Men of a Certain Age

Common Sense Media says

Men muddle through middle age in honest, mature dramedy.

Age(i)

2
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Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Although life is complicated for the three middle-aged friends at the center of this drama -- who have plenty of dysfunction and other challenges to deal with -- their bond of friendship is an important lifeline as they muddle through.

Positive role models

The three longtime friends are very human, with very human foibles. One has a gambling problem, one seems to have commitment issues and is terminally underemployed, and the third works at his father's auto dealership but chafes under his father’s control. They may not be the best role models, but many viewers will probably identify with at least one of them.

Violence

Some heated arguments, but no fighting. One character is goaded into a confrontation but backs down before it can become anything more than an uncomfortable situation.

Sex

The three main characters, all middle-aged men, talk about sex and sexual situations often, though not usually explicitly. There's some flirting and the occasional suggestion of sexual activity, but no actual sex scenes or nudity.

Language

A fair amount of swearing, including “s--t,” “dick,” “boobs,” “dildo,” and more.

Consumerism

One main character works at a Chevrolet dealership and often mentions car models by name, such as Corvette. Another sometimes mentions his Flomax prescription.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Some drinking by adults at parties.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this dramedy -- which focuses on three middle-aged male friends facing various life challenges, both personal and professional -- touches on complex issues like divorce, gambling problems, and family relationships. While not meant for kids, the show's situations will seem very real to adults, and they demonstrate how everyone makes life choices that take them to different places. While some of these paths may look appealing to people who've gone in other directions, the series makes it clear that every choice has pros and cons. Expect strong language (including "s--t"), some drinking, and plenty of talk about sex (but not too much on-screen action).

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Longtime friends Joe (Ray Romano), Terry (Scott Bakula), and Owen (Andre Braugher) have reached a stage in their lives when choices made years ago are starting to catch up with them. Firmly ensconced in their middle-aged years, the trio now has very different lives, and none of them is quite certain that this is what they wanted. Joe is getting a divorce and struggles with a gambling problem. Owen, a dedicated family man who works at his father’s auto dealership, is trying to climb the ladder of success despite his dad’s petty efforts to put him down. And Terry is an underemployed actor/office temp who prefers to date younger women and avoids commitment. As they navigate the shoals of middle age, the trio falls back on their friendship to help get through the more difficult situations.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

The men in MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE all seem very real, and the show's strength lies in situations that seem like they could happen to anyone. There’s no outrageous drama here -- just regular people trying to get through life. Viewers looking for simple escapism won’t find it, but they probably will find characters who will seen familiar to anyone who’s ever wondered whether the grass really is greener at their neighbor’s house. Joe and Owen may be slightly jealous of Terry’s string of young girlfriends, for example, but it seems like Terry's starting to wonder whether he’s missing out on family life.

The acting makes these average-Joe men come to life, especially Romano as the newly separated dad who misses his kids and can’t seem to figure out whether he’s actually single and whether the family he worked so hard to create is really and truly fractured for good. Braugher, too, excels as a man who has to deal with a tyrannical father and boss every day, reining in years of frustration. Just like the rest of us, they’re looking for a way to get the life they want -- despite the hurdles that the real world throws in their way.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about life choices. How are the three main characters' lives different, and how did each one get there? Can you think of any significant choices you've made in your own life?

  • Do the show's situations and characters seem realistic? How does it compare to other dramas or comedies about middle-aged family situations?

TV details

Cast:Andre Braugher, Ray Romano, Scott Bakula
Network:TNT
Genre:Drama
TV rating:TV-MA
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of Men of a Certain Age was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Teen, 13 years old Written bydwiggit101 December 27, 2009
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

Great show for teens and adults!

I really love this show! I haven't missed an episode yet. I like it because it seems very real and you can relate to the characters. Some strong language, though. Other than that, it's AWESOME!
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 15 years old Written bycross_breed December 22, 2009
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

For Those Who Like a Little Substance With Their Entertainment

A thoroughly enjoyable show. It's funny at some parts and it'll move you at others. The cast are all very flawed, That is to say, they're people, unlike most movie and television protagonists. The only real content concern is the language. Some use of s--t and liberal use of d--k. That's about it for content. However, most children probably won't want to watch this anyway.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Great messages

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