Parents' Guide to


By Will Wade, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Realistic look at the LAPD is gritty, violent, enthralling.

TV NBC , TNT Drama 2009
Southland Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 5 parent reviews

age 17+

Fantastic Show

Amazing show that gives a deep look into what being a cop in south LA is like. Would definitely recommend for older kids and adults.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
age 15+

Very entertaining yet a grim realistic look at the lives of police officers.

Southland is a TV-MA rated crime drama show that is more darker and realistic in nature than your average CSI show. It deals with tenacious and ambitious police officers dealing with the potential dangers within their job, and even their daily lives. The whole show has a very gritty and tense atmosphere throughout, investigating grisly and disturbing crimes such as violent acts of murder, torture, rape, abuse, drug/sex trafficking, gangs, school shootings, and kidnappings - some involving children. The violence can be quite graphic and bloody, rarely any gore - this includes acts from criminals and civilians alike - shootings, domestic violence, assault, etc. There isn't any graphic sex in this series, but heavily implied with some crude/vulgar dialogue and references. The language can range from moderate to pervasive in some episodes - beeped uses of f**k, c**k, c**t, mother**ker, and unbeeped uses of sh*t. Drug use is common - some characters smoke, drink, party and use drugs - nothing too graphic or pervasive. Violence (3/5) Language (3/5) Drugs (3/5) Intensity (4/5) Sex (2/5)

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (5 ):
Kids say (6 ):

Being a cop is a tough and thankless job, and Southland doesn't sugar-coat it. The experienced officers are cynical, often bitter, after seeing just about everything during their years on the streets, and Sherman is getting a crash course in reality right from the start. Cooper and his peers have developed a hardened exterior because it's the only way to get by on the force, and Sherman stands out for his innocence. Clearly, he'll need to shed that soft shell, and fast.

John Wells, who also brought ER to the small screen, created Southland. That series also examined the personal crises of everyday life. But while ER tipped toward the melodramatic, the crimes here are the mundane but heartbreaking stuff of the big city: sudden senseless killings, missing kids, random violence. There are no criminal masterminds, no complex plots, no exciting heists. By focusing on the incidents' everyday nature, the show makes the honest reactions of victims and their loved ones seem more dramatic -- more human -- than the most "exciting" gunfights and daring rescues on other police series. Realism, it seems, is more interesting than any fictional drama.

TV Details

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