Parent reviews for Star Trek: Discovery

Common Sense says

Darker, more violent Trek still has positive messages.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 36 reviews

Kids say

age 14+
Based on 10 reviews
Adult Written bydn1 January 16, 2018

Not a Family Friendly Show.

I know how important it is to recognize free will and allow people to live their lives the best they can according to their personal way of life and speech.
The previous Star Trek shows showed respect for that by not crossing lines that affected the way parents raised their children. But these days entertainment companies have no self control and seem bent on trying to instill this in their viewers. Any Scifi show being made would have to know it is going to attract the attention of younger and family viewers, especially Star Trek who has in the past been widely accepted as a family friendly category. This installment however crosses multiple lines and is not appropriate for children, unless you are purposely trying to desensitize them and let them know its okay to be out of control. The scenes can get a bit graphic in the action disturbing younger viewers, the mature theme and language content all seems in poor taste and wont be watched in my house or in the house of most of the people I know. Too bad, I have been waiting for a Star Trek to come out for so long only to have it be disqualified from our consideration. Just my 2 cents...

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Language
Parent Written byBrian F. November 30, 2017

Why do they have to add the garbage?

It is a lot more like the original series of Star Trek than TNG or Voyager. It has the action and the drama, but it's light on the philosophy and science. They have upgraded their gore factor for sure. Unlike TOS, where the punches barely connected, you get squirting blood, impalement, disintegrating bodies, etc. Violence increase of a hundred fold.

If you have traditional Christian morals, you should know that there is, as in most modern series, a central gay couple. The hero of the first series is gay, the doctor and he kiss on the final episode. They say that they love each other a couple times.

The thing that irritated me most is that there are Klingon boobs. I'm not talking about the low cut leather, or the side, or cleavage, but the top view of a fully bare breast. It is in the middle of a traumatic flashback, but it certainly wasn't necessary. It's the straw that broke this camel's back.

Bottom line for me is that if you liked TNG for the discussions of morality, or for the abstract ideas about who we are and how we get purpose in life past simple survival, this is another series in the long line after Nemesis that failed to bring those concepts to screen. I certainly won't pay to watch the series continue.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Parent Written byWes V. October 22, 2017

No longer family appropriate

Previous series have all shown great character and have wonderful lessons in them. Imagine my surprise watching this, and in the fifth episode they drop not one but two f bombs. Then to top it off the very first romantic relationship is introduced and it is two men. Had to have a talk with my son after watching that episode about language and choices. Definitely not appropriate for children.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Language
Parent Written bynuenjins October 7, 2017

Original take on 'Trek' universe lacks that old charm and wit to balance the action.

The female lead is engaging enough and movie level CGI and design move the competent storytelling along at a fair pace. This prequel to the 60s Star Trek original lacks the comedic interplay and interpersonal dynamics that made the series so endearing. The almost nonstop serious tone make for a dry tedium of what's next and get down to business rather than creating interesting relationships. It almost feels like a space soap opera written by Bond villains. It's not a 'bad' show, but it's not nearly as engaging in the same way traditional fans would hope for. The movies do a fine job tapping in to the lifeblood that makes Star Trek great but this is a rather bleak deviation that may interest some but alienate those who love the franchise for it's familiar sense of quirky relationships being as important, if not more so, than the stories themselves. This, along with the fact that these ongoing episodes are continuations and NOT self contained, the show requires the viewer to keep track of ongoing events, even amongst some borderline absurd premises. Edit:. Later on there are some highly innappropriate sexual scenes mixed with torture which are quite revealing and disturbing. These scenes should be elder teen to adult only. I bumped the age to at least 16.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written byTranceBB-003 April 5, 2019

Outstanding; early teen O.K. to watch with parental supervision

Apologies for apparent lack of paragraphs. This website strips away the spaces between paragraphs.


Good Trek, arguably, is relevant to the times it was made. Today’s world is so full of darkness, uncertainty, and difficulty. Discovery is a very different Trek compared to before. Episodes are much less about escaping from a bad, scientific situation, or moral conundrums while peacefully exploring - and are more often written around an antagonist that easily leads to blood, gore, violence. Example: Captain Lorca.

But that is why it was so refreshing in Season 2, to have a legendary, funny, full of swagger ship captain like Christopher Pike, who could not be more different than Gabriel Lorca. The show’s tone instantly changes with Pike’s arrival. To fully appreciate this, I feel that watching the show with Lorca in command is needed (only my opinion). The show is still heavy and dark in some aspects, but none of it comes from Pike, who is written faithfully as the hero we’ve all known through the years. And he’s performed so awesome by Anson Mount. Pike embodies the virtues of Starfleet, while Lorca does not (well, there’s more to that but I won’t spoil).

