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 this sitcom is based on the popular Twitter feed "s--tmydadsays," which was created by a twentysomething who posts his father's crude musings for the whole world to see. But while the feed's uncensored tweets include words like "f--k" and "s--t," the show bleeps the word "s--t" in its title and leans on body part humor and low-level swearing like "jackass," "hell," "bitch," and "crap." There's some mild sexual innuendo, too, along with occasional jokes about drinking and some comedic violence.
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What's the story?
In $#*! MY DAD SAYS, twentysomething magazine writer Henry (Jonathan Sadowski) loses his job and can't pay rent, forcing him to ask his straight-talking, 72-year-old father, Ed (William Shatner), for a helping hand in the form of some money and a place to stay until he gets back on his feet. But verbally abrasive Ed and artistically tempered Henry have never had the kind of father-son relationship Henry hoped for, which makes peaceful cohabitation even more implausible. Will Sasso and Nicole Sullivan co-star as Henry's half-brother and sister-in-law, respectively.
Is it any good?
Fans of Justin Halpern's profanity-driven Twitter feed will be sorely disappointed with this ill-conceived adaptation that essentially kills the essence of the content that inspired it. But thinking you could take a man who doles out gems like "Does anyone your age know how to comb their f--king hair? It looks like two squirrels crawled on their head and started f--king" and sanitize his rants for prime time was a bad idea in the first place.
Producers are clearly pinning the show's hopes on Shatner and the kooky cult of personality that surrounds him. But, in truth, this role doesn't really suit him, and his distracting habit of looking just off-camera when delivering some lines (almost as if he were reading a cue card) isn't helping. We will say that he looks awfully good for 79 (yes, 79)...so much so that he almost isn't believable as a 72-year-old.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about social media tools like Twitter, as well as the popularity of books, movies, and TV shows that are based on blogged content. Has the rise of social media changed the way that other types of media are created and marketed? Do most bloggers expect their posts to lead to some level of fame or recognition?
Parents might not want their kids reading the original Twitter feed that the show is based on, but they can talk about how the two compare. Is the show funny even if it's not as vulgar as the content that inspired it?
Why would a network want to adapt something that's based almost entirely on the "funniness" of foul language if they can't air most of the best lines?
Why does lewd language get laughs? Does hearing certain words used for the sake comedy make you more inclined to say them yourself?