The Amazing Race TV Poster Image

The Amazing Race



Stressful global race features tense moments, teamwork.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Teamwork is the only way to win this race. Partners who work well together, especially under duress, will succeed, while those that take out their frustrations on each other will quickly fall behind.

Positive role models

Some pairs model excellent partnership, while others are extremely critical of each other, bickering and putting each other down.


Some petty behavior. Some challenges involve intense mental, physical struggles; safety gear used. 


Innuendo, flirting sometimes used during competition. Some racy modeling photos, references to wanting sex.


"Hell," "crap"; rare bleeped curses.


Prizes often sponsored by companies such as Logos from, for example, Nike, North Face, Under Armour visible. Social media stars' sites sometimes shown.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Some drug and alcohol references.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that The Amazing Race is a fast-paced reality competition that features positive and negative consequences of competition. There's some mild language ("crap," "hell," "damn"; very occasional bleeped vocabulary), some petty behavior between (and among) teams, and references to drinking and drugs. Competitors sometimes flirt to get ahead; there's occasional racy modeling photos and references to wanting sex. Show sponsors such as and competitors' social media sites are sometimes featured, and labels for travel gear such as Under Armour, Nike, and North Face are sometimes visible. The contestants don't have phones, but viewers are invited to keep up with them on Twitter and other social media platforms.

What's the story?

From producer Jerry Bruckheimer, the wildly popular series THE AMAZING RACE combines the thrill of reality competition with the excitement of travel. Eleven teams of two, which consist of friends, married couples, siblings, parent-child teams, and even social media stars, dash all over the globe in hopes of winning a major cash prize. Hosted and narrated by Phil Keoghan, each episode features each team using their smarts, wits, and various modes of local transportation to help them get to from one far-off destination after another and remain ahead of their competition. Once there, they perform tasks of physical and mental skill to get clues and information that will get them to the next location. During certain legs of the journey, the last teams to arrive at checkpoints are eliminated. From the urban streets of Mexico City to the deserts of Dubai, the contestants do what they can to win while experiencing the wonder and adventure of international travel.

Is it any good?


The fun, fast-paced series allows viewers to see the world through the eyes of the race, which allows participants and viewers to learn more about different cultures and local customs in places that aren't always well-known vacation destinations. But, like most reality competitions, it has a fair share of petty behavior, thanks to the stresses of the many unusual and sometimes-difficult circumstances the contestants find themselves in. Adding to the tension are the occasional ethical questions raised about the teams helping (or not helping) one another.

The way the individual pairs, who are from all walks of life, support each other throughout the race ranges from heartwarming to frustrating, especially when they begin to take out their stress on each other. Meanwhile, some cast members aren't always respectful of the international communities or their traditional customs. However, these moments are usually quick and usually overshadowed by the excitement of the journey. Overall, it's an entertaining show that offers an amazing look at the world around us and adventures that most people only dream about.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the participants' behavior. Does a competitor have a moral obligation to help another struggling team, or is it OK to leave them floundering? Who in this competition seems to be balancing a healthy competitive spirit with good sportsmanship?

  • What are some of the things you should and shouldn't do when traveling in a different country? Should you expect people to understand you or your needs while you're there? Is it ever appropriate to make fun of people's language(s) or customs, even if they're very different from your own?

  • Would you like to join The Amazing Race? Do you think you would do well in these stressful situations? Where would you like to go? Is there anywhere in the world you'd be more hesitant to race through? Why?

TV details

Premiere date:September 5, 2001
Cast:Phil Keoghan
Networks:CBS, Travel Channel
Genre:Reality TV
Character strengths:Courage, Teamwork
TV rating:TV-PG
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of The Amazing Race 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.


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Great handpicked alternatives

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Adult Written bymmazog April 9, 2008

Great Show - but tricky for child appropriateness

For a reality show, probably one of the least objectionable for child content. Some usually minor language, minimal physical violence, and minimal sexual content. The worst part is the verbal abuse between members of the teams or between the actual teams. Some contestents are very verbally abusive. Also of note, with each season, the verbal abuse / language / sexual content / product placement seems to get a little worse or more graphic due to casting or editing. For kid appropriateness, this is hit and miss .... some episodes are very clean, while others are a little more concerning.
Teen, 13 years old Written bymngirl June 29, 2011

Amazing Race is Awesome!

Awesome TV show! I love it! Some language but I say its for anyone from mature 6-year-olds-100-year-olds. It's really good and fun to watch! I'm going on it with my friend when we turn 21 and we are going to WIN!
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much swearing
Parent of a 9 and 11 year old Written byqtnn April 3, 2011

Interesting competition with appropriate lessons

Best reality series aimed at adults. Competition is challenging, interesting, with good locations. Very little soap opera and personal drama/tantrums *usually* have appropriate consequences.
What other families should know
Too much consumerism
Great messages


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?