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 Top Boy: Summerhouse is a crime drama about two drug dealers operating in the East London public housing projects. The original Top Boy series aired in the 2010s, and after rapper Drake signed on as Executive Producer Netflix revived the show and set it a few years later with much of the original cast. Top Boy: Summerhouse features gun violence, simulated sex, drug use, and a lot of profanity.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
TOP BOY SUMMERHOUSE picks up years after the original Top Boy series left off. Dushane (Ashley Walters) and Sully (Kane Robinson, also known as the British rapper Kano) find themselves estranged from the drug trade. Sully is in prison, while Dushane works in an auto body shop in Jamaica. Slowly, the two find themselves pulled back into criminal life while new faces around town, like ruthless Jamie (Micheal Ward), who is a murderous gangster as well as a doting parental figure to his two younger brothers are their parents were killed. When Sully and Dushare reemerge on the scene, all the players battle of the new power dynamics.
Is it any good?
Though it's mostly by-the-numbers plotwise, this series has a couple of fun things going for it. Top Boy: Summerhouse's history makes the characters feel lived in and relaxed, like the audience has just happened to turn the corner into the housing works where the primary action takes place. There's no exposition dump of the sort that weighs down a lot of new ensemble-driven dramas. And the setting feels unique. Not the depiction of the drug trade itself, which feels like a knockoff of The Wire after years of diminishing returns, but East London, a complex and underseen area that here feels ripe with discovery and dramatic possibility.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about East London. How does Top Boy's setting compare with similar shows set in the U.S.? What can you learn about British culture from Top Boy? How does the show compare to what you know about London?
What are the positive and negative choices that Dushane and Sully make in their lives? Do they make any ethical or moral decisions? What are they? How do they arrive at those decisions?
How does Top Boy portray drug dealing? What do you think the show's opinion of drug dealers is? How does this come out in the action?
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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.
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