A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
It's a murder mystery, but one that includes themes like dysfunctional relationships, coping with grief, and bullying.
Positive Role Models
Raquel is extremely insecure, while Viruca is extremely confident. A teacher has an inappropriate relationship with a student. Students are shown bullying a teacher both in and outside of the classroom. It's a Spanish cast, but some are ethnically diverse and speak Galician and Spanish.
Violence & Scariness
A mysterious death is central to the series, and suicide and the death of parents are discussed. There are scenes of people yelling and arguing, teens waving guns and bullying teachers. Vandalism is shown, and death threats are made.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
There is strong sexual content (including simulated sex scenes and nudity), and an inappropriate relationship between a teacher and a high school student.
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Spanish language curses ("j-der," "p-ta," "c-ño," etc.) are frequently used.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Wine and hard liquor is consumed, and cocaine use is suspected and discussed. Cigarette smoking is also visible.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Mess You Leave Behind is a limited Spanish whodunit murder mystery series (with English subtitles) that contains strong sexual content (including simulated sex scenes and nudity), and an inappropriate relationship between a teacher and a high school student. There's lots of cursing (spoken in Spanish, with the English subtitles), some yelling and arguing, bullying behavior (towards a teacher), and death threats. Guns are also seen. Drinking and smoking is visible, and and cocaine use is referenced.
Is It Any Good?
This engaging mystery (which is subtitled in English) takes viewers on a deliberate, slow-paced journey that smoothly reveals both Viruca's and Raquel's stories in their own specific timelines. The narrative highlights the stark differences between them, and the way they are connected. There's plenty of dramatic irony, thanks to the audiences knowing more about Viruca's lived experiences than Raquel or anyone else in the cast.
It's entertaining, but some of the students' behavior, which is mostly designed to highlight Raquel's personal insecurities, is a little tough to negotiate. Meanwhile, folks may find some of Raquel's dream sequences, which sometimes appear as flashbacks, a little confusing, given the constant back-and forth between the two timelines. Nonetheless, The Mess You Leave Behind is still a compelling contemporary whodunit that will keep viewers wondering who is responsible for the victim's death until the end.
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.