Punk'd (2020)

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
Punk'd (2020) TV Poster Image
Reboot of classic MTV show has big pranks, tons of cursing.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

It's meant to be a joke, but sometimes the tricks are borderline humiliating. On occasion, stereotypes are intentionally used to make the prank even more outrageous.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The victims are relieved, and sometimes embarrassed, but accept that it's all in good fun. 

Violence

Pranks include actors getting hit in the face, falling, getting beat up, and crashing into things. There's some fake blood and bruises, but no one gets hurt. Victims yell, cry, argue, and get emotional during the event, and sometimes after it's over. 

Sex

Occasional innuendo. Sometimes people are shown in their underwear during moments of peril, but not in a sexual manner. 

Language

Words like "damn," "bitch," "piss," "s--t" are audible, but "f--k" is bleeped. 

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Alcohol is occasionally visible. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Punk'd, a reboot of the popular MTV series, features elaborate pranks being played on a new generation of celebrities. It has lots of cursing ("f--k" is partially bleeped), some dangerous-looking physical stunts and fake blood, and very big, sometimes very upset, reactions from prank victims. Occasionally, alcohol is visible. It's meant to be in good fun, but there are some embarrassing moments. Families can definitely use this show as an opportunity to discuss when pranks go too far and why some just aren't funny.  

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What's the story?

PUNK'D (2020) is the second reboot of the original 2003 MTV classic hidden camera show. This installment of the popular series, again created by Ashton Kutcher, features host Chance the Rapper as he sets up elaborate pranks meant to freak out his celebrity victims. As each well-organized practical joke unfolds, character actors, stuntpeople, friends, and family members work together to create situations that get more outrageous by the second. Chance watches and gives instructions from behind hidden cameras, only revealing himself when the gag reaches its climax. 

Is it any good?

This fun series features a new generation of celebrities while following the popular franchise's traditional formula. Folks like Sabrina Carpenter, Megan Thee Stallion, and Liza Koshy have some big reactions to the craziness around them, which makes the series entertaining. There are a few embarrassing moments, and on occasion the victims of the practical jokes become overwhelmed. But when it's all over, victims appreciate that it's all in good fun and appear resigned to the fact that they're now part of Punk'd history. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the planning and execution of the elaborate pranks on Punk'd. How long does it take to organize them? Do actors and others who are part of the scheme improvise? Do you ever wonder if the victims of the practical jokes really know what's going on?

  • When does a prank go from being "all in good fun" to being mean? Have any of the antics presented throughout the history of the franchise gone too far? Why?

TV details

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