Parents' Guide to

The Curse

By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Surreal black comedy is a wild ride for mature viewers.

TV Showtime Comedy 2023
The Curse TV show poster: The Siegels and Dougie are grouped together in the center of a realistic painted image; Dougie has a camera slung over one shoulder, they are pictured against a city street, and all have discomfited expressions on their faces

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The title of this show is a fine metaphor for its unique and often cringey charms: Just who's cursed and who's cursing the troubled New Mexico town in which it's set? The Siegels believe they can be a force of good for Española; they're never happier than when they're allowed to bloviate on how they can bring jobs and new wealth to the town's downtrodden citizens while respecting their Indigenous roots, supporting local artists, and advocating for environmentally neutral architecture. But as we meet Española's residents, a different picture emerges: They're bewildered by the Siegels and their plans, rightfully concerned that rising rents will push them out of their hometown, and uninterested in their assigned role as smiling background players in the Siegel's self-congratulatory reality TV house-flipping show.

Things get messier as we understand just how dysfunctional the Siegels' marriage is, how complicated Asher's relationship is with his childhood bully/adult frenemy Dougie, and how Whitney's background as the daughter of notorious local slumlords contributes to both the Siegels' ambitions and foibles. Watching that all play out against the background of a town with marginalized citizens is often scathing; though there are many sharp chuckles thanks to Safdie and Fielder's smart script, this is one show that might be more fun to pick apart after watching than to actually watch.

TV Details

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