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Gil

Smart Characters who are "cool" and *KIND*? Editied OP

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Are there any shows or movies that depict successful "smart" people who aren't mean spirited, sarcastic, rude jack-a$$es to everyone in their lives? I'm specifically on the hunt for a show that has a "smart" (male) character who acts and behaves relatively normally among peers and in their society, but does NOT feature

  • sexual violence/victims of sexual violence/ or makes light of sexual violence.
  • drug abuse/alcohol (and the less social drinking going on in the background, the better), making light of drugs/alcohol abuse
  • gore/graphic violence
     

I'm asking here because I work outside the home and I don't have time to watch dozens of episodes, let alone hundreds. So I'm turning to the parents of the WTM for their collective expertise and advice. I need a show that I can (more or less) trust for The Boys who are 11ish years old and get pretty discouraged and upset that on screen being a "really smart (male)" = "social idiot" OR "loser" OR "weirdo" OR "autistic" OR "something *off*", etc. 

They're at the stage where their self-image doesn't need any more of a battering than The World already gives it. But I am not about to let them watch adults who are celebrated for their "smarts/genius" behaving abusively towards people with no real-world checks and balances or social consequences.

BBCs Sherlock is out on both the absurd drug abuse and his mean, untouchable, jackass behavior. Eccentricity isn't the problem, but his mean-license and the non-consequential, semi-celebrated drug abuse sure are. I'm still vetting Elementary but the first episode has Sherlock getting a live in  sober-buddy (Watson) and he's been hooking up with a prostitute so I'm not exactly feeling optimistic.  Shaun from The Good Doctor is smart but he's a medium-high functioning autistic and a social idiot. The Big Bang is a hard no. Not gonna fly here. I am saving Numb3rs for when they're older  because it's gorier and a little more sexualized sometimes than I'd like, but Charlie, Larry and Amita are smart yet kind and very socially capable.

Despite the steady alcohol usage we do really like Frasier, but Frasier and Niles are anything but "cool". We like many of the Spider-Man and Batman cartoons and comic books, (they haven't seen the movies yet) but we've also exhausted them over the last several years. We like MacGuyver and I just found out that there is a new version, so I'll be checking that out.

They complain that in media kids who are depicted as "smart" are snotty, know-it-alls, social outcasts, criminals or predominantly NERDS (in a bad way) and when adults are depicted as "smart" they're never just "normal" people. They're autistic, or superior, mean-spirited and viciously sarcastic individuals who put other people down almost constantly.

There IS a show out there that fits our needs, I'm sure but I need help finding it.

Edited by Gil
Clarifying my intentions and my intended audience
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Murdoch Mysteries is a TV show that immediately came to mind, but the mysteries may not be kid-friendly. 

 

Edit to add:  Chuck,   JAG,

And a few with female protagonists:  Gilmore girls, Alias, Dr. Quinn, medicine woman, When Calls the heart, Quantico

Edited by domestic_engineer
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The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is full of kind people.  I wouldn't say the characters have above average intelligence, but the writing is very smart.  The dialog is so fast paced that some folks watch each episode twice to catch everything.  

 

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God Friended Me, maybe?  You have an athiest podcaster, a journalist, and an IT person teamed up together.  Bones, though it's older.  MacGyver?
 

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On ‎12‎/‎23‎/‎2018 at 7:11 PM, domestic_engineer said:

Murdoch Mysteries is a TV show that immediately came to mind, but the mysteries may not be kid-friendly. 

Murdock Mysteries isn't on CommenSenseMedia, so I'll have to look around for this. What type of mysteries are there that you recall not being kid-friendly?
Mostly graphic violence, sexual violence and drug use are No Gos. 
I also monitor for sexually crude behavior. 

Edit to add:  Chuck,   JAG,
JAG looks like a good one,  I'm going to check it out.
But I couldn't tell which Chuck you meant, there are 3 on CommonSenseMedia and all of them are rated 14+ or higher. 

