The Nanny

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
The Nanny TV Poster Image
Parents recommendPopular with kids
Blue collar meets blue blood in this funny sitcom.

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 10 reviews

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 48 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

The importance of family and being a good parent is a central theme here.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Maxwell is a hardworking, upstanding role model who puts his children's needs before anything else. Fran's caregiving style is unique, but means well and never misguides the kids. Some cast members reflect stereotypes about Jewish people.


Frequent but mild sexual banter between adults appears to go unnoticed by the TV kids, but tween and teen viewers will pick up on it. Teen and adult female characters (especially Fran) sometimes wear skimpy, tight outfits.


Exclamations like "Oh my god" are as bad as it gets.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Adults occasionally have a mixed drink, but it's rare, and there's never any underage drinking.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that much of this show's humor derives from sexual banter and playful flirtation between a father and the provocatively clad nanny of his three kids. While none of the discourse is sexually graphic (in fact the word "sex" is almost never heard), astute tween and teen viewers won't miss the suggestive comments and glances. The show also draws comedy from the kids' various woes. Adolescent issues like dating, peer pressure, and self-image are played for laughs, but the adult influence is good, and the overall message is a positive one.

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 11 and 18+-year-old Written byAnalyst June 7, 2019
Parent of a 2, 4, and 10-year-old Written byadryx2019 April 26, 2019
Teen, 13 years old Written byFiveo May 15, 2020
Teen, 16 years old Written byghtehrani December 6, 2018

A pick-me-up show if there ever was one.

I love this show, it always leaves me feeling upbeat. Fran is a hilarious character, as are all the characters. (Gracie is my personal favourite.) Niles' s... Continue reading

What's the story?

THE NANNY is a classic '90s sitcom about the unlikely pairing of a proper Englishman-turned-New Yorker and his hastily hired nanny from Flushing. Desperately seeking a caregiver for his three children, widower Maxwell Sheffield (Charles Shaughnessy) opens his door one day to find Fran Fine (Fran Drescher), who's selling cosmetics in the affluent neighborhood after being dumped by her fiancé and losing her job in a bridal shop. He hires her on the spot and the two form a quintessential odd couple: He's a successful, buttoned-down Broadway producer, and she's a dramatic single gal with an eye for flashy fashion and ticking biological clock. But bubbly, nasally Fran immediately wins the hearts of the Sheffield children -- Maggie (Nicholle Tom), Brighton (Benjamin Salisbury), and Grace (Madeline Zima). Fran is likewise adored by Niles (Daniel Davis), the Sheffields' buttinsky butler, with whom she enjoys exchanging jabs at the expense of Maxwell's fawning female associate, C.C. Babcock (Lauren Lane).

Is it any good?

Playful banter and mild sexual innuendoes are the heart of the show's humor, and little of it is cause for concern. But parents may find the constancy of both Fran's and C.C.'s blatant attempts to catch Maxwell's eye questionable subject matter for their teen or tween daughters. C.C. in particular practically throws herself into Maxwell's arms at every opportunity and looks down her high-society nose at Fran, seeing her as an unworthy adversary for the affections of an eligible bachelor.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about family dynamics and communication between kids and parents. How do families establish and maintain good communication? Who do you go to for advice? Parents also can talk about what defines a family. Who do you consider to be part of your family?

TV details

For kids who love TV about families

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