VH1 Goes Inside

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
VH1 Goes Inside TV Poster Image
Docu looks at major entertainment moments.

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

The series documents the historical and popular impact of people and events in the entertainment world. It offers insights on how race, class, and gender have impacted the entertainment industry. Men and women of various racial/ethnic and class backgrounds are profiled.

Violence

Some episodes include lyrics and/or discussions about theft, gang violence, and murder. Some of the music video footage shows guns and dead people. Certain artists' criminal behavior is sometimes discussed.

Sex

Some episodes feature conversations and lyrics that reference sex and intimate relationships. Some music video footage shows dancers moving suggestively and wearing tight leotards. One episode documents steamy soap opera scenes; others show women wearing sexy clothing and bathing suits.

Language

Audible language includes words like "damn" and "hell" stronger choices ("ass," "f--k") are bleeped out. The "N" word is sometimes heard. Rude gestures are blurred out.

Consumerism

The series features (and, some might say, promotes) popular artists and other famous celebrities, as well as TV shows and movies. But they're all discussed in a historical context.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Occasional references to drug and alcohol abuse. Cigar smoking is sometimes visible; tobacco pipes occasionally shown as props.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this documentary series -- which profiles famous artists, TV shows, and media events that have significant places in contemporary entertainment history -- sometimes has some edgy content. Depending on the episode, some of the footage contains strong language (though words like "f--k" are bleeped out), women in revealing clothing, and some discussions about gang violence, shooting, and murder. While the series does showcase popular musicians, actors, and shows, they're discussed in a historical context and aren't really being promoted for commercial purposes.

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What's the story?

Documentary series VH1 GOES INSIDE looks at artists, TV shows, and events that have become notable and beloved parts of America's entertainment culture. With the help of classic video clips and interview footage, the series offers a behind-the-scenes look at what made talk-show personalities like Arsenio Hall and reality shows like America's Most Wanted famous. It also offers some insight about the way these people and events shape American society today.

Is it any good?

Overall, the series offers interesting (and even educational) background about some of America's most popular entertainment phenomena. Its wide range of subject matter is particularly appealing. Also, unlike other similar series, much of the focus here is on celebrating the positive impact that various people have had on the way we look at -- and what we expect from -- the entertainment industry today. Some episodes also make a point of noting how the industry looks at race, class, and gender, giving credit to the efforts of those who managed to break down stereotypes and took a chance on offering alternatives to the entertainment status quo.

The language, imagery, and subject matter in some episodes of VH1 Goes Inside may be too strong for tweens, but the series offers teens and adults a fun and usually compelling way to learn a little more about what defined the pop culture landscape years ago and what's having an impact on how it's defined today.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the role of celebrities in our lives. What makes a musician or an actor an important figure in our culture? Are there people who aren't famous but also make major contributions? Families can also discuss documentaries. What makes a good documentary? Are documentaries the same as reality shows? Why or why not?

TV details

  • Premiere date: June 20, 2003
  • Network: VH1
  • Genre: Reality TV
  • TV rating: NR
  • Available on: Streaming

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