Because of the greater realism in this show, the tough, gray-area moral conundrums of decision making are more realistic, relatable, and thought provoking. Again, young kids won’t be able to understand or process this stuff.

I don’t think Roddenberry would have supported Discovery, as he originally envisioned Trek as a “Happy Trails through the Stars”. Again, I don’t think that particular vision of Trek reflects today’s world as much, with all the scandals, school shootings, and political corruption in the news today. For those that always wondered what it’d be like if Trek was centered around the military, in wartime (as opposed to exploration), then this show is for you. But at expense of turning Trek into a show vastly different from Roddenberry’s vision. So that is why you see/hear so many people saying that this isn’t really Trek anymore. That said, concepts of love, compassion, peace, elements of Prime Directive, are clearly in the show still, just not as common or obvious.

So, I still enjoy it. It’s clearly not retreading the same plot used ad naseum in prior shows. I can appreciate how difficult it can be to adapt earlier Treks principles/values for for a topical version emphasizing realism and war.

If Discovery is causing all the ruckus about not conforming what is really Trek, then o boy, the upcoming Tarantino Rated R Star Trek Movie will be that much more controversial! Just imagine a Starfleet ship with a foul mouthed Captain Samual L. Jackson, giving monologues about an intergalactic royale with cheese. Anyways, back to Discovery.

This show is not for young kids at all. Period. Too much violence, too much swearing for that age group.

Pre-teens may have seen/heard these violent/sexual themes from others at school, but show may be still too intense for them. It’s one thing to talk about somebody getting shot, but another to actually see it depicted realistically. And visual effects these days are so good/realistic, it’s pretty rare for a kid to yell, “that looked sooo fake!”

Early teens: it is so easy for kids these days to become desensitized to senseless violence and bloodshed, due to what’s on TV and social media these days. Parental supervision (in my case) is needed to help my daughter understand consequence and responsibility, especially in these days of desensitization and sensory overload.

Obscenities:
My teen daughter by now has heard obscenities, all of them, by now. I can’t shield her from those words at school now; what I can do however is to get her to understand why those words are obscenities. It’s unfortunate that peer pressure at school causes kids to swear in order to be cool. But it’s our jobs as parents to teach them right from wrong, while inspiring them to be the best they can become. In the face of all this social media.

LGBT:
Depiction of a loving gay couple (the mycologist and his physician husband) - in today’s world I’d be doing her and society a big disservice if I taught her to not tolerate or to hate homosexuals. She’s exposed to even more of LGBT stuff at school compared to what’s on Discovery. Despite the ire of some of my fellow church members, the best I can do for my daughter is to emphasize acceptance, tolerance, and love for all.

Violence/murder/rape - I have a big issue with these, much more so than sex itself. However she is now old enough to begin having discussions with me on those issues: violence, murder, death. And most of all, consequence and responsibility. Real vs. make-believe. As for gore, she’ll look at me strange when there’s a gory scene that makes daddy laugh out loud - usually it’s because the gore is somehow inconsistent with how things work in reality (I’m a physician). It gives me an opportunity to teach her anatomy, physiology, ER trauma, etc. to help her distinguish the real from Hollywood special effects. Things become less scary (if she is scared) when I explain/show how these effects are done, and all the safety precautions taken to keep the actor/actress safe. Maybe this ruins the shock-value of depicted violence for her, and/or suspension of disbelief, but I’d rather have that than a desensitization to true, real world violence. That said this happens much less with Star Trek Discovery than other shows. Although violence is “gratuitous” for a Trek show, it’s much less than many other things out there that’s she’s still a little young too watch (e.g. Quentin Tarantino movie).

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Violence & scariness
Language
Parent of a 13 and 13-year-old Written byPhil G. October 16, 2017

F Word Used In First Star Trek Episode

We've just finished watching the latest episode of the family space drama Star Trek Discovery. My kids hadn't seen any of the previous versions except the odd film.

Imagine our horror when one of the characters said: “You guys, this is so f**ing cool,” followed by another response from another character who said “No, cadet. It is f**king cool.”

I'm no prude and I'm sure my kids hear it at school but I really don't want to sit down in the evening to watch a 'family' drama only to hear this language.

We will not be watching it again.

This title contains:

Language
Adult Written byDonna B. September 26, 2017

Pilot was tv-14, subsequent episodes are TV-MA!

