Parents' Guide to

The Walking Dead

By Kari Croop, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Grim zombie drama is artful -- but awfully bloody.

TV AMC Drama 2010
The Walking Dead Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 129 parent reviews

age 13+

Incredible post-apocalyptic show has tons of brutal violence

The Walking Dead is a post-apocalyptic series about a group of survivors struggling to find safety under a zombie pandemic. Though the show is a must watch experience, it does include overwhelmingly brutal violence throughout it's episodes. In this detailed review, I will be breaking down all of the mature elements for seasons 1-2 and will be soon updating. Season 1: VIOLENCE: Episode 1: Days Gone Bye -------------------------------- A man shoots the zombie of a little girl through the head, splattering blood out. In a police shootout, a car flips and several people are shot with bloody wounds and injury shown. Many zombies are killed with blunt objects and guns with blood and gore shown. A small zombie with half of her body torn off with intestines visible crawls on the ground before getting shot in the head and put out of her misery with blood shown. Many zombies are sniped. Many zombies devour a horse and tear it to pieces. Quite graphic and distressing. A man shoots many zombies along with one sitting next to him. The episode contains plenty of realistic gore and blood shed, with zombies being shot with bloody detail and dismemberment along with a horse and several people. Although this episode is graphic, it doesn't compare to later episodes. -------------------------------- Episode 2: Guts -------------------------------- Several zombies are violently smashed with bats. A fight happens on a roof with minimal detail. Several people take a dead zombie from outside and take it into the building, and begin chopping it up into pieces and slashing it open to remove its guts. Then, they start sloshing their hands around the open corpse of the zombie and start wearing it's intestines, guts and limbs. This is an extremely bloody and horrific scene to watch not for people with weak stomachs. Many zombies are stabbed, shot and killed in more ways along with arrows, very bloody. This episode is much more horrific and graphic than the first. -------------------------------- Episode 3: Tell It to the Frogs -------------------------------- Just like previous episodes, zombies are stabbed, shot, arrowed, smashed and brutalized like before showing realistic gore. A mans cut off hand is found on a rooftop with blood everywhere. A man is thrown on the floor and brutally beaten in the face until he is bloody and brutalized. Compared to other episodes, this episode is fairly mild. -------------------------------- Episode 4: Vatos -------------------------------- During the invasion of a camp, a zombie bites a man in the neck and jumps onto him, a zombie bites into a girls arm, a zombie is beaten violently with a bat, tons of zombies have their limbs blasted off, a man has his muscle torn off by a zombie, a zombies head is split in two by a bat and a woman is eaten. This scene basically sums up most of the violence in the episode and is very disturbing, upsetting and brutal. -------------------------------- Episode 5: Wildfire -------------------------------- A woman drives a pickaxe into a dead mans head repeatedly causing brains to pour out and be exposed along with tons of blood to splash out. Extremely brutal. A woman puts down her own sister as a walker with blood spurt. The scene is more upsetting than graphic. Several bloodied corpses are shown. Many dead zombies have a pickaxe driven into their heads causing extremely graphic imagery. Multiple moments of zombie killing with arrows, guns etc. Very disturbing episode. -------------------------------- Episode 6: TS-19 -------------------------------- The opening scene of the episode shows soldiers murdering unarmed people in a hospital hallway causing some blood to splatter. A zombies head is chopped clean off. Some zombie's are blasted in the head. People are threatened with guns. A man attempts to rape a woman, but she claws his face and escapes. A building explodes. Overall mildest episode of the season. LANGUAGE: Some uses of sh*t, damn, hell, ass, a**hole, pr*ck, p*ssy, d*ck. SEXUAL CONTENT: A sex scene appears in episode 2 where a man removes a woman's shirt, pulls his pants down before the camera unfocused as we see them in a sexual position in the background with him thrusting. A man tries to touch a woman inappropriately but she claws him to get away. A man and woman get under covers implying sex. Nothing much more. OVERALL: Season 1 is very mild compared to later seasons including season 2, which is still milder. Although the mildest season, it is still very graphic and violent. Season 2: VIOLENCE: -------------------------------- Episode 1: What Lies Ahead -------------------------------- Zombie killing such as stabbing (screwdrivers, knives) and shooting with arrows and guns all involving strong gore and detail like earlier episodes. A man slices his arm nearly open on shrapnel and bleeds everywhere. He is okay. A man grabs a rock and smashes a zombies head in brutally with it (very gory, violent) and then proceeds to bash the others head in offscreen. 2 men cut open a zombies stomach and search through its intestines and bowels to see if there are human remains inside. They eventually dig far enough to the gut sac which they open up and find animal teeth. This scene is extremely nasty and graphic and it’s all mostly on screen in high detail. A young boy is suddenly shot through the stomach. Very shocking. -------------------------------- Episode 2: Bloodletting -------------------------------- A young boy has a gun wound and during a surgical tiled scene he wakes up and screams in agony. The bullet shrapnel are shown being removed from his stomach as he is awake. Quite bloody. Many zombies are shot in the heads, stabbed etc. but this episode doesn’t go as far as the others in the season. -------------------------------- Episode 3: Save the Last One -------------------------------- Many zombies are shot with shotguns, pistols and rifles causing their heads to spray blood and have pieces fly off as usual. A man falls from a window and hurts his ankle. A