Rita Rocks

 
Mom's midlife woes will tickle adults.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Much of the show's humor is rooted in the persistence of traditional gender roles that make Rita the family's primary caregiver, cook, cleaning person, and chauffeur -- all at the expense of her own freedom. But the central family is strong, with loving, caring parents. Not tons of diversity, though one main character is African American.

Violence
Not applicable
Sex

Multiple innuendoes per episode, including many between teens. Suggestive comments include a teen calling his girlfriend "hottie." A girl puts a nude picture of herself on her boyfriend's cell phone. Occasional use of anatomical terms like "vagina."

Language

Sporadic use of "hell" and "ass."

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Adults are occasionally shown drinking beer.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that although there's some sexual innuendo (dialogue, kissing, a man touches a woman's butt, etc.) among this sitcom's adult and teen characters, little of it is likely to surprise teens. There's also some sporadic language (mostly "hell" and "ass") and adult drinking, but it's on the mild side, too. All of that said, much of the show's content -- which is rooted in a woman's middle-age woes -- will be lost on teens who can't relate to her circumstances. On a positive note, the show centers on a strong family headed by a loving couple who strive to be good parents.

What's the story?

In RITA ROCKS, a disenchanted middle-aged mom tries to reconnect with her own youth by starting a garage band. Happily married for 20 years to her college sweetheart, Jay (Richard Ruccolo), Rita (Nicole Sullivan) is a hardworking mother of two girls who's mastered the fine parental arts of raising a defiant teenager and juggling the demands of a busy 9-year-old. But when she's passed over for a promotion at her lackluster job, Rita gets nostalgic for the dynamic dreamer she was in her younger days. Encouraged by her nosy mail carrier, Patty (Tisha Campbell-Martin), she dusts off her old guitar, determined to recapture some of that fire.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Rita Rocks' subject matter certainly isn't groundbreaking, but it's still a highly enjoyable comedy about the implications of being a responsible adult. Backed by a strong cast, Sullivan shines as the long-suffering Rita in the throes of a full-fledged identity crisis. Women who can empathize with Rita's emotions and frustration over being their family's underappreciated work horse will find a hero in her -- not to mention get plenty of chuckles over relatable woes like disciplining a difficult teenager, maintaining romance with a husband, and carving out precious personal time.

Rita Rocks has some drinking, salty language ("hell" and "ass," for example), and sexual innuendo (much of which has to do with a teen couple's physical attraction to each other), but none of it is likely to be new to teens. That said, much of the show's humor is likely to be lost on teens, since they can't relate to the midlife troubles that fuel the series' laughs.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about responsibility. What impression does this series give about how family responsibility is divided? Do any of the family's roles deviate from stereotypical gender roles? How relatable do you find these characters? How does their family life compare to yours? How is Rita similar to and different from other sitcom moms? Also, what responsibility do you have in your family? What are your goals for the future? How does family factor into those goals?

TV details

Cast:Nicole Sullivan, Richard Ruccolo, Tisha Campbell
Network:Lifetime Television
Genre:Comedy
TV rating:NR
Available on:DVD

This review of Rita Rocks was written by

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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; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Educator and Parent of a 22 and 25 year old Written byrodney1954 July 22, 2009
age 17+
 

good light hearted show

love it
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 11 years old July 30, 2009
age 8+
 

Cool

I thought it was a good series.It's a PG series so if your child wants to watch it just if you not sure watch it with them.
Teen, 14 years old Written bygenericscreenname1 October 7, 2009
age 12+
 
Lack originality Badly

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