The Nanny



Blue collar meets blue blood in this funny sitcom.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

What parents need to know

Positive messages

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

Positive role models

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.

Not applicable

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.

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

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

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.

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.

Families can talk 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

Cast:Charles Shaughnessy, Daniel Davis, Fran Drescher
TV rating:TV-PG
Available on:DVD

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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; OK 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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Teen, 14 years old Written bydancegirl3697 August 28, 2011


This series is absolutely hilarious! I love it and watch it all the time. I think you should be at least 12 to start watching this. They have mild language, and some sexual contact. But this is a great series for teens and up :)
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much sex
Kid, 11 years old January 26, 2011

The Nanny

I like this show, it's funny. There are some sexual things, but that's it.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 11 years old October 4, 2011

Love it!!!!

This is a great show because its funny my whole family likes it you can tell these people work hard over all its a great family show
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models


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