And a few with female protagonists:  Gilmore girls, Alias, Dr. Quinn, medicine woman, When Calls the heart, Quantico
If I remember the "smart guy" in ALIAS is a "loser", so that's out.
I'll look into Quantico. I couldn't find Dr. Quinn or Medicine Woman on CSM though.

 

 

 

 

4 hours ago, daijobu said:

The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is full of kind people.  I wouldn't say the characters have above average intelligence, but the writing is very smart.  The dialog is so fast paced that some folks watch each episode twice to catch everything.  

According to CSM this show seems to have a good deal of sexual references and honestly the plot seems a little...much. Who is the "smart" character? I couldn't tell from the CSM or the Wikipedia page. I'm particularly looking to find characters that The Boys would like and relate to. We don't watch much TV and I try to monitor what they watch, I'm not sure that UKS is appropriate for them at this time.

But I'm intrigued by what I've read. I'll check it out, maybe we'll watch it in a few years.

3 hours ago, HomeAgain said:

God Friended Me, maybe?  You have an athiest podcaster, a journalist, and an IT person teamed up together.  Bones, though it's older.  MacGyver?

God Friended Me, huh...I'm wary (and easily annoyed) by shows/movies/books with religious over-tones, but CSM makes it sound promising. I'll give it a whirl ahead of The Boys to see.
Bones is reported as being gory. 

They love MacGyver, it looks like there is a new version out and we'll have to check that out.

Edited by Gil

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23 hours ago, Matryoshka said:

Stargate SG-1

The Flash

Supergirl

I've never seen Stargate SG-1 but CSM makes it sound promising. But both Arrow and The Flash weren't good fits for our family right now, so I'm not expecting anything good from Super Girl.

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It's been several years and I didn't watch it with kids so I can't recall if it would be good for kids, but Eureka was full of smart people. Surely several of them were kind. I think it showed smart people were just people- kind, unkind, good, bad. etc...

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1 hour ago, Gil said:

 

 

 

According to CSM this show seems to have a good deal of sexual references and honestly the plot seems a little...much. Who is the "smart" character? I couldn't tell from the CSM or the Wikipedia page. I'm particularly looking to find characters that The Boys would like and relate to. We don't watch much TV and I try to monitor what they watch, I'm not sure that UKS is appropriate for them at this time.

But I'm intrigued by what I've read. I'll check it out, maybe we'll watch it in a few years.

God Friended Me, huh...I'm wary (and easily annoyed) by shows/movies/books with religious over-tones, but CSM makes it sound promising. I'll give it a whirl ahead of The Boys to see.
Bones is reported as being gory. 

They love MacGyver, it looks like there is a new version out and we'll have to check that out.

If you like MacGyver, I suspect SG1 will work well.  The guy that played MacGyver also plays the lead in SG1.  SG1 is for sure more SciFi than MacGyver, and it's old enough now that it's starting to feel a bit dated.  Also, the series is based on a movie.  The movie is MUCH more..........."Hollywood" I guess is the term I am looking for.  The actors are not the same for the series as they are for the movie.  Which, IMO, makes the series better.  The first two parter episode in particular is working to connect the movie to the series and as a result, is both a bit edgy-er....and chessy-er at the same time lol.  

 

The cast is an ensemble cast.  The lead of the group is the guy who played MacGyver, and he's a good guy, who is also a leader and plays dumber than he is.  The next is a female, SUPER smart, honorable character.  Then there's the archeologist, very idealistic, very smart.  And then Teal'c is the alien who also has a lot of honor.........kind of like a Klingon character, IMO, from StarTrek.  

 

StarGate SG1 is great.  

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Agreeing completely with @happysmileylady about Stargate SG-1. You may want to prewatch the first (two-part) episode in particular in case there's anything you want to skip over for the boys, but after that it settles into being a really excellent show.

Did anyone mention Numb3rs? I would say it fits the bill as far as smart+kind goes. I haven't evaluated its appropriateness for kids though - it would definitely be too much for my kids, but they are younger than yours, and I'm not sure where the line would be.

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2 minutes ago, purpleowl said:

Agreeing completely with @happysmileylady about Stargate SG-1. You may want to prewatch the first (two-part) episode in particular in case there's anything you want to skip over for the boys, but after that it settles into being a really excellent show.

