I just wanna start out with saying this show isn't what some people make it out to be. First, Emily is lesbian, but that shouldn't be a problem because they're not slutty or anything. They have a good relationship and Emily's friends are supportive of her. I do not agree with lesbians but that doesn't mean they should be treated any different, and besides the show doesn't revolve around this and its not focused on overly much. Another complaint many have is that Aria is dating her teacher. The age difference is a bit bad, but its not terrible, and we don't know their exact ages anyway. Also, they met before he became her teachcer. The show doesn't exactly support (or not support) them dating as well. A negative is that there is kissing and drugs and language. However, the kissing is no more than 5 seconds, and basically how they kiss is in "Monte Carlo" too, which is a very ok 9-10 year old movie. With the drugs, there really isn't that much. Adults drink but its not very noticable or focused on. Emily does smoke but there was consequences and her mom did talk to her about it. The language really isn't bad at all just the "B" word, and some other mild cussing. But i doubt if the child is 12+ they don't know about those words. And besides they probablly hear them at home anyway(altho not always). Also negative, the kids on the show do lie to their parents alot, but it doesn't completely support it. Most of the lies are because they can't explain truthfully everything because they cannot tell their parents about 'A' and the blackmail. Also, i truely think from my heart that they lie to their parents so much because they fell they can't trust their parents and don't have a very good relationship with them. So as long as you have a good relationship with your child it should be completely fine. Also, when they try to tell the truth 'A' stops them(Ex: Emily decides not to send fake invite for college scolarship(which sounds bad but not like that) even tho she knows there is a 75% chance she'll get in, but 'A' somehow manages to send it anyway.)
There is positive messages too. The 4 main girls fight through Allison's death, and support each other through everything. This show also supports body image, and how your gorgeous no matter what. Spencer is a very well brought up girl who tries super hard in school and Emily follows her dream as a swimmer. There is some violence (Ex: Hannah get ran over and Ian gets murdered, however its not bloody and the murder is completely off camera, they find him already dead and there is just some blood where he got shot, but its not gory, and Hannah getting ran over isn't completely onscreen either). This show also shows how bullying and black mail can affect ones life, but in no way supports it. Finally, I was completly upset when commonsense says "plays up sexiness of teen life" because it makes it sound way worse than it is. This show isn't about hair, makeup, nails, going to the mall, and dating.This show is about the stuggles of Alisons death and trying to learn who killed her and who 'A' is, friends supporting each other, boyfriends who support you, and struggling to make the right choices in life, which is all very important.
Overall, this show is not as bad as some make it out to be. Its a great series and kids 12+ should diffently be ok with it. No younger though.