to make the giant shopping center a safe place to visit. In order to do so, it attempts to make mundane events (like walking through the corridors on a busy day) appear more exciting than what they are. The mall cops also seem to target people that simply look and/or act differently than the mainstream rather then looking out for real security risks.
While what these officers are doing is clearly important, there are moments when they just seem to be trying too hard to be taken seriously. Their inability to cite people for anything beyond trespassing without the help of the local police doesn’t really help their image either. Bottom line? Viewers looking for a bit of police reality thrill should keep shopping around.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about mall cops. What are some of the stereotypes about security guards in malls and shopping centers? How does the media contribute to these stereotypes? Do you think this reality series will help eliminate them?
What is shopping in the Mall of America really like? Did you know that people come from around the world to visit this mall? Why do you think that is? Do you think this is why it was chosen for this reality show?