Did anyone mention Numb3rs? I would say it fits the bill as far as smart+kind goes. I haven't evaluated its appropriateness for kids though - it would definitely be too much for my kids, but they are younger than yours, and I'm not sure where the line would be.

I've seen Numb3rs but I'm saving it for when they're a little older. Charlie and his friends are smart + kind, but some of the villians/crimes are a bit much in the gore department.

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Thanks for the suggestions. I'll begin previewing shows and ordering DVDs within a couple of weeks. If anyone can think of anything else, please share. I know it may seem like I'm shooting down a lot of ideas, but I'm specifically on the hunt for a show that does NOT feature

  • sexual violence/victims of sexual violence/ or makes light of sexual violence.
  • drug abuse/alcohol (and the less social drinking going on in the background, the better), making light of drugs/alcohol abuse
  • gore/graphic violence

and features a "smart" (male) character who acts and behaves relatively normally among peers and in their society. Ideally someone who is cool and not a social dunce/loser and whose intelligence is a good thing and a 'normal' part of them and not a license to bully and belittle everyone within ear-shot just because they can get out more sassy comebacks and fire off more one-liners than anyone else in the room.

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The first few episodes of Sg1 DO address some sexual violence issues.  But they do address them ina manner that makes it clear that it’s wrong, something the bad guys do, not the good honorable people.  And there is other violence but is not gory or graphic.  I am pretty gore phobic and sg1 is one of my favorite shows

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I lost track of what board I was on  and didn’t realize you were looking for shows for your kids. 

When calls the heart is definitely the cleanest of my suggestions, and one that the kids can watch .... although it’s probably too girly for your family.

Murdoch Mysteries is probably the next cleanest of the bunch, but there might be a few episodes where the crime/mystery may not be kid-friendly. 

The others I suggested are probably too girly or too adult for your boys. 

Maybe the movies “october Sky” or “Apollo 13”?  Another homeschool mom once suggested the “young Indiana Jones chronicles,” but I haven’t watched it myself.

 

Edited by domestic_engineer

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You said "socially well adjusted"! That rules out Dr Who and Sherlock!

You might want to look at Perry Mason, Hercule Poirot style mystery series.

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Annedroids is really good too! It's not a male lead but there's male supporting stars and I really like Gortimer Gibbons, Life on Normal Street. He's not necessarily portrayed as a genius but nobody is an idiot either. 

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Ooooh! Numbers! Have you seen the tv show, Numbers? I loved it. It's a drama about two brothers, one a mathmetician and the other an FBI agent. I wonder what your guys would think of the math ( they might find it oversimplified). There is peril and crime, but it was a network show, so not extreme.

ETA: the family relationships are positive even when not easy, the characters are good people who are learning and growing, and the genius is doing well adapting to and living in the world. Man, now I want to get the show for my kids.

Editing again! DH says he remembers a few scenes that were more than PG, in his opinion. There were underclothes showing. He's a very conservative person, as far as kid TV goes. So, preview some. 🙂

Edited by elroisees
ETA more

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12 hours ago, mathnerd said:

You said "socially well adjusted"! That rules out Dr Who and Sherlock!

You might want to look at Perry Mason, Hercule Poirot style mystery series.

I'll have to check out Doctor Who, I've never watched it, but have been hearing about it for a long while. BBC Sherlock is out because he's a cocaine-abusing jackass who never has to deal with the consequences of his behavior.

11 hours ago, Paige said:

Annedroids is really good too! It's not a male lead but there's male supporting stars and I really like Gortimer Gibbons, Life on Normal Street. He's not necessarily portrayed as a genius but nobody is an idiot either. 

I'll have to check these out. They look promising and even without a "smart" guy character, they might enjoy the shows. Thanks.

6 hours ago, elroisees said:

Ooooh! Numbers! Have you seen the tv show, Numbers? I loved it. It's a drama about two brothers, one a mathmetician and the other an FBI agent. I wonder what your guys would think of the math ( they might find it oversimplified). There is peril and crime, but it was a network show, so not extreme.

