The Monkees

Common Sense Media says

Goofy '60s Beatles clones offer kids worry-free laughs.





What parents need to know

Educational value
Not applicable
Positive messages

The show's main message is the value of friendship (and music). That said, the situations aren't particularly realistic, and there aren't too many consequences for irresponsible behavior.

Positive role models

The guys are lighthearted and always mean well, even when they get into jams. They're not exactly models of responsibility, but it's clear that their sticky situations are all meant to be funny.

Violence & scariness

Slapstick pratfalls only -- goofy chase scenes, exaggerated falls, and collisions, none of which result in lasting injury. Guns and other weapons are used as props, but they aren't used to act out violence.

Sexy stuff

Some flirting and kissing, as well as silly sexual innuendo with women in the objectified role -- but these instances are brief and uncommon.

Not applicable

The show became a promotional avenue for the band (which was created just for the show in the first place).

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the corny humor and silly situations in this classic 1960s sitcom will probably be lost on tweens and tweens more accustomed to the relative complexity of modern-day shows. There's little reality to this series, but it serves its purpose as simple, mild entertainment. Content-wise, there's nothing iffy beyond a few kisses and innuendo and the use of guns and other weapons as props (but they're never used to inflict actual harm), so if you can persuade your tweens and teens to watch with you, there's no reason to worry.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Capitalizing on Beatlemania, the 1960s sitcom THE MONKEES followed a group of four hip, floppy-haired young guys in an up-and-coming band as they played music, hung out on the beach, and goofed around. In each episode, band members Davy Jones, Micky Dolenz, Mike Nesmith, and Peter Tork fill their idle hours with ridiculous antics and hopeless misadventures, all of which are over-the-top but, predictably, solvable within the show's 30-minute timeframe. Each episode also includes music from the band, which -- despite being assembled just for the show -- managed a handful of folksy pop-rock hits like "Daydream Believer" and "Pleasant Valley Sunday" during its heyday. Eventually, the fictional band became a real touring and album-recording group, cementing their status as Beatles doppelgangers (or, according to some, inauthentic knock-offs) -- and their appeal to the '60s youth culture demographic.

Is it any good?


Make no mistake: This show sets out to be corny, and if there are any doubts about its intention, the colorful, goofy costumes and quick-change comedy scenes soon put them to rest. The Monkees excel at, well, monkeying around, blending physical comedy with shtick in a way that's strangely endearing to viewers who don't mind the show's dated feel or the fact that it's in no way related to reality.

It may be a hard sell to get your tweens or teens to tune in, but if they do, rest assured that there's no content to worry about. Brief kisses, some mild flirting/innuendo, and the use of weapons strictly as props are the worst of it. And who knows? Maybe you and your kids will find common ground in some of the band's hits that can still be heard today.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the fact that the band didn't exist before the TV show. Does that make the guys seem less like real musicians? What do you think the motivations were for creating both the band and the show? Are there any parallels in today's TV/media world?

  • Are you more inclined to buy a band's music if you see them on TV or watch a movie that stars your favorite music personality? Why or why not?

  • How does the modern-day music industry compare to that of years ago? What similarities exist between The Monkees and current bands like the Jonas Brothers? How have the obstacles they face to success changed over the years? Do you think one is more deserving of fame than the other? Why?

  • Compare and contrast The Monkees and The Beatles. What were parents' experiences with the two bands? How are they similar and different?

TV details

Cast:Davy Jones, Michael Nesmith, Micky Dolenz, Peter Tork
Topics:Adventures, Friendship, Music and sing-along
TV rating:TV-G
Available on:DVD

This review of The Monkees was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Kid, 12 years old May 14, 2011

Jolly Good Show, Mate!

I loved watching this when I was 6 years old. Its good, clean comedy.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 16 years old Written bymonkeegirl April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
Written byAnonymous December 21, 2010
I love this show it is funny and really satisfying
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models


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