Monsters Inside Me

TV review by
Anne Louise Bannon, Common Sense Media
Monsters Inside Me TV Poster Image
Show about nasty parasites isn't for the faint of stomach.

Parents say

age 10+
Based on 4 reviews

Kids say

age 10+
Based on 5 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive messages

While the show includes warnings about how to avoid these diseases, the series also points out regularly that parasitic disease is extremely rare, especially in the United States.

Positive role models & representations

Several scenes feature doctors and scientists who talk about parasites with a certain amount of passion for discovery, which might encourage kids to get interested in science.

Violence

Lots of talk about bloodthirsty bugs and what they do (like eating a child's brain from the inside out...), and lots of animation of parasites like worms floating and applying themselves to different body tissues. On up side, this isn't humans reacting in rage -- it's parasitic insects and microbes doing what they do.

Sex

Several mentions of parasites mating, and one CGI animated sequence of two getting intimate -- but they don't look like anything remotely human.

Language

This being a show about diseases, there's mention of feces, fecal matter, and, in one case, swelling scrotum and testicles. But the words are used in their proper clinical context.

Consumerism
Drinking, drugs & smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the gross-out "yuck" factor is extremely high in this show about ootentially deadly parasites -- in fact, it's kind of the point. Sensitive kids (or adults!) could easily be scared or made paranoid by the animation of the different parasites and what they do inside human bodies. Other than that, though, there's not much content of concern.

User Reviews

Parent of a 6 and 8 year old Written byPorcupineSnuggles January 31, 2014

Not all that icky for a family of scientists

This is one of my six-year-old's favorite shows (second only to Mythbusters). The host and the doctors they interview during the segments do a really good... Continue reading
Parent of a 17 year old Written byMantis August 31, 2009

It's good

This show is educative for children to know exactly where you can find this viruses so the children know how to protect themselves.
Teen, 17 years old Written byfunkyrooster707 October 20, 2014

This is the best show on Animal planet!

It not only teaches teens and adults about parasites, and reminds children to protect themselves from the various bacteria and parasites, But it inspires you to... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written bybkid August 13, 2010

What's the story?

Only safe for those with strong intestinal fortitude, each episode of MONSTERS INSIDE ME looks at case studies about different aspects of parasitic infection and disease. There's lots of gross-out narration and animation, and some pretty scary bugs -- from bedbugs to roundworms and many, many more.

Is it any good?

The  show's producers are apparently aware that half the attraction of a show like this is the gross-out factor, and they certainly play it up. But there's also some good information here, and while the narration is somewhat hyped up -- in one case, for instance, a parasite is described as eating a child's brain from the inside out -- it's not repeated endlessly (and, in fact, that's exactly what the parasite did to the child).

Also, the producers are pretty good about providing perspective on the actual incidence of the featured diseases -- one parasite, for example, is fairly common in Southeast Asia but extremely rare in the United States, while another parasite, while more common, very rarely infects humans. Bottom line? The real fun of this show is making folks go "eeew!" and it's very successful at that.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the fact that many of the featured stories happened years ago. Can you figure out which scenes are re-enacted and which aren't?

  • Parents can also ask their kids whether they think the show creates fear about something that's really very unlikely. Or is it ultimately reassuring? Is the show's intent to educate or sensationalize?

TV details

For kids who love creepy crawlies

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