A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The series reflects the traditional white, middle class values of the time, but it also has references to the social changes taking place as a result of the Kennedy era. It also has strong positive themes of relationships and family, as well as compassion and gratitude.
Positive Role Models
Rob and Laura have a traditional marriage and love their son. Rob often resorts to things like bribing his son in order to get a way with some of his antics. One of the comedy writers is a single woman who's a little man crazy.
Violence & Scariness
Bickering among co-workers is frequent, but any physical violence is of the comedic kind.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some extremely mild flirtations and kissing between married folk.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
People are shown with cocktails during parties. As was typical of the time, pipe, cigar, and cigarette smoking is sometimes visible. The show's cast appeared in a popular cigarette commercial.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Dick Van Dyke Show is a classic 1960s multi-Emmy Award-winning series. It features lots of comedy and musical acts that are both entertaining and family friendly. As was typical of the time, pipe, cigar, and cigarette smoking is occasionally visible. Parties often feature people with cocktails, and jokes sometimes make references to drunkenness. Because the themes revolve around work and marriage, it probably won't appeal to younger kids (although it's mild enough if it does).
Is It Any Good?
The 15-time Emmy Award-winning series, which is loosely based on Reiner's life, combines the elements of a comedy with the elements of a variety show. This creative show platform allowed for musical and vaudevillian-like comedy performances of Van Dyke, Marie, and other members of the cast throughout the five years the show was on the air.
It's definitely entertaining, but what makes The Dick Van Dyke Show historically significant is its reflection of a middle-class awareness of the Kennedy Administration-inspired social movements and trends of the time while still focusing on the traditional issues surrounding Rob and Laura's marriage and domestic life. The result is a show that has timeless appeal, which continues to play an important role in American popular culture.
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.