Training Day

TV review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Training Day TV Poster Image
Good cop, bad cop battle over what justice means.

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Young cop Kyle Craig stands by his ethics, despite pressure from older, more seasoned rouge cop Frank Rourke. Even bad cop Rourke protects a kid who's being pressured into working for a gang. Male and female police officers work together equally.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Kyle and his wife have open discussions about his problems as a cop. Kyle shows loyalty to his father's memory. In a flashback, Kyle's father talks about being a person who "builds up" vs. "tears down" society.


Realistic gun violence, multiple shoot-outs. In the first episode, a female police officer is shot and shown bleeding to death on the street. Cop Frank Rourke's character is likable and makes some very violent decisions (setting a house on fire to clear out people in it; placing a woman in harm's way to lure a criminal to him; commenting, "I'm gonna make damn sure they never see the inside of a courtroom") within a plot that sometimes implies that his violent choices are justified. One drug lord character is known as "Blowtorch Bob" for his use of a blowtorch in torturing victims.


Kyle and his wife kiss with some mild suggestive dialogue. Frank's girlfriend is an LA madame; one of the women working for her is used as a pawn in an attempt to capture a drug lord. 


"Bitch," "hell", "ass," damn," "bastard."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Lots of references to the LA drug trade and related money made in the drug trade. A party at a swank LA home shows people drinking alcohol. Frank takes a drink of hard liquor as he's detaining a suspected drug dealer.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Training Day is a CBS crime thriller with a plot similar to the 2001 movie of the same name. There's a lot of violence, some swearing, and some glorification of rough justice by cops. The show depicts Los Angeles as a near war zone due to the drug trade. One detective is taking the law into his own hands, so a young, ethical, heroic officer is sent to partner with him (while really keeping tabs on him) by the LAPD. Meanwhile, the young cop is searching for the killer of his father, who was also a police officer.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byBigbro27 February 3, 2017

Proves why we might have a problem in our real justice system

I watched the show last night and I did enjoy it very much it was fun and hard to resist the two main guys worked well together despite tension between them now... Continue reading

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What's the story?

Idealistic police officer Kyle Craig (Justin Cornwell) is paired with grizzled cop Frank Rourke (Bill Paxton) by the LAPD in TRAINING DAY. The LAPD knows Rourke's activities have crossed the line into lawlessness while he hunts down the worst criminals in the drug trade, so they send Craig in under the guise of "training" with Rourke -- but he's really keeping tabs on him. Craig's father, also a cop, was killed in a mysterious robbery (or hit). Craig wants to find his killer, and Rourke, who went to the police academy with Craig's dad, wants to help him. Craig's wife is a wise school teacher, while Rourke's girlfriend is an in-the-know LA madame. By the end of the first episode, Craig realizes he's the one who needs to train Rourke back onto the right side of the law. But Rourke, of course, thinks otherwise.

Is it any good?

There's an old-Western feel to this modern crime drama that often works, but at times it crosses into a bad caricature. In the first episode of Training Day, one shoot-out even happens in a dusty ghost town. Rogue cop Frank Rourke is the quiet but deadly lone wolf who takes on outlaw drug dealers. This show's portrayal of most characters is pretty simplistic: On one side there's a lot of evil, bad dudes, and on the other, the good, brave police officers -- all except Rourke, who's a coldhearted, jaded cop (with a tiny part of his heart still soft, as displayed when he saves a young kid from being bullied into working as a lookout for a drug-dealing gang). Good cop Kyle Craig brings the most nuanced character to the show. He's a great husband, an ethical police officer, and a son loyal to the memory of his fallen father. Yet his dad's murder haunts him. He needs to find his killer, and a key buried in his father's garden may hold the secret. When he and Rourke pair up, Craig's desire for justice mixed with Rourke's lawless -- often vengeful -- pursuit of bad guys can make for some interesting drama. Who's training whom on Training Day? 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about Kyle and Frank's relationship in Training Day. Do these two cops like each other? Respect each other? Fear each other?

  • Whether it be law enforcement, medicine, or any other profession, there are some ethical standards to which most people in the profession hold themselves accountable. Why are ethics necessary in a profession? Is there ever a time when those ethics should be overlooked? Why, or why not?

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love crime drama

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