A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The general tone is one of sniggering horniness, but some will appreciate the gender switcheroo of men having to impress women to get a date. Criticism of male looks and personality can be very harsh/rude.
Positive Role Models
Some contestants are terrifically shallow; others champion concepts that are hard to disagree with, like fidelity and kindness. Contestants are diverse, but women are generally slender and conventionally attractive.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Wall-to-wall innuendo and sex jokes. Female contestants are clearly coached to leer at the male contestants and deliver scripted come-ons: "He's like a ripe piece of meat."
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No cursing, but plenty of verbal innuendo, including endless comments on male contestants' rear ends.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Take Me Out is a dating game show with wall-to-wall nudge-nudge wink-winks. Sexual innuendo is constant: "He's a ripe piece of meat, and he needs a bite taken out of him." While the show's iffy language is minimal, and there's no specific sexual conversations, the sexy banter and physical critiques create a highly charged, if lighthearted, atmosphere. Plus,Take Me Out reinforces gender stereotypes and shallowness, with all the women -- who are all conventionally attractive -- in high heels and short dresses, but all this will probably attract teens. If they must watch, Mom or Dad will want to be on hand to counter the worst of the dumb sex jokes.
Is It Any Good?
Awful, smutty, and cringe-worthy, this is exactly the kind of fare that teenagers think is hilarious but adults despise. Yet it's difficult to articulate exactly why. The women are being treated with at least a modicum of respect, and everyone onstage seems to want to be there. In addition, no one seems to be taking the idea of romance seriously; there's no creepy pretending that the contestants are seriously searching for lasting love (we're looking at you, The Bachelor), and some contestants, both male and female, are genuinely charming.
And yet, all the stupid and witless sex jokes get old, fast. "Let the hot dog see his buns!" cries Lopez about a male contestant coming down the "love lift." Even Lopez seems a little embarrassed to be delivering that line. Watching male contestants dance (usually terribly) to win female approval is pretty amusing, but when host and contestants stop dancing and talk, things go so wrong. "I like a guy like I like a sports car: beauty outside and high performance inside," says one over-rehearsed contestant, with a phony wink and leer. Teens who haven't seen this kind of winky shtick on shows from The Dating Game to Exposed will likely find it funny. Parents will just be praying they don't see their own kids on the Take Me Out stage anytime soon.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.