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Man and Wife
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 sex information show -- which started as a popular online series -- is intended for mature audiences. It's full of strong sexual innuendo and discussions about various sexual behaviors, which often include crude/strong language ("ass," "dong," "nuts," "damn"; stronger words, like "f--k" and "p---y," are bleeped) and iffy behavior. It's not the most educational of shows (the hosts aren't therapists and don't offer professional advice), but it does encourage safe sex and welcomes people from all racial/ethnic communities and sexual orientations to participate.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
MAN AND WIFE -- which started its life as a popular Web/podcast series -- is a sex information show hosted by rap music promoter Isaac "Fat Man Scoop" Freeman and his wife, Shanda. Though they're not professional therapists, the couple dispenses advice about sex and relationships based on their own personal experiences. Sitting in bed armed with laptop computers, they answer questions submitted via email, voice mail, and by their studio audience. Excerpts from their interactive Web series are also aired throughout each episode.
Is it any good?
Overall, the series is designed to entertain rather than educate, with Scoop and Shanda offering their unique perspectives on issues ranging from improving various sexual practices to choosing the correct "accessory." While Shanda approaches most questions within the context of love and relationships, Scoop revels in his ability to swear (though most words are fully bleeped) and offer crude commentary about sex acts, genitals, and other topics. Meanwhile, online and studio audiences ask questions that are often intended to titillate or even impress those who are tuning in.
In between the tasteless bits are the more positive moments. Scoop and Shanda clearly state that their personal rules include respecting yourself and your partner and practicing safe sex. They talk about the necessity for communication and compromise to maintain a relationship, and they openly invite people from all racial/ethnic backgrounds and sexualities to participate in their dialogue. Bottom line? Adults who like this sort of thing may find it entertaining or marginally informative, but the series isn't appropriate for kids.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about whether television is an appropriate forum to get (or offer) sexual advice. Why or why not? When does a TV show discussing sexual issues cross the line from being informative to just entertainment? Families can also discuss what happens when shows that start out online make the move to television. What kinds of changes do Web shows have to undergo in order to be "TV ready"? Why do you think some shows get moved from one medium to another?