Samantha Who?

Common Sense Media says

So-so amnesia sitcom tackles grown-up issues.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Sam used to be mean person, and she still occasionally acts mean unintentionally -- though she's trying to be better. She might yell or berate someone or just be rude. Peripheral characters are sometimes selfish and rude, too, but their behavior is meant to highlight Sam's attempts to better herself.

Violence
Not applicable
Sex

Mild discussion of sex, including some innuendo. A character was cheating on her boyfriend. Some kissing and embracing.

Language

Occasional "damn," "bitch," and the like.

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Some drinking. One character drinks a lot, and other characters comment on this. Sam is a recovering alcoholic.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this sitcom about an amnesiac who wants to become a better person occasionally deals with serious issues, like alcoholism and sexual affairs, but tends to treat the topics lightly. Expect frequent discussion of sex, including occasional mild innuendo. Couples sometimes kiss or embrace, and characters drink and hang out in bars. One character drinks frequently, and others joke about her being an alcoholic. Rare use of swear words like "damn" and "bitch."

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Christina Applegate stars in SAMANTHA WHO?, a comedy about a young woman with amnesia who finds out she used to be a not-so-nice person. As a blank slate, Sam confronts her past and tries to become a better person, despite the glimmers of her past personality that continue to burst through. Along for the ride are Sam's henpecked boyfriend Todd (Barry Watson), her nutty parents Regina (Jean Smart) and Howard (Kevin Dunn), and her best friend, party animal Andrea (Jennifer Esposito). Looking at her friends and family from her new perspective, Sam quickly realizes that she doesn't actually like many of them. Her mother is self-centered and deceitful, and her friend plies her with drinks despite knowing that she's in recovery.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

The show's somewhat silly premise is bolstered by Applegate's knack for comedy, which she honed during her days on Married... With Children. And while Samantha Who? doesn't shake the tired sitcom format, it still provides plenty of lightweight laughs.

Grown-up issues like alcoholism and affairs, along with several instances in which Sam is downright mean to others, make the show best for older teens and adults. That said, even these serious topics are treated lightly and don't get too edgy.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about whether it's possible -- or desirable -- to completely reinvent yourself. What makes people want to change how they look, act, or think? What impact does the media have on how you perceive yourself? How about your peers? Teens: Is there something about yourself that you'd like to change? What, and why? Do you think anyone has opinions of you that aren't accurate? How can you change that? Should you?

TV details

Cast:Christina Applegate, Jean Smart, Jennifer Esposito
Network:ABC
Genre:Comedy
TV rating:TV-PG
Available on:DVD

This review of Samantha Who? was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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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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Teen, 15 years old Written byCalciano355 December 9, 2008
AGE
8
QUALITY
 

I LOVE THIS SHOW!!!

This show is hysterical! The content is very mild and innuendos will go right of the head of anyone under 12.
Kid, 11 years old January 2, 2014
AGE
8
QUALITY
 

Great, but iffy.

Samantha who is great, but it contains: Violence = Not much, really. Occasional comedic fistfights. In one scene, Samantha is hit by a car and gets amnesia. Blood is seen later on the car in a later episode. 2/10 Language- Frequent uses of h*ll & da*n. B**ch is said once. S**t is also said once. C**p is said frequently. 4/10 Sex = Lots of very mild to strong sexual innuendos about sex in general, 'apple bobbing', sexual positions, etc, etc. VERY FREQUENT. There is not a second in Samantha Who without a sexual innuendo. Lingerie & thongs are seen in Samantha's old closet. Old Samantha is very sexual. There are brief sex scenes with Todd. One episode involves Samantha trying to lose her 'virginity,' as she forgot how sex felt after the amnesia kicked in. 8/10 for sex. Drinking, Drugs & Smoking- Lots of characters get drunk, getting wasted by drugs, drug intake, drug references, smoking heroin is seen once, but briefly. 6/10 for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking. Overall Score = 20/40. If Samantha Who were a movie, it would be rated PG-13 for drug use, frequent mild sexual crude humour & language.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Kid, 10 years old March 25, 2014
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

Great show!

Samantha who is a great show that is very witty and funny. there is a few sex scenes and some strong language but there bodies are always covered with a duvet. Over all its a good show, its worth watching!!!
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

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