This is not a show for children. TV-MA equates to an NC 17 or R rating at the movie theater. It's a shame because when STEM programs are so sought after for our boys and girls, that a franchaise that could inspire,has instead chosen to pander to the lowest common denominator. Not the kind of math I'd like my child to learn. We won't be watching.
Parent of a 5, 10, 12, 16, 18+, and 18+-year-old Written bySage G November 13, 2017

Great for single adults

If you can't watch Star Trek with your family, then what's the point? The mid season finale featured a flashback to a human/klingon sex scene. Sure, the female's breasts were covered by prosthetic nipples, but it shows a sever lack of judgement to have included the scene in the first place. I'm done.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Language
Adult Written byvinainor October 8, 2018

Gore, violence, and profanity not appropriate for kids

I don't have the usual American hang up with sex and nudity, especially given that the empirical evidence suggest that such things don't adversely affect kids' behaviors. However, I do worry about violence, gore, and profanity, especially given the empirical evidence that such things do influence kids' behaviors. There was an episode where the f-bomb is dropped twice. Then there are gory scenes and/or violence in at least every other episode. For that reason, I don't want me kid to watch it until he is at least old enough to not be too influenced by the violence and gore.
Adult Written byJoeredhat July 20, 2019

Very good show, not for younger kids, good discussion starters

This show is well made, well acted, and well written. I’ve been watching ST since my early teens and have watched all the series, including Enterprise — TOS and TNG multiple times. I find Discovery closer to TOS/DS9 in that it has some dark elements and characters. What’s different about Discovery is all the bad guys don’t disappear in 55 minutes. Storylines aren’t usually episodic which adds to the story tension. If you believe sitcom style Trek is the only way to Trek, you’re going to hate Discovery.

I watch the series with a viewing group of 8 adults ages 40-60 and sometimes an older teenager or two. We all really like the show and appreciate the throwbacks and nods to TOS — Harry Mudd! yes! Alternate Universe — yes! Aliens — yes! Time loops — yes! Sketchy propulsion system with iffy science — yes! We especially love Tilly and her comic relief! About episode 5 the series changes to be more Trekky, more sci-fi. We loved the switch from gotcha movie stuff, which was still good, to classic Trek themes. We are waiting for the transporter to take over the ship....

Is this appropriate for kids? No. There is a rape scene in episode 9 that is disturbing and aside from the very rare profanity and occasional unnecessary alien dying gore, that’s what gives the show its MA rating. I had watched the series before inviting the group over to watch it with us, and Ill be honest: the idea of watching a rape was not exactly my idea of a way to bond with older Church friends. We skipped episode 9 and just read a summary. Turned out they watched it on their own, but it wasn’t really an episode made for group viewing.

If I had older teens, I think I’d not shy away from watching the rape scene. In today’s metoo era, parents can take the opportunity to talk with their children about rape, trauma, and the fact that yes, males can also be raped. You can talk about abuse of authority, how to support a friend who is suffering rape trauma (tell or don’t? When do you change your mind?) and a number of other things. Difficult topics? Sure. Parents need to be having them instead of avoiding them as you can see most of the reviewers here are.

So yeah, it’s not for kids to be turned loose on alone, so for that reason I gave it a 16+ rating. But if you are watching this as a family and are looking to or have established a habit of talking about difficult subjects such as sexual assault, I’d be okay watching it with younger teens. Long time fans will appreciate Discovery even more than others, but everyone can appreciate the space yarn and humor and morality issues covered in the series (I’m thinking specifically of orders from SF Command, needs of the many on Paxor, prime directive, and more).

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Adult Written byConcernedDad19 April 15, 2019

How much depravity can you handle? Don't bother.

Save yourself the time. Of course, they try to hook you before introducing the gay characters. I think that's the 4th episode. Go with your gut and shut it off.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Language
Parent of a 12-year-old Written byjhart05 April 6, 2019

Don't waste your time

This is definitely not a show for families. At least not the one episode where they show two actors having sex and exposed breasts. Besides that, it's just not very well written. Just a terrible show all around. Sure it looks pretty, but the CGI just can't make up for how bad the writing is for this show. I mean Sonar in Space?!?!?! If you don't know why that's wrong, go open up a Science text book. I could go on and on.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Language
Adult Written by2Tim3 June 16, 2020

This ship has a big Rainbow Bumper sticker

Depravity abounds. Any moral messages are outweighed by the abundance of immorality. It's not something that you want to watch with your kids. Disgusting. I couldn't rate with negative stars. They've taken a show that I loved as a kid and made it a pulpit for depravity.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Language
Adult Written bybelacyrf May 28, 2020

Great Show - Heavily disappointed in the absolutely unnecessary trash scenes

I was never a Star Trek fan but my parents liked it, and we'd watch it every now and then as a family. I was a fan of the star trek movies though. It is very hard these days to find family-friendly entertainment and I figured Star Trek would be a great way for us to have something to watch together.