ETA: the family relationships are positive even when not easy, the characters are good people who are learning and growing, and the genius is doing well adapting to and living in the world. Man, now I want to get the show for my kids.

Editing again! DH says he remembers a few scenes that were more than PG, in his opinion. There were underclothes showing. He's a very conservative person, as far as kid TV goes. So, preview some. 🙂

Personally, I can't wait for The Boys to be old enough for Numb3rs, the main problem is the crimes/villains can be a little explicit and gory. The series opens with a serial-rapist who has killed his latest victim and they flashback to the murder in clips, show a person smothering in a plastic bag. I remember an arc with a teacher seducing her underage student, them murdering the students parents and going on a killing spree? Something wonky like that. Either way, too mature for mine but I might re-watch Numb3rs myself...I never did finish the series but made it pretty far along. Sexualized scenes don't stand out in my mind as much as the crimes.

Honestly I am confident that The Boys would LOVE most of it. They'd love to see math depicted as a super, useful ability in the "real world". Plus the dad-and-2-sons family dynamic resonates with our family as that's us: A dad and 2 sons. If I could dial-down the crimes/gore/some of the villians, I think that the show would be perfect. They would love that Charlie is a "normal" cool-guy, he has friends who get and encourage him rather than belittle him or pick on him when he talks math and I have one who would probably identify with Larry and like the questions that he posits and how he talks through things with Charlie and they'd love some of the stuff that Charlie and Larry like to spend time pondering 

They wouldn't find the math over-simplified. I saw a book abut the math used in the show, so some of the math may or may not be technically correct, I am sure that they took some creative liberties with how it was applied. I'm waiting on introducing the book and the show until they're older but I might have to re-watch Numb3rs myself.

Edited by Gil
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14 hours ago, Gil said:

I've never seen Stargate SG-1 but CSM makes it sound promising. But both Arrow and The Flash weren't good fits for our family right now, so I'm not expecting anything good from Super Girl.


Stargate SG-1 I think will be right up your alley.  As others have pointed out, the first episode, if it's uncensored (like, not on TV but on DVD) has a scene that you won't want your boys to see - I showed it to my girls on DVD, and as I'd only seen the TV version before we all had a bit of a shock.  It's also much more violent than any other episode - it premiered on cable and they were trying to match the tone of the movie (which is kind of awful). Honestly, the whole first season is a bit cheesy, and at the same time especially in the first couple episodes tries awkwardly to be edgy - if we re-watch, we usually only watch a few of those episodes and go on to later seasons that are awesome.  Like most of the Star Treks, it took a season or two for them to find their feet, and then it's awesome.  After a couple of awkward episodes in the first season, it's pretty darn wholesome.  If you want I could tell you the 1st season episodes to watch to get the storyline without bothering with the dumb ones.  

Hey, what about Star Trek?  They're all smart and kind.  My favorites are the original series (though so much cheese), Next Generation and Voyager.  DS-9 is a bit darker with some kind but way more not than the others.

I'll agree about Numb3rs - it's perfect for what you're asking for, but for older kids.  I can't remember exactly how old your kids are, but it's one I'd save for the teen years.

About the superhero shows - I tend to love superhero shows, but even I can't watch Arrow.  Everyone's a jerk (except maybe Felicity and the new tall nerd, but they put up with all the jerks).  The main character is humorless and awful.  The Flash has a totally different vibe - everyone is kind and supportive of each other, and it doesn't take itself seriously - lots of humor.  Supergirl is probably more female-focused than you want, from your further clarifications.  Since it moved to the CW in its second season, it has a focus on immigrant rights (except the immigrants in the show are all actual aliens from outer space).  And LOL, Gil, with your avatar, I'd think you'd be much more Kryptonian-friendly. :laugh:  

Edited by Matryoshka

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Seconding Annedroids, the kids are about your guys' ages and they are all smart and kind. It's definitely a kids' show, totally clean, youngish compared to others mentioned here but my tweens enjoy it.

