TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
Tommy TV Poster Image
Lackluster police drama has strong women, some violence.

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Women who work in traditionally male-dominated environments face many challenges. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Tommy is far from perfect, but she does try to do her job fairly and honestly. Many of her colleagues are sexist.


Some yelling and screaming, and police in riot gear are mobilized. People are shown throwing punches at a rally. Guns are visible. References to sexual abuse. 


Sex scandals, sex workers, and other topics are discussed. 


Words like "damn" and "hell."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Drinking is sometimes visible.  

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Tommy is a police procedural that revolves around a new female police chief in Los Angeles. Guns are visible, and yelling, screaming, and mob-style violence are frequent, but there's nothing bloody. Episodes feature topics like human trafficking, sexual abuse, ICE deportations, police corruption, and other mature issues. Dysfunctional family relationships are also addressed. Strong language includes "damn" and "hell," and there's occasional drinking.  

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What's the story?

TOMMY is a dramatic police procedural about the first female chief of police for Los Angeles. Edie Falco plays Abigail "Tommy" Thomas, a former high-ranking NYPD officer who was hired by Mayor Buddy Gray (Thomas Sadoski) as the LA police chief after a major scandal resulted in the firing of the department's top brass. Now she's working with folks like chief of staff Don Cooper (Russell G. Jones), senior investigator Blake Sullivan (Adelaide Clemens), and Ken Rosey (Michael Chernus), a lawyer and speechwriter who is tasked with managing her public image. Ensuring her safety is driver and personal security officer Abner Diaz (Vladimir Caamaño). From police corruption to ICE roundups, she must consistently navigate the politics of the job in order to ensure effective law enforcement. Meanwhile, the pressures of her personal life, which include trying to rebuild her relationship with her estranged daughter Kate (played by Olivia Lucy Phillip) also make things complicated. But she's not afraid of being honest and will do what it takes to make sure that the LAPD does what it's supposed to do. 

Is it any good?

This sanitized, predictable police drama focuses more on the professional and social interactions of the new police chief than it does on actual crime solving. Edie Falco delivers as a tough police officer and reluctant feminists icon, but the series' main characters feel underdeveloped and two-dimensional. Despite the attempt to introduce timely and provocative plotlines, the writing isn’t strong or compelling enough to make them worth investing in. As a result, Tommy isn't all that entertaining or memorable. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the way Tommy addresses gender as it relates to women's roles in law enforcement. What kinds of challenges does Tommy face on the job because she's a woman? Do you think things would be different if she were a man?

  • Can police dramas be interesting without being violent? How? Would a less violent show be as interesting as one that includes high-speed chases and shootings?

TV details

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For kids who love drama

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