After a successful first season, Season 2 of Netflix’s series Alexa & Katie is releasing just in time for the holidays. The heartwarming sitcom follows two best friends, Alexa and Katie, as they navigate high school life while Alexa undergoes treatment for cancer. Cancer is a serious subject, but the show seems pretty lighthearted, so parents may be wondering, what ages should watch Alexa & Katie?
According to Netflix, Alexa & Katie is appropriate for kids aged 8 and up. And while the story follows Alexa’s experience with cancer, the show’s tone isn’t scary. It focuses more on her friendship with Katie, and the more hopeful and positive moments in the teens’ lives. Common Sense Media, who gave Alexa & Katie an age rating of 11+, noted that the show features positive role models and highlights strong, loving relationships. Tonally, the series is similar to Disney channel sitcoms and features a live studio audience, lots of laughs, and funny teen pranks and hijinks.
Every kid and family is different, so as a parent, it’s up to you to decide whether or not the series is appropriate for your child. As with any TV series or movie, if you’re unsure about the show’s content or tone, it may be a good idea to watch a few episodes ahead of time. Even though Netflix has given the show an 8+ rating, screening it beforehand will give you a better idea of what to expect and whether or not it’s in line with your family’s dynamic.
Season 1 followed Alexa (Paris Berelc) and Katie (Isabel May) through their first year of high school, as they juggled things like homework, their social lives, and teenage crushes while Alexa goes through chemo. Season 2 will catch up with the BFFs as they begin their sophomore year and will focus on Alexa and Katie’s friendship after Alexa’s chemo is complete.
In an interview with IndieWire, Alexa & Katie creator Heather Wordham said she wanted the second season to continue to highlight the teens’ friendship and their support for one another, along with weaving in their families’ storylines. “The friendship between the girls, I think what we want to do is just make sure we’re still telling those stories, that we’re paying attention to that relationship and showing that support they have for each other,” said Wordham. “Also, now that we know the whole family, it will be fun, hopefully, to get to do those stories and include everybody. The older brother will be a senior, so him trying to figure out what he’s doing with his life and that kind of thing.”
She also told the outlet that she wanted to continue Alexa’s story post chemo, because when she spoke to real cancer patients about their own experiences, she learned that many of them felt lonely after recovery. “Some of these adults I talked to who had cancer as kids said that after they got better, they had this feeling of isolation” said Wordham. “Because they didn’t look sick anymore, nobody treated them that way, so their worry was just internal. It’s a hard thing to show, but it was such an interesting insight.”
Cancer is not an easy subject to talk about with a child, but watching Alexa & Katie as a family may prompt insightful conversations about compassion and empathy. But, if you’re still unsure about the content and whether or not it’s appropriate for your child, screening it ahead of time is a good idea.
Season 2 of Alexa & Katie hits Netflix on Dec. 26.
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