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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
In the tiny Texas town of Midnight, misfits find support and solace in banding together. "Usually I'm the freak in the room," says Manfred in the show's pilot, remarking on the welcoming atmosphere. On the other hand, these otherworldly residents often solve problems with force, rather than reason, or even trickery.
Positive Role Models
Manfred treats both the living and the dead with dignity, and tries to help when he sees a problem or someone in pain. Other characters are more complex: Lemuel, for example, is a vampire who kills, but only "bad guys" who "deserve it."
Violence & Scariness
Violence may be particularly disturbing to young/sensitive viewers, with dead, gory bodies opening their eyes, speaking, sometimes even attacking various characters. Manfred sees and speaks to dead people, including his ghostly white grandmother, who has spooky gray eyes, and dead people who relive their violent deaths, shrieking, getting shot. One main character is a hired killer; we see characters suddenly dispatched with knives, arrows, and guns, and by vampire bite. There are fistfights, mortal threats, an undead drowned woman who gurgles when she tries to speak, many more nightmarish visuals.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Most of the main characters are single and hot. Expect flirting, dating, kissing, and unusual sexual practices, such as a moment in the pilot when a woman removes her clothes (no private parts are seen) and sits on the lap of a naked vampire and moans ecstatically. It's not clear what they're doing. But it's clearly sexual. There are also jokes about and references to sex: "Why don't you just jump him already?"
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Cursing: "hell," "damn," and "bitch."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Expect adults to drink alcohol at parties and dinners.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Midnight, Texas is a drama about a small town with a lot of supernatural residents and strange goings-on. Violence is within scary-network-show norms, but may be particularly intense for young/sensitive viewers. Main character Manfred sees and communicates with dead people -- he sees them with the injuries they had at the moment of death; they may be ghostly white or gray with dark, unnatural eyes. Sometimes dead bodies do things like suddenly turning their heads and opening their eyes. Manfred also hears ghostly memories: gunshots, people threatening each other. Another character is a vampire and sucks blood from humans and kills them; still another is a werewolf, and another a witch -- expect supernatural deaths and attacks. Oh, and still another character is a hired killer. Expect sexy stuff, too, including flirting, dating, kissing, jokes about and references to sex. Cursing is mild: the occasional "hell" or "damn," and a couple of women call another woman a "bitch."
Is It Any Good?
Zippy, silly, and fun, this drama operates in the unhinged True Blood mode -- which makes sense, since Charlaine Harris authored both of these book series turned TV shows. NBC is clearly hoping lightning will strike twice with Harris's creations, and for the most part, it has. Like True Blood, Midnight, Texas deftly weaves realistic conflicts -- fitting in, romance, finding suitable work -- into far-out fantasy plots. Just how did a vampire, a psychic, a witch, a werewolf, some kind of winged angel, and a bunch of other assorted creatures of the night find their way to this tiny Texas burg where the veil is thin between the living and the dead? Is the town drawing them to itself? For what purpose? What's the end game here?
While that big question hangs in the air, viewers will be pleasantly entertained by a multitude of side stories: romances and dark power-hungry plots and mysterious pasts -- that sort of thing -- all enlivened by spooky gardens, terrified local teenagers who dare each other to walk up Midnight's country roads after dark, Ouija boards, pentagrams, cats who talk, and ghosts who turn into pillars of smoke. The show seldom stops to explain how any of this could be, and you won't care anyway. Just sit back, take in the high horror-gothic drama, and enjoy this fresh guilty pleasure.
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.