A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this relationship-oriented sitcom includes discussions about sex (including one-night stands) and paints a somewhat confusing picture of married life. Lots of humor revolves around stereotypical male-female behavior, homosexuality, and other issues. The bachelor character has frequent liaisons, and viewers see him in bed with different women in sanitized sexual scenarios.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
RULES OF ENGAGEMENT feature two couples and their single friend dealing with the various stages of dating, commitment, and marriage. While Adam Rhodes and Jennifer Morgan (Oliver Hudson and Bianca Kajlich) begin their lives as a newly engaged couple, Jeff and Audrey Bingham (Patrick Warburton and Megyn Price) muddle through their long-time marriage. Meanwhile, single friend Russell Dunbar (David Spade) works his way through serial dating and a string of one-night stands. The group is later joined by Dunbar’s assistant Timmy (Adhir Kalyhan), a single-but refined young man who attempts to serve as his boss’ moral guide.
Is it any good?
This traditional-style sitcom pokes fun at relationships of all kinds, and relies on lots of gender stereotypes for laughs. But some of these lighthearted conversations also highlight some of the issues that surface when in a relationship, including communication, trust, and parenthood.
Granted, it contains some frank talk about sex, and Spade’s sharp humor is occasionally borderline offensive. But the show is also very well written, and contains lots of humorous moments, too. It isn’t for kids, but older teens and adults looking for a good laugh may actually find one here.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about romantic relationships. What are some stereotypes about men and women in relationships? Homosexual ones? Have you seen these stereotypes play out in your own life?
Have you heard jokes about how women or men act in relationships? How do you respond to those kinds of jokes? What messages do parents want kids to hear about the pros and cons of intimate relationships?