boy has a severe seizure do to a bullet wound. In a very graphic scene, a man is suddenly shot in the leg then tackled onto the floor. The man is repeatedly hit and the other has his head yanked and scratched pulling his hair out before and a gun is shot into the air as he struggles for his life until he becomes to impaired to move and zombies come and tear his face apart brutally and eat him alive. This scene is very bloody as disturbing as the man who dies is innocent and trying to help and acts as live bait. -------------------------------- Episode 4: Cherokee Rose -------------------------------- Regular infrequent zombie killing similar to previous episodes (but milder). A massive and fat zombie is pulled up a well and after he reaches the surface he is torn in half by the force of the rope and maggots spray everywhere along with intestines, blood and gore. After that, his head is brutally bludgeoned. The goriest scene of the episode and very disturbing even for season 2. -------------------------------- Episode 5: Chupacabra -------------------------------- Zombie killing including gore, and strong injury. A man falls down a hill impaling himself with an arrow and hurting himself elsewhere. As he is nearly passed out and impaired zombies come and he is forced to surprise them by ripped the arrow out of his stomach and stabbing one with it and killing the other in a brutal way as well. Overall, the episode isn’t too bloody for the show whatsoever. -------------------------------- Episode 6: Secrets -------------------------------- Plently of zombie shooting with blood and gore, disturbing corpses are discovered in a home. A zombie is brutally slashed in the head and neck with a machete over and over. Graphic and gory. -------------------------------- Episode 7: Pretty Much Dead Already -------------------------------- Several zombies are shot towards the end including a zombie of a little girl, showing the same amount of gore as earlier episodes in the season, along with other scenes of violence. -------------------------------- Episode 8: Nebraska -------------------------------- The only violence appears at the very end where a man is suddenly shot in the head (blood splatters on the wall behind) and another man is shot in the chest 3 times and finished. A little bloody, but by far a milder episode in the season despite the human violence. A pregnant woman crashed her car. -------------------------------- Episode 9: Triggerfinger -------------------------------- The episode is littered with human shootouts and violence towards the beginning, with a man being shot and falling to the ground screaming in agony for an extended period of time before dying, and others being shot at. Eventually, a boy falls on a spiked fence impaling his leg and it is ripped off of it. Very bloody scene, however it takes place in the dark. Some zombie violence including stabbing, a pregnant woman in a car crash. -------------------------------- Episode 10: 18 Miles Out -------------------------------- 2 men fight with punching in the face, throwing of objects. One of the men slam a motorcycle down on another with the shield hitting his face. This scene is also combined with zombie killing made up of mostly knives to the face. Then a car comes and rescues. A girl slits her wrists with broken glass, is suicidal. -------------------------------- Episode 11: Judge, Jury, Executioner -------------------------------- A boy is violently tortured (punched, kicked pulled around) in a cabin and says that his group raped 2 teenage girls and forced their father to watch. This is not told in detail at all. A mans stomach is ripped open by a zombie. He is alive while this happens and is suffering so the zombie is violently stabbed in the face then the man is out out of his misery. Very bloody and graphic. -------------------------------- Episode 12: Better Angels -------------------------------- A boys neck is broken off-screen but we hear a scream. A man slams his face into a tree causing his face to bleed. A man is stabbed, and supposedly killed when he comes back from the dead and is shot in the face. -------------------------------- Episode 13: Beside the Dying Fire -------------------------------- Gory zombie violence all throughout the beginning of the episode. A boy had his neck ripped out by zombies and blood sprays all over a windshield. A woman is eaten alive. Zombie violence appears frequently throughout. LANGUAGE: Use of sh*t, damn, hell, pussy and on one occasion n*gger. SEXUAL CONTENT/NUDITY: A woman removes her top to have sex with a boy and the boy disrobes before the screen cuts away. No nudity and nothing is shown. Mature adult themes like pregnancy, and condoms. A woman grabs a mans crotch and it is implied they had sex. OVERALL: This season is more mature than the first and more gory, although more slow.

This title has:

Too much violence
6 people found this helpful.
age 17+

Great show, NOT suitable for kids.

I've watched this since the beginning and love it, however I genuinely cannot understand parents who think it's suitable for kids under the age of 13. What the hell?!! Nevermind the extreme zombie gore and violence, some of the stuff the humans do to each other (looking at you Negan!) is pretty grim. Personally, I wouldn't want my kids to watch it until they're at least 15/16 yrs old. No ten year old needs to see heads bashed in or guts falling out.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much swearing
5 people found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (129 ):
Kids say (497 ):

For most viewers, this drama about human survival in a world full of zombies will be an acquired taste. That's not to say The Walking Dead is too gross to watch, or unworthy of praise for its acting and art direction. British actor Lincoln, in particular, impresses as the group's first leader, while other characters -- including the rebellious yet admirable Daryl (Reedus), fierce warrior Michonne (Danai Gurira), and the resourceful Glenn (Yeun) -- emerge as strong fan favorites. As the series progresses, viewers will be drawn into characters' personal stories and their continuing efforts to survive and wrestle with complex moral questions -- which only grow thornier in later seasons.

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