Parents' Guide to

Quincy, M.E.

By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Seventies version of CSI is entertaining, if old-fashioned.

TV NBC Drama 1976
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Groundbreaking for its time, Quincy, M.E. both popularized the concept of a show built around forensic investigation (a trend still going strong today) and delved into timely social issues. But for a show over three decades old, it holds up surprisingly well, with brisk and rather intricate plots, believable and appealing actors (particularly the matchless Jack Klugman), and pretty things to look at onscreen like tropical islands and stretches of the California coast. The crime investigations seem relatably modern, too, though you'll giggle anytime anachronisms pop up onscreen, like a poster of the metric system or the humongous and clunky computer the LAPD uses to match fingerprints.

Not as modern: The heavy-handed social messages, which were particularly strident in the show's final season. In contrast, the sexism and near-constant objectification of women, particularly evident in the show's early seasons, largely disappeared by the end of the series. The first part of the series is the era of Farrah Fawcett clones cooing to 30-years-older Klugman; the last part is the era of message shows about punk rock music, alcoholism, unethical doctors, and other issues. No matter. The science is smart and interesting, the locations are pretty, Jack Klugman is fun to watch and the plots are immersive. Queue this one up to watch with the teens and Grandpa.

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