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If your boys have never watched Avatar: The Last Airbender I think they would enjoy it. Appeals to a broad range of ages.

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Also on the kids' shows side of things are the How to Train Your Dragon movies and spin-off shows like Dragons Race to the Age; Hiccup is portrayed as sort of socially awkward in the first movie but ends up being the hero, and the social awkwardness aspect isn't really carried over into the spin off shows--he's portrayed as smart and a leader.

 

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15 minutes ago, maize said:

If your boys have never watched Avatar: The Last Airbender I think they would enjoy it. Appeals to a broad range of ages.

We're huge fans of Avatar the Last Airbender! Its a phenomenal show in many ways.We knew better than to watch the live action movie and thought that the Korra sequel was a flop. The Avatar the Last Airbender comics are met with mixed reviews, but the original Avatar the Last Airbender is still a favorite.

I heard that Netflix might do a live action adaptation of the series and I'm cautiously waiting to see how they do.

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Doctor Who has been my kid’s favorite show forever.  We started with the old ones....

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Forgot to mention the "How to train your dragon" series: Riders of Berk, Defenders of Berk, Race to the Edge. They portray a main character and his pet dragon and their relationship with each other as well as their team of do-gooders - spinoffs of the books by Cressida Crowell. Another option are the umpteen Pokemon TV serials - Ash Ketchum is kind, persevering, talented and ambitious and loves his pokemon.

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Also, completely off the wall from the other posts here, and perhaps a bit young for your kids, I am not sure of their ages....

 

Phineas and Ferb.  It's a Disney cartoon.  Phineas and Ferb are two kids are are.............kind of.....nerdy, but still, all the kids their age love them.  They have an older teenage sister who is always trying to "bust" them (get them in trouble) but she almost never succeeds.  And they are both really smart, with quirks, that aren't portrayed as socially awkward but instead seem to make them super awesome to all the other kids their age.  At the same time, they don't care what the kids their age are doing and are just doing what they are doing because they want to do it.

 

It's a kids cartoon, and there's a bad guy, but even he is kind of a cool smart good guy.  Because it's a kids cartoon, there's basically no gore or violence, just, good guys vs bad guys (mostly with the secret agent platypus) At the same time, as an adult, it's one of my FAVORITE KID SHOWS EVER.  They build their own roller coaster.  They build an animal translator.  They modify their mom's car to take them to the moon.  Their parents are oblivious but that's because it's a kids show and oblivious parents are part of the fun.  It's NOT because the dad is a blubbering idiot or anything like that.

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On 12/24/2018 at 9:31 PM, Lucy the Valiant said:

Monk

Foyle's War

Endeavour

So, Monk may be out because he's socially "odd" (portrayed endearingly), but he IS a gentleman and does solve crimes.

Detective Chief Superintendant Foyle is strong, intelligent, kind, and highly intelligent, while adhering to a gracious but unflinching moral code. He's a police detective on the south coast of Hastings, England, during the 1940's (skip the last season, IMO).

Endeavour is a little romantic for boys, maybe.

Have you watched an episode or 2 of Manifest? 

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+1 on Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis. 

+1 on Star Trek...the order of my faves: Next Generation, the original one, Voyager. Agreed about DS9 being slightly darker. This is my least favorite. I would actually watch the Enterprise series before the DS9 one.

Maybe Dr. Who? I don't watch it myself, but it seems to be really popular with kids on Athena's Academy.

There were these shows I loved back in the 80s called Whiz Kids & Doogie Howser, MD. I also really used to like watching Perry Mason shows as well.

Edited by calbear

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On 12/24/2018 at 7:00 PM, mathnerd said:

You might want to look at Perry Mason, Hercule Poirot style mystery series.

 

I used to also enjoy a British detective serial called “a touch of Frost” based on a book series. It was a little gritty, but it has been a while and I cannot recall too much - worth checking out to see if you think it is good for your boys.

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer?  I think of Oz as being the ultimate smart, cool, wise character.

Castle?  He is a very smart, cool character.  Actually, I think the Mentalist is similar, but better, but it includes more violence.

