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What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Tyler Perry’s Young Dylan is a positive, family-themed comedy series aimed towards tweens. Reminiscent of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, the central character is a young aspiring hip-hop artist who's sent to live with his wealthy extended family in the affluent suburbs of Chicago after being abandoned by his mother. Cultures clash, and humor and hijinks ensue. There’s no bad language to worry about here, but Dylan’s edgier background leads to some innuendo that is innocent and misinformed. More serious themes, like child abandonment and class distinctions, are dealt with in more gentle ways, much of which will fly over the heads of younger viewers.
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What's the story?
TYLER PERRY’S YOUNG DYLAN is a comedy series about a young street-wise boy from Chicago who goes to live with his relatives in the suburbs. Dylan (Dylan Gilmer) is an 10-year-old aspiring hip-hop artist living with his Grandmother Viola (Aloma Wright) in a retirement home after his hippie mother abandoned him. Knowing that it’s not the right place for him to grow up, Viola asks her more privileged, suburban-dwelling son Myles Wilson (Carl Anthony Payne II) and daughter-in-law Yasmine (Mieko Hillman) to take in their nephew and give him a stable home environment. Dylan will also have his cousins Rebecca (Celina Smith) and Charlie (Hero Hunter) to play with. The Wilsons are happy to make him part of their family, but Dylan’s style creates some culture clashes that turns his new family’s way of life upside down.
Is it any good?
This lighthearted series, which is reminiscent of the ‘90s hit The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, offers a traditional "fish out of water" narrative. Dylan Gilmar (a.k.a. Young Dylan), a young rapper known for his appearances on America’s Got Talent and The Ellen DeGeneres Show, steals scenes easily, and he's offered opportunities throughout the narrative to showcase his singing talents. Celebs like DJ Khaled add to the fun. But the importance of extended family, which is a trademark of Tyler Perry’s work, is a central theme throughout the show. It also addresses more serious issues, like child abandonment and socioeconomic class differences with gentle humor. Some parents may find Tyler Perry’s Young Dylan a bit much for the younger set, but hip-hop loving tweens will enjoy it.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the way Tyler Perry’s Young Dylan represents family. Does everyone in the family get along? Despite their differences, how do they show how important they are to one another?
Is it fair to expect Dylan to adjust to everything his new family does or believes in? What kinds of things can the Wilson family learn from him?
What is Dylan Gilmer’s real life story? How was he discovered? How does the show's character reflect the real Dylan?
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