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 while the crimes and criminals being discussed aren't glorified, this show does delve into the disturbing details of horrific crimes. Dramatic narration, crime-scene imagery, and real video footage add a level of exposé-style intensity. Scientific methods and analysis offer an educational component, but parents need to know that this program frankly discusses disturbing psychopathic behaviors including cannibalism, child molestation, and torture.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Discovery Channel's MOST EVIL delves into the personal history, horrific crimes, and motivations of infamous killers like Ted Bundy, the BTK killer and Aileen Wuornos (pictured) in order to answer this question: What drives people to commit such horrific acts? The show features leading experts in psychology and neurology (from esteemed institutions such as Harvard, Columbia, and USC) -- including the host, forensic psychiatrist Dr. Michael Stone -- as they uncover and analyze the physiological and psychological traits and personal experiences of psychotic killers and cold-blooded, psychopathic liars. Is it possible to be born evil?
Is it any good?
The science and investigative approaches presented are fascinating, as are the featured experts and professionals (fields include biology, psychology, and criminology). The show invites discussion and further research of various careers in forensics, psychology, neurology, biology, criminal profiling, and other areas. It also presents good examples of scientific research, methodology, and analysis.
That said, a lot of time is dedicated to describing notorious crimes and criminals in dramatic fashion. Overall, it's interesting and informative, but a decent portion is devoted to slickly produced dramatic effects.Most Evil's borderline-sensational approach keeps the audience's attention, but its sometimes heavy-handed tactics eat up precious minutes that could be better spent on the fascinating scientific evidence. There's certainly an educational component to the show, but the content is questionable for all except mature older teens, and, when combined with the dramatic production (sinister music, a dark narrative tone, and crime scene images), may be too disturbing for younger or more sensitive viewers.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the methods and analysis used by different types of professionals to determine what makes notorious criminals tick. How is evidence from varying sciences combined to create a more complete profile of the criminal mind? How can scientific evidence help in crime prevention and in diagnosing mental disorders? This program also invites discussion of the most severe psychological disorders and the factors behind them.