I second, third, fourth Stargate SG-1, and we also liked the spin-off Stargate Atlantis.

Would they be interested in The West Wing?  That is full of smart characters.  Or another Sorkin show, Sports Night.  They might enjoy that.

What about Lie to Me?  That features some very smart characters, and not too much graphic violence.

Or what about Psych?  The main character is very smart, though also quite immature and mischievous.

Oooh, White Collar!!  Almost nothing questionable....except that the main character is a brilliant, charismatic, semi-reformed art thief.

Maybe the X-Files?  Those are smart characters, and not too much gore, but a lot of Twilight Zone-esque creepiness.  This is also how I would categorize Dr. Who - very little gore, but plenty of nightmare inducing images...I'm looking at you Weeping Angels!!

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Although I love these two shows, I don't think they are going to work for Gil:

Rodney in Stargate Atlantas is a super smart scientist and an extremely conceited, arrogant, sarcastic Jacka$$.  He is a major character of the show. 

There is no way Monk is going to fit the requirement to be NOT a  "social idiot" OR "loser" OR "weirdo" OR "autistic" OR "something *off*". 😲

Edited by lewelma
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Star Trek:  The Next Generation

Foyle's War

The old British Avengers series (made in the 1960's) -- can't get any cooler than that  🙂 

 

 

 

 

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12 hours ago, lewelma said:

Rodney in Stargate Atlantas is a super smart scientist and an extremely conceited, arrogant, sarcastic Jacka$$.  He is a major character of the show. 

I actually like Rodney's character arc.  When he is introduced as a minor character in SG-1, he is portrayed as insufferable and unlikable.  He is tolerated for his brains, but is largely reviled for his personality.  He is a one-sided foil for Samantha Carter.

But when he takes on a larger role in Stargate Atlantis, I think his character really grows and becomes more multi-faceted.  He is still arrogant and sarcastic, but he also learns to function as part of a stable working group.  He makes friends and starts to gain some respect from his peers, superiors and subordinates.  He is still, intrinsically, a critical, cowardly, egotistical character, but I think more and more often he shows flashes of kindness, empathy, bravery, and respect for others.

I think he is an interesting, nuanced character.  He certainly would not be an appropriate role model for a young child who is still a black and white thinker, but I think it is good, and realistic, and unavoidable, for older kids to start to encounter characters who are a complex mix of strengths and flaws.

Wendy

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1 hour ago, wendyroo said:

I actually like Rodney's character arc.  When he is introduced as a minor character in SG-1, he is portrayed as insufferable and unlikable.  He is tolerated for his brains, but is largely reviled for his personality.  He is a one-sided foil for Samantha Carter.

But when he takes on a larger role in Stargate Atlantis, I think his character really grows and becomes more multi-faceted.  He is still arrogant and sarcastic, but he also learns to function as part of a stable working group.  He makes friends and starts to gain some respect from his peers, superiors and subordinates.  He is still, intrinsically, a critical, cowardly, egotistical character, but I think more and more often he shows flashes of kindness, empathy, bravery, and respect for others.

I think he is an interesting, nuanced character.  He certainly would not be an appropriate role model for a young child who is still a black and white thinker, but I think it is good, and realistic, and unavoidable, for older kids to start to encounter characters who are a complex mix of strengths and flaws.

Wendy

 

This is exactly what my older son said when I was telling him about this thread.  He said Rodney really develops over the show, and he is one of my ds's favorite characters of all time. 

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My husband suggested Get Smart, quite old but he loves it. The guy is not exactly smart, but is so adaptable that he solves all problems on the fly, often through luck. 

Edited by lewelma

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You might try Sanctuary or Andromeda.  Neither has sexual violence.  

Sanctuary has the characters of Henry, the engineer geek, and Will, a psychiatrist geek.  Both are very smart and pretty kind.  

Andromeda has the captain, Dylan Hunt.  He is very smart and very kind. 

As much as I like Stargate, I don’t think it will work for you.  There is too much sexual content in the first season.  Hathor and Broca Divide come to mind immediately.  I think there are others as well.

