A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Solving huge mysteries requires constant perseverance and curiosity about the world. Teamwork is important when it comes to taking apart huge problems.
Positive Role Models
Val shows curiosity and perseverance when she learns about Elena's plans and constantly challenges her. She is also very smart and determined to do right in her career. Elena and Val will eventually learn to work together, but Val already experiences teamwork with her detective partner, Anthony.
Most of main cast are actors of color. Val, Anthony, and Val's husband, Elgin, are three of the main Black characters, while Elena is a Belarus-born character played by a Brazilian-American actress. A prominent secondary character is played by a Latino actor. Other background characters include Black, Asian, Brown actors. The pilot was directed by Asian American director Justin Lin. But the series traffics in old clichés, including stereotypes like seeing Eastern Europeans as cold assassins, Saudi Arabians as powerfully rich, Black Americans as people who come from dangerous neighborhoods. While it has a ton of surface representation, older problems regarding cultural and ethnic representations still exist unchallenged. Series focuses primarily on relationships between Val and Elena and features women in powerful positions, but at least one episode doesn't pass the Bechdel Test: a majority of its scenes features the two leads in scenes with majority men, and when the two leads are in scenes together, they talk about their husbands as much as they talk about each other's merits or crimes.
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Violence & Scariness
Scenes with shooting, a missile exploding a car, killing (in self-defense), stabbing, and neck-breaking. Characters have discussions about rape, blood diamonds, blowing up diamond mines, etc.
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Swear words and phrases like "hell," "damn," "dumb son of a bitch."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Discussions about drugs (e.g., heroin).
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Endgame is a crime thriller in which a criminal mastermind challenges a detective to solve a case that has international consequences. The series features some violence, including shooting and deadly hand-to-hand combat, and characters discuss violent actions. The series is billed as one that focuses on women in atypical, powerful leadership roles -- whether or not that role is on the good side of the law.
Is It Any Good?
This is a fun but middle-of-the-road thriller that hopes to capitalize on its leads, who are both women. It's pretty standard primetime crime-thriller fare, but its twist has potential. Unlike the contentious yet paternal relationship between criminal Red and profiler Elizabeth on The Blacklist, here there are two women who have the potential to develop a sisterhood despite being on two sides of the criminal justice system. Baccarin is great as the beautiful yet mysterious mastermind Elena, who creates a twisty bank heist plot for some sort of altruistic purpose. Meanwhile, Bathe is doing well, too, but her portrayal of Val is currently a little one-note; the one time we get to see layers to her character is when she is meeting with her husband, Elgin (Elgin Turner), who is currently serving time in jail for a crime he didn't commit.
The series has potential, but hopefully it relies less on tired stereotypes in the future. Do we need another piece of media that reinforces the notion that all Eastern Europeans are trained assassins from birth? Or that all Saudi Arabians are bank magnates? Or that all Black people grow up in rough neighborhoods and escape by the skin of their teeth? But as it stands, the series could excel once a bit more connective tissue and chemistry between the two leads is established.
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.