A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The show's message is strongly anti-crime, with some empathy for everyone involved, including young suspects. That said, its content is all about violence and criminals.
Violence & Scariness
Extremely graphic images of the aftermath of violence, including pools of blood, blood-spattered evidence, and real dead bodies. Some crimes include sexual assault details.
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Occasional "ass" and bleeped "f--k."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Some crimes are drug-related.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this real-life homicide investigation docudrama features extremely graphic scenes and intense emotional moments. Bloody bodies and evidence are common sights, and suspects' reactions and behavior can be heartbreaking. Each episode features the details of several murders; some feature other violent crimes, as well, such as rape and aggravated robbery.
Is It Any Good?
Fans of crime docudramas will find The First 48 to be one of the best of its kind, with very high production values and unprecedented access to ongoing investigations. But be prepared for graphic scenes, including footage of dead bodies and blood. In the episode about the Memphis high school shooting, for example, viewers see the dead body of a 17-year-old boy slumped over in the passenger seat of a car and get a glimpse of a cell phone stained with blood.
In addition to the show's visually graphic elements, some scenes can also be very depressing -- such as arrest scenes that include family members looking on or confessions that clearly spell the end of freedom for a young person. Though The First 48's content isn't for younger viewers, certain episodes could provide reality checks for teens who are fascinated by crime dramas that glorify both violence and police work.
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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.
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Our Editors Recommend
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