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 Too Hot To Handle is a reality dating competition that challenges contestants to refrain from sexual activity in exchange for a cash prize. There’s lots of strong sexual innuendo, ranging from explicit discussions about sexual activities, to couples kissing and engaging in sexual acts. The cast wears skimpy, skin-revealing bikinis, and are often shown in various stages of undress (but no visible nudity). There's lots of cursing, including "s--t" and "f--k", and heavy drinking.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Narrated by Desiree Burch, TOO HOT TO HANDLE is a reality dating show that challenges contestants to make romantic connections without having sex. Ten good looking twenty-somethings with self-proclaimed strong sex drives come together in a luxurious tropical villa in Mexico for a four week retreat in hopes of finding love. Once they settle in, they are informed by a virtual assistant named "Lana" that they must refrain from any sort of sexual activity if they want to win the $100K prize. Every time contestants breaks the rules, the prize money decreases based on the kind of sexual act committed. Meanwhile, contestants are also watched to see if they are making deeper connections with each other without sexual contact. Those who are not are eliminated. At the end of the month, the remaining contestants divide what is left of the prize money between them.
Is it any good?
Much like Netflix’s Love Is Blind, this voyeuristic reality competition is designed to encourage participants to actively focus on things other than sex when trying to connect with another person. But watching cast members engage in some sort of sexual activity is at the forefront of the show gives it a Love Island-like feel as cameras record the model-type contestants talking, drinking, and (inevitably) enjoying sexual encounters. The constant talking about who is pairing up, and who is having sex (and costing them money) makes it equally tedious. As a result, Too Hot To Handle is only nominally entertaining, and misses its mark when it comes to offering constructive messages about building healthy intimate adult relationships.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how feasible it is to genuinely fall in love with someone on a reality show. What are the challenges to keeping that relationship after the cameras stop rolling? Does anyone in the Too Hot To Handle cast appear to understand that challenge?
What messages does this series send about the connection between healthy intimate relationships and sexual activity? Are these messages clear? Who are they intended for?
Our editors recommend
For kids who love reality TV
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.
Streaming options powered by JustWatch