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 police procedural is heavy on the paranormal and includes in-depth discussion of reincarnation, past lives, and how these concepts intersect with mysterious deaths. The investigations sometimes uncover vicious crimes -- which occasionally include sexual violence -- though not too much graphic stuff is shown on screen. The characters occasionally drink and go to bars.
What's the story?
After a personal tragedy forces him to leave the force, NYPD detective Price Whatley (Nicholas Bishop) takes a job helping Dr. Kate McGinn (Kelli Giddish) investigate mysterious deaths. The catch? McGinn is an expert in reincarnation, and their only clues come from her clients -- ordinary people who are beset with strange visions that seem to come from a PAST LIFE and often include details about how someone died. Whatley's skepticism is tested by situations that seem to have paranormal explanations.
Is it any good?
Past Life plays much like other police procedurals. There’s a case, usually involving death, and just a few tiny clues. Whatley and McGinn are forced to trust their instincts, even when others think they’re following outlandish hunches. Whatley, always a pragmatic cop, is reluctant to believe in McGinn’s theories about reincarnation, but he’s slowly won over after clients continue to uncover long-hidden crimes using knowledge that could only come from the victim.
But without the twist that the tiny scraps of information may come from beyond the grave, this show doesn’t really stand out from the procedural pack. Watching Past Life could give viewers the sense that sometime, somewhere, they’ve already seen this show.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how the violence in this show compares to other crime procedurals. What is shown and what is just implied?
What do you think about reincarnation? Do you believe people are reborn after death? What do you think happens to the spirit after death? Do the past-life memories presented on this show seem realistic?
Does detective Price Whatley believe in reincarnation? How do his investigations affect his views? How does his pragmatic mind reconcile his doubts with his experiences? Have you ever had an experience that seemed to have an otherworldly explanation?
Our editors recommend
For kids who love law enforcement
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.
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