A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Focuses on the perceived threat of bioterrorism immediately after 9/11, and the investigation into it. The September 11 attacks, and the panic that existed in the country at that time, is a theme.
Positive Role Models
Agents Ryder and Toretti are committed to figuring out what is happening, and who poses a threat.
The story revolves around an Asian American lead character. There are a several Black cast members, and some who appear to be (but are not necessarily identified as being from) various racial/ethnic communities.
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Violence & Scariness
Bioterrorism is a major theme, as are the 9/11 attacks. It also contains images of sick people, corpses, and bloody cadavers being dissected and having organs removed. Some people are shown with burns and other effects of poison.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A troubled romantic relationship is revealed among some cast members.
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Words like "hell" are audible.
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Products & Purchases
Locations like 30 Rock and public figures like Tom Brokaw and Rudy Giuliani are part of the story.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Cigarette smoking is visible. A secondary character is a drug addict. People are told to take ciprofloxacin to treat the symptoms related to anthrax exposure.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Hot Zone: Anthrax, an installment of the The Hot Zone franchise, is a series about the investigation into the anthrax bioterrorism threat in the U.S. following September 11, 2001. There's some occasional strong language. People who are ill, as well as cadavers, are visible; one episode features a gruesome postmortem procedure. It also features reenactments of events that occurred on 9/11, as well as archive footage of events, all of which may be triggering to some viewers.
Is It Any Good?
The formulaic spin-off of The Hot Zone series offers a dramatic interpretation of what happened behind the scenes of Operation "Amerithrax," which sought to investigate, and to contain, a potential bioterrorist attack a few weeks after 9/11. But much like the real events that transpired in 2001, the anthrax threat here feels vague, and it fails to generate a sense of fear and suspense as the story unfolds. Meanwhile, despite attempts to humanize what was a complicated investigation that included multiple players and government agencies, there's little dimension to the fictional, generic FBI operatives outside of their post-9/11 PTSD-related flashbacks. But Tony Goldwyn's portrayal of Bruce Ivins and his growing paranoia is believable, which sets a solid foundation for what happens later. Some folks may want to tune in for Goldwyn's performance, but overall, The Hot Zone: Anthrax is a lackluster narrative that falls flat.
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.