A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this reality series -- which follows two women as they rebuild their lives after leaving their hip-hop celebrity partners -- includes some salty language (“hell," “damn”) and bleeped curse words, as well as sexual innuendo, some drinking, and references to violence. The show touches on heavy themes like imprisonment, drug addiction, and poverty but ultimately has positive messages about family, friendship, good parenting, and the importance of women empowering themselves.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
TINY & TOYA follows friends Tameka “Tiny” Cottle and Antonia “Toya” Carter as they attempt to remake themselves into independent, self-sustaining women. The duo -- each best known for her involvement with a high-profile hip-hop star (Tiny was dating now-jailed rapper T.I.; Toya has a daughter by singer L’il Wayne) -- have moved into a house in Atlanta in order to support each other. Each woman struggles with her own personal challenges, which range from coping with a drug-addicted mother to the search for romance and companionship. They're also taking the opportunity to reexamine their lives, build new goals, and create a better future for themselves and their kids.
Is it any good?
This somewhat voyeuristic series is intended to challenge the tabloid gossip that's surrounded its stars for years -- and to give viewers a chance to see both women outside of the large shadows cast by their former celebrity partners. Unfortunately, there's so much discussion about the hip-hop industry (and their roles in it) that it's hard to look beyond it. Adding to this is the women's rather luxurious lifestyle (courtesty of Tiny’s former singing career and Toya’s high-profile divorce).
That said, there's also something very poignant and genuine about the women's personal struggles. Their stories offer a reality check to anyone who thinks that it's easy to live in the limelight -- or that money is the solution to all problems. And, unlike many reality shows, this one offers the chance to watch two women empower themselves ... rather than allowing themselves to be objectified by men.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about Tiny and Toya's choice to use a reality show to fight tabloid gossip about their lives. Do you think that's a good decision or a bad one? Do you think reality shows can be used to highlight positive behavior?
Also, what do you think it's like to share a life with someone famous? Do you think it's possible to be with that person without being overshadowed by their fame? Why or why not?