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25 minutes ago, JenneinCA said:

As much as I like Stargate, I don’t think it will work for you.  There is too much sexual content in the first season.  Hathor and Broca Divide come to mind immediately.  I think there are others as well.


Stargate SG-1 is PG rated after season 1, and never gets above a PG-13 except in the 1st episode, and even then there are only a few to skip (yes, skip Hathor - I skipped that one and a couple of others with my kids the first time through).  But that's no reason to skip the other 9 seasons.

4 hours ago, lewelma said:

This is exactly what my older son said when I was telling him about this thread.  He said Rodney really develops over the show, and he is one of my ds's favorite characters of all time. 


I did not suggest Stargate Atlantis mostly because of Rodney - he does start out as a sterotypical arrogant smart jerk, but he does develop so much over the show, and learns to be kind(er).  I especially love the episodes with his sister, where he really has an epiphany about what a jerk he's been.  But I figured Gil was looking for something where the character started out not arrogant, not had to learn how to overcome it.  Rodney's also a favorite character of mine - but he takes a while to learn how to be nice.

And whatever you do, never watch Stargate Universe.  They tried, for some unfathomable reason, to make a spin-off that was dark and humorless.  It's like the antithesis of the other Stargate shows, which are full of warmth and humor.  SGU instead has lots of jerk-face people who hate each other.  Why???

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OMG, yes, skip Hathor for SG1.  But, I don't think the Hathor episode is necessary to understand the storyline of the series.  In fact, many episodes do a good job of standing alone and you might be able to just straight start with season 2.

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Just popping in to say that Arthur Conan Doyle wrote the original Sherlock as a cocaine user and a jerk, so it would be rare to find any version anywhere that meets your criteria.

My personal votes for are for Star Trek Next Gen or else Enterprise.

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3 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

OMG, yes, skip Hathor for SG1.  But, I don't think the Hathor episode is necessary to understand the storyline of the series.  In fact, many episodes do a good job of standing alone and you might be able to just straight start with season 2.


Yes, just this.  Especially in the first season when I think they were still figuring out where they were going, there are a lot of episodes that are not at all necessary to understand the overall story of the show.

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1 hour ago, GailV said:

Just popping in to say that Arthur Conan Doyle wrote the original Sherlock as a cocaine user and a jerk, so it would be rare to find any version anywhere that meets your criteria.

My personal votes for are for Star Trek Next Gen or else Enterprise.

To be clear: I'm not particularly looking for an on-screen version of Sherlock that'd be acceptable, I'm looking for (male) characters that are 

(1) known to be really smart.
(2) are going to be considered cool (from my adolescent sons point of view) and
(3) behaves in a way that wouldn't be a bad influence on my adolescent sons.
(4) doesn't confirm to the stereotype: "really smart (male)" = "social idiot" OR "loser" OR "weirdo" OR "autistic" OR "something *off*" <--this one upsets and annoys The Boys.

and are in shows that don't violate my 3 basic criterion for media in our home:  a-gory violence, b-drug & alcohol abuse, and c-sexual violence .

I don't know kids shows so the characters that I thought of first: Charlie Eppes, Malcolm (from Malcolm in the Middle), Sherlock Holmes, Mike Ross, etc, aren't good fits. Hence the thread.

Thanks everyone for the suggestions. I'm ordering DVDs from the library and will begin vetting shows soonish. 

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Above someone mentioned Eureka. I agree that would be one to look at. There is a weird sexual story line in the first episode that gets dropped immediately, so if you find that off-putting you could skip that episode. The idea is that everyone in the town is super-smart, though the main character feels dumb in comparison. This means that there are some who act nerdy or weird, and that are jerks, and at least one person who is autistic, but there are many who are well-adjusted, successful in many areas, etc.  There are a lot of strong female roles but also good male ones. 

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My family really enjoyed Merlin also - definitely one to check out.

Also, have you looked into the series for Lost in space?  The son is not always the smartest, but there are situations where he really shines with something clever.  I don't remember much on your exclusion list, though there is an episode where a guy has smuggled alcohol, but I don't remember it being glorified, and the main family is against it.  

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