Phil of the Future

Common Sense Media says

Harmless, cliché-ridden young teen misadventures.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Phil's younger sister is a mean, selfish, manipulative bratty kid, and her behavior is played for laughs, though she generally is "taught a lesson" by the end of each episode. The entire population of the show is white.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Sexy stuff

There is talk of dating and relationships from both teens and adults, but nothing beyond the crush stage.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that although this series aims to teach viewers about good behavior and respecting others, its hackneyed situations and endless cheesy sound effects get in the way of anything meaningful. The futuristic elements are so poorly tacked on to the stories that they seem irrelevant. And Phil's sister is so nasty, rude, and antagonistic that it makes the show nearly unwatchable. All in all, the show is harmless but unpleasant.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

A family from the future is trapped in the suburban present in this rehash of just about every teen show you've ever seen. Although Phil (Ricky Ullman) and his family have access to various futuristic gadgets (a brain switcher, an age transformer). The teen and his friends experience the ups and downs of their age group. For example, in one episode Phil gets a crush on the popular girl at school and has to learn about being himself, and in another story, Phil's best friend Keely (Alyson Michalka) uses the aging machine to see what she'll be like at 25 and has to learn about being herself. Predictably, Phil's sister Pim (Amy Bruckner) is a cute kid who is a complete brat and mean to everyone.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Though the series attempts to impart a few life lessons, the situations are so clichhd and the settings so overly familiar that you can predict everything that's going to happen and everyone's reaction to it long before it occurs, and so the "lesson learned" impact fizzles out. And in case you weren't sure which parts are supposed to be funny, a barrage of sound effects is constantly going off during each episode, adding a cartoonish element that does nothing to enhance the viewing experience. There are far, far better ways to spend half an hour than watching this show.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about whether the lessons the show is trying to teach are derailed by Phil's sister's behavior. Can you look past her nastiness to see what the message is supposed to be? Is what she does funny or just mean? How would you deal with a sibling who acts like she does?

TV details

Cast:Alyson Michalka, Amy Bruckner, Ricky Ullman
Networks:Disney Channel, Disney XD
Genre:Comedy
Topics:Magic and fantasy, Friendship
TV rating:TV-Y7
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of Phil of the Future was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

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What parents and kids say

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Written byAnonymous May 28, 2010
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

Wait a minute...WHAT???!!!

2 STARS????!!!!! REALLY???? THIS WAS MY FAVORITE SHOW! Now it is gone and is almost never rerun. What makes it deserve a 2 stars? Just because every major character is white does not mean anything. What about Wizards of Waverly Place? Not one character is African American and no messages problems were there. The show is great. Phil Diffy is a great role model, and Keely and Phil show how a great friendship can happen, even between people from two very different places/times.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Adult Written bygoldfishee27 April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 
Educator Written bycaffinegirl85 October 7, 2011
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

yet another great show that had to be taken off the air no fair!!!

I very much loved this cute show i now have the dvd Phil of The Future Gidgets and Gazmos which gives u 4 cool eposodes its so not fair that this show had to be taken off the air i say no fair! just like other great shows like Drake And Josh Lizzie Mcguire All That why take such cool shows off the air ? i mean Phil Of The Future was such a cool show and i think it helped us all knowing anout the future yet another great show that had to be taken off the air i say no fair!
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 16 years old Written byveils July 11, 2011
AGE
8
QUALITY
 

Why Parents?

What is up with the stats? 95% say violence is an issue 95% say sexual content is an issue 95% say language is an issue 95% say there's too much drinking, drugs, or smoking 95% say they noticed product placement First of all there was never any drinking, drugs, or smoking, never. Yeah there's a little kissing and flirting but it's a family show, what do you expect? Where's the language and the violence? The gadgets are cool but the episodes are sometimes boring but season 2 is much better

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