A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Issues range from murder plots to exploitation of big cats in the United States. The personal and professional lives of exotic cat park and sanctuary owners are also central to the series.
Positive Role Models
Carole Baskin is the target of Joe Exotic's anger, but ultimately no one looks good in this series.
Violence & Scariness
Tension between animal rights activists and exotic cat parks is described as a "war." Murder is reason for the show, and threats to cause harm are frequent, and sometimes reference past violent events. Sexual assault is briefly discussed. Guns and hunting rifles are shown, occasionally shot. Physical and online stalking tactics are described. Tiger attacks are described, animal abuse is discussed; on occasion, dead tigers are shown. A cast member dies by suicide; video footage of a person watching the scene is shown.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Plural marriages are a central theme in some episodes. Sexual exploitation, extramarital affairs, and porn are all discussed. The G.W. park gift shop sells sex toys and underwear. Personal struggles with sexuality and acceptance are discussed. Crude language ("p---y" and "c--t") is sometimes used.
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Words like "damn," "bitch," and curses like "s--t," "f--k" are used throughout the series.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Lots of cigarette smoking. Drug use (pot, crystal meth) and addiction is referenced, and death of a sibling as a result is discussed. A prominent convicted drug dealer and exotic big cat owner is featured.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness is a docuseries about a complicated murder-for-hire plot in the world of exotic big cat ownership. Guns, angry threats, explosions, and conversations about the disposing of bodies (animal and human) are featured, but are often downplayed despite their serious consequences. There are graphic descriptions of animal abuse and attacks on humans, and limited imagery of dead animals, and big cats feeding on animal parts. Extramarital and polygamous relationships, sexual exploitation, and other mature themes are discussed. Cursing, cigarette smoking, and references to drug addiction are also present throughout.
Is It Any Good?
This sensational docuseries tells a bizarre tale of a little-known world that highlights the animosity between private big cat park owners and animal activists. A murder for hire is at its heart, but much of Tiger King is dedicated to showcasing the extremely colorful lifestyles of big cat owners, including Joe Exotic, convicted drug kingpin Mario Tabraue, and Bhagavan "Doc" Antle, the mystical cult-like owner of Myrtle Beach Safari. Stories about Carole Baskin's multiple efforts to stop them, which include cyberstalking, are also combined with details about her former life as a private big cat breeder, and lurid rumors (fueled by Joe Exotic) about the fate of her first husband. This results in a distorted story that mixes in facts with anecdotes and gossip.
Overshadowed by all of this mayhem is the reality of the criminal world of the exotic cat trade in the United States, in which private parks function as financially lucrative cub breeders and animal petting operations. It's also a world in which both private parks and rescue sanctuaries use exotic species to exploit young people and other vulnerable populations looking to make connections with animals. But what's most problematic is that the scenes revealing a darker, angrier side to Joe Exotic, who is openly and unapologetically committed to destroying Carole Baskin by any means necessary, are scattered throughout the chaotic series in a way that makes his behavior seem kooky rather than worrisome. As a result, it's easy to lose sight of the fact that Tiger King sets out to chronicle a violent story about a murder for hire, and that it takes forever to do it.
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.