By Melissa Camacho,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Lebron's basketball docu shows hard work, sports logos.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
It highlights the hard work and commitment that goes into becoming a champion basketball team, no matter who your parents are, or where you come from.
Positive Role Models
It's a diverse cast, but the majority of coaches and the players featured are Black. One team member is from China. Some players allude to coming from less privileged or more difficult life experiences. Andre Chevalier is partially blind. The young men work extremely hard individually and as a team to balance school and basketball. Many of them want to attend college, help their families, and build a strong future by playing the sport.
Violence & Scariness
There are conversations about the team being one of the most hated teams across the country because they are a good team. Aggressive behavior is sometimes visible on the court. There's a lot of yelling from coaches. Players get injured. The death of Kobe Bryant is discussed.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Students are shown shirtless while working out.
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Words like "g--damn" are occasionally audible, but strong curses are muted.
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Products & Purchases
Logos for Nike and ESPN are prominently visible. Logos for various sports teams, Apple computers, Beats headphone, and other consumer goods are visible in the background.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Top Class is a documentary series that follows the Sierra Canyon High School Trailblazers throughout their 2019-2020 basketball season. There's some occasional strong language (curses are muted), yelling from coaches, and aggressive behavior on the court. The death of Kobe Bryant is discussed, as are some of differences between the players' former high schools and the elite prep school they now attend. Logos for Nike, ESPN, and other products are visible. Nonetheless, the series is focused on the hard work and commitment that goes into being a champion team.
Where to Watch
Videos and Photos
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What's the Story?
Co-executive produced by LeBron James, TOP CLASS: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF THE SIERRA CANYON TRAILBLAZERS, is a documentary series about the inner-workings of California's top high school basketball teams in the country. Sierra Canyon High School is a private, non-sectarian elite college prep school known for its academics, diversity, and 100 percent graduation rate. The Los Angeles area school is also home to the Trailblazers, a two-time state champion basketball team. Sierra Canyon coach Andre Chevalier expects the team to win their third state title in a row, especially since some of the nation's highest ranking players, including B.J. Boston, Amari Bailey, Shy Odom, Ziaire Williams, Lebron James' son Bronny, and Zaire Wade (the son of former player Dwyane Wade), are now on the team. Between practices, studying, and dealing with media attention and fanfare, the young men have to work hard on and off the court in order to come together as a team if they're going to remain on top.
Is It Any Good?
This solid reality series shows the inner-dynamics of a Southern California basketball team specifically put together for the 2019-2020 season to win a third state title. By following six principal players, It highlights how the students practice, study, travel, and strengthen the team bond. Through interviews with players, some of whom have moved from the other parts of the country to Southern California to specifically play for Sierra Canyon, viewers also learn a little more about their lived experienced, including how they are coping with, and making the most of, being a student at the elite prep school.
Viewers get to watch the team during key moments of the entire season. This includes some difficult moments, such as when players get injured, and when the team learns of Kobe Bryant's death. The conversations with coaches help define why players are guided the way they are, while fans like Vivica A. Fox, and sports writers like Eric Sondheimer add interesting details about how prominent the team has become over the years. Brief appearances by LeBron James and Dwayne Wade also make it fun. For those who love the sport, Top Class is a fun and interesting watch.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about basketball. Do you like the sport? What makes it exciting? Do you prefer to watch it or play it?
Documentaries like Top Class help show sports' teams success. Are there any disadvantages to a sports team or its players being featured on a TV series?
- Premiere date: February 26, 2021
- Cast: Andre Chevalier, B.J. Boston, Shy Odom
- Network: Freevee
- Genre: Reality TV
- Topics: Sports and Martial Arts, High School
- Character Strengths: Perseverance, Teamwork
- TV rating: NR
- Last updated: May 5, 2023
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.
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