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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Celebrities (Melania Trump, Steve Harvey) and pop culture events are mocked, more gently than cynically. Some jokes "punch down," mocking the overweight and the stupid.
Positive Role Models
The cast boasts good racial and ethnic diversity; Maya Rudolph, a woman of color, is the executive producer and star. The stars are multitalented and have worked hard to get to where they are.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Jokes about "smashing" (casual sex/a booty call).
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Racial language: A guest star is called a "Jew" in a derogative way; jokes about Jewish people being litigation-happy and full of rage. Rude jokes about grunting on the toilet, bidets, and urination. Infrequent cursing: "hell," "damn," "ass."
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Products & Purchases
Frequent product placement. One sketch alone contains mentions of other NBC shows (Chicago Fire), brands (the Radisson, Apple) and products (Burger King's chicken fries).
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
References to being drunk.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Maya & Marty is a variety show with sketches and musical performances from its hosts and guests. Jokes veer toward the rude, with gags about urination, grunting on the toilet, and "smashing" (casual sex). Cursing is infrequent and includes "hell," "damn," and "ass." Some sketches make reference to drinking and being drunk. Other jokes "punch down," making fun of the overweight. Very frequent product placement, including jokes about and visual references to celebrities, products, and brands. It's pretty cheesy, but some teens will enjoy the "SNL-lite" vibe.
Is It Any Good?
At times this sketch show reaches chuckling heights, but all too often it feels like a so-so episode of SNL despite the gifted performers working hard to entertain. Maya Rudolph, the driving force behind the show, is clearly in her element, and it's a treat to watch her dancing and singing, as when she pops into Miley Cyrus' musical performance to join her for the big finish. In fact, the show's musical moments are the highlight here -- it's always going to be fun to watch people who can sing and dance do their stuff, and Maya & Marty pulls off a charmingly retro tap-dancing number that would have been at home on a Busby Berkeley stage.
It's during the sketches that the show loses steam. Many of the ideas seem half-baked; they start out promisingly but don't go anywhere. In one sketch, Rudolph plays a bemused Melania Trump, who loves diamonds so much she's decided to make edible ones. That's it. That's the entire idea of the sketch, which goes on for three minutes and seems two minutes and 45 seconds too long. In another, Short and guest star Jimmy Fallon play twins who appear on a kid's talent show. The sketch starts promisingly enough: Kenan Thompson doing his Steve Harvey face, Fallon and Short in flamenco shirts and red pageboy wigs. And then nothing happens. It feels as if the writers came up with the concepts but trailed off when it came to writing the jokes. The whole show reads as a watered-down SNL rife with product placement -- half a dozen products and brands appear in the first sketch alone -- that you don't have to stay up (too) late for.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.