So sad that CBS / Star Trek now is no different than all of the other "shock media" types throwing in completely unnecessary nudity and sexual scenes that really have ZERO pertinence to the story line. The story wouldn't lose one iota of depth without these stupid scenes.

I will probably no longer watch this series since I can't watch it with my kids. Such a shame really.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written byrlmartin62 April 29, 2020

It's a R rated Soap Opera in space.

It's constant over done drama. It's annoying. If you thought Kirk could be dramatic, you will now find him quite passive. There are virtually no light moments or laughter like with a zinger from McCoy or Spock. The main character cries more often than a drama queen raised on Betazed than an intellectual raised on Vulcan. Before every command is carried out there has to be drama and each person must be emotionally affirmed before the step is taken, even if a few seconds are left to live! Get me a bucket.

Yes, I liked the political mini themes of the original Star Trek, like the first interracial kiss. But this show is obviously produced by gays to show the absolutely normalcy & power of the gay life, with the show being a slave to that theme, versus it being just an accepted part of a future society.

And there is simply unnecessary cursing, rape, gore, etc., leaving very little for the imagination. It's not for kids AT ALL.

I suppose the thing that disappoints me the most is, ironically, how unrealistic it is. Yes, I said that. If you thought Spock coming back from the dead through Genesis was on the edge then this shows goes tumbling over the cliff with gobbledlygook sci-fi-too-complicated babble to bring back the gay doctor. If something is said to be final on this show, it only means it's coming back. The captain is dead!! No, she's not. She's coming back from an alternate universe. The star is in prison for life and forever stripped from Star Fleet! Wrong, she's back with full freedom and reinstated as the hero commander. The gay doctor is dead forever! No, he's coming back somehow. The gay relationship is over and is irrecoverable! Of course, not. They're fully reunited in indivisible union by the end of the season.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Language
Adult Written bytheLaneNest January 30, 2020

Love the modernized "Trek" show.

Our family (w/two teenage boys) is currently binge watching and we love it (about to finish first season and will start the second). Yes, there is more violence than the original shows. But in our opinion, it's not overdone. Yes, there is a gay couple and to be honest, could of lived without the one shot of them kissing! But it's a pretty minor part of the show. Graphics and special effects are great! Each show is like a mini movie! Hope this series continues because we love it.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Adult Written byLaylo1 January 28, 2020

It's not star trek

The wrong things are highlighted. The implication is directed toward the ideas they find important. If this is even what people think star trek is it makes Star Trek look so bad. THIS IS NOT STAR TREK. I'll let my kids watch any other star trek but not this one. It's revolting. They changed too much and like i said directs its attention to unimportant details and things not star trek related. I'm just disgusted. Period.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Adult Written byZohland January 27, 2020

Can't belive the 14+ rating this show was given on this site.

In the 5th episode a man is shown being tortured and raped by his female captor, showing her naked. The review here says the "relationship is based on an uneven power dynamic and is not consensual." You can try to use larger words to express the content, but torture and rape is what happens.

I'm not mashing that "too much sex" button. No it's too much violence. Rape and sex are not the same thing.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Adult Written byStu G. October 24, 2019

Not a family show

Politicized Star Trek

This title contains:

Language
Adult Written byNojEsco October 8, 2019

Nothing but constant anger and resentment, without any glimmers of hope or morality

Star Trek Discovery started off okay enough as a darker themed alternative to classic Star Trek, in a similar manner to the darker moments of, say, First Contact (which was brillant). However, by Episode 3, and pretty much consistently from there, the series is pretty much an exercise to see how much you are able to tolerate of the adventures of an arrogant and horrendously unlikable main protagonist. I could find more enjoyment from this show if it was aware of how terrible of a person the main character is, but the show instead insists that we stand in awe of her. The rest of the characters are almost fully pushed aside, and while most of them aren't terribly likeable either, some are more approachable; Pike is pretty okay (if vastly different than his character in the past), and Tilly acts as the most human character. And this is not helped by the fact that the stories center around specific twists and turns that outright contradict previous episodes, making the storytelling of the series sloppy-at-best as well. Strongly do not recommend having Kids watch the show either, as it's incredibly dark, violent and profanity-heavy, but all for no real reason other than to be edgy in a way that an angry 11-year old might consider cool.

This title contains:

Violence & scariness
Language

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