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4 Sneaky TV Shows to Watch with Your Teens

Check out these gems that offer great opportunities to communicate great values without being preachy.

by
Bonnie Ramthun

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November 25, 2013 - 7:00 am
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bored-teenagers

Television is a minefield for families. My father, never one to pull his punches, calls it an open sewer of cultural rot. He’s not far off. Promiscuous sex, drug use, adultery, graphic violence — you turn on your television and you’re going to get it all, and most of it is bad. But just try to get your teenagers to watch old reruns of The Andy Griffith Show with you and the family room will empty faster than you can say “X-Box.” Yet shared time together is one of the most valuable gifts you can give your teens. How do you manage some family television time where you can promote the values you want to pass on to your teenagers without boring them to death?

There actually are some great television shows today that promote good values in subtle ways. Not that these shows aren’t rude, violent and outrageous, but hidden in the pop culture flash are powerfully good values and great moments. Please, though, watch them with your teenage kids, and not with your young children or, God forbid, your elderly mom and dad. If you need your family values pure and unsullied by popular culture, feel free to watch re-runs of The Waltons or Little House on the Prairie. But if you want to keep the teens in the room and have some moments where you can share some good values with them, try these:

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All Comments   (8)
All Comments   (8)
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Great article. I love the fact you admit that kids watch tv! Of course they do, but so many don't admit it. But watching together is a great way to talk about values, etc. I have to admit I watch and enjoy all but the half hour sitcom. One I loved was Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Not on now, but the Halloween show when fear ended up being a mini monster that Buffy stomped on makes me laugh to this day. Sorry. I love using modern culture to talk about true conservatism. Thanks for suggesting these!
45 weeks ago
45 weeks ago Link To Comment
Try the sci-fi show Stargate SG-1 (1997-2006), it is one of the most pro-USA Pro-Military patriotic shows you will ever see (aside from the first episode it is family friendly but the directors cut of the pilot cuts that one scene out, as it was forced upon them by the network).

Also try the 1980's british citcom Yes, Minister and its follow up series Yes, Prime Minister (same cast, but the minister moves up). It was Thatchers favorite show and truly mocks government incompetence. One of the best episodes in from Yes, Prime Minister on government eduction vs vouchers, it nailed the debate perfectly and even forced liberal friends to think, and that show has made some of my liberal friends shift rightwards. The show takes on in a humorous fashion, Unions, bureaucracy, corruption, rent seeking, the UN, etc. Watch it with your kids, it will help.

Also another things is don't have a TV, my parents got rid of ours when I was 12, best thing they ever did for me. All that filfth was gone, and I only watched on VHS and later DVD what my parents approved of, letting them control the content. Also make sure you have filters on your computer before letting kids use it too, my parents did that
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Correction, Bonnie: It's SECOND star to the right.

Hope you didn't send any Lost Boys off course.....
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
Blue Bloods!
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
How I Met Your Mother - Right.

My daughter loves that show. I sized up one episode, and told her that was ludicrous.

Then I had to explain that in the real world, when men hang out they don't obsess, prattle, and gossip. Especially when a woman is present.

Matter of fact I may have used the "F" word to describe their effeminate behavior.
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
This is why conservatives are losing the culture wars. Have you never heard of a literary device? They use them in movies and tv shows too. This is fiction; it doesn't depict the real world. You can't have a show where somebody is thinking to the viewer; they have to say it. You have to create a venue where he can say what he's thinking in a way he never ever would in real life. Watch the 1984 'Dune' and tell me what you think of the whispered thoughts throughout. You can do that in a book, but it really doesn't work in a play, movie, or tv show.

Fiction, by definition, isn't real. Instead of demanding that it should be, try explaining the literary devices used to get messages across. Good grief! It's like prim Victorians demanding that every one of the parable of Jesus had to be literally true! Of course they weren't factual depictions of events, but they were the embodiment of the best of fiction: falsehoods that illustrates truth. That is the essence of art, which is always at root deception. Whether it's a flute pretending to be a bird or a sculpture trying to be King David, it's never the real thing. But if it illuminates truth, it is successful art, and if universally accessible, it is great art. Even the camera lies, but may also make truth visible. Realism in art is incidental, not essential.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
My kids - including my teenager - love Andy Griffith and Little house. If a show is cultural rot, then don't let them watch it. Who's in charge anyway?
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
I have a better program to watch: None. Just don't let them watch any TV. I don't watch TV and neither do my kids.
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
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