The Divide

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
The Divide TV Poster Image
Death penalty drama is mature and violent.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

Addresses mature themes relating to crimes, capital punishment, legal misconduct, etc. Ethical behavior and other issues are also discussed. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Some want to help the wrongly accused, but their behavior isn't always ethical.

Violence

Rape, murder, and other violent acts discussed. Stabbings are visible, as are bloody images of crime scene photos. The death penalty is a theme; a man is shown being put to death. Gang activity is also discussed. Sex crimes are also a theme. 

Sex

Some sexual innuendo and crude references, as well occasional scenes of men stroking women's covered breasts or women showing off their underwear for professional gains. 

Language

Words like "ass," "crap," "piss," "t-ts";  "s--t" are occasionally audible. 

Consumerism

Apple brand technology prominently visible. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Drinking (wine, hard alcohol) and cigarette smoking is visible. Discussions of drugs and drug addiction discussed. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Divide is a mature TV drama that centers around the criminal justice system, murder, and capital punishment. Violent acts (like stabbings and legalized executions) are clearly shown, as are bloody crime scene photographs. It contains some sexual innuendo, crude references, and images of women being fondled or showing their underwear. The language is a little rough at times, too. Drinking and smoking is visible, and discussions of drugs and drug-related behavior are discussed. It's well-written, but intended for mature viewers.

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What's the story?

WEtv's first scripted series, THE DIVIDE is a dramatic series starring Marin Ireland as Christine Rosa, a third-year law student and Innocence Initiative caseworker whose own personal history drives her passion to ensure that convicted murderers are actually guilty. When Rosa takes on the case of a death row inmate slated for imminent execution, the staff at the Innocence Initiative, headed up by Clark Rylance (Paul Schneider), work hard to prove a flaw in his case while keeping her zealousness in check. But their efforts create problems for Philadelphia District Attorney Adam page (Damn Gupton), his wife, Billie (Nia Long), and his father, Police Commissioner Isaiah Page (Clarke Peters). As both sides do what they have to do to ensure what they believe should be done, new facts are uncovered about the case, including the conviction of lifer Terry Kucik (Joe Anderson). The impact of the case is far-reaching, and shows how truth and ethics aren't always priorities when navigating the criminal justice system.

Is it any good?

Written by the creators of The Walking Dead, the thoughtful series highlights how the pursuit of justice becomes a casualty when members of the criminal justice system are divided by politics, race, and personal and professional ambitions. It also highlights some of the loopholes in the system that allow for mistakes to be made, and misconduct to take place. 

There are some predictable moments, but the ongoing development of the story with each episode offers enough plot twists to keep it interesting. The cast of flawed characters also adds some authenticity to the show. It certainly isn't lighthearted fare, but folks who like good crime and legal-themed dramas will appreciate what they find here. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about capital punishment. Why is this such a controversial issue in America? Are shows like this one meant to raise issues about the death penalty, or do they simply use the subject to create good entertainment?

  • Is it ever appropriate to show violent content on TV, even if it relates to the show's themes? Why or why not? What kind of impact does media violence have on viewers?

TV details

For kids who love drama

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