Why is Outer Banks rated TV-MA?

Outer Banks Season 1. Courtesy of Netflix
Outer Banks Season 1. Courtesy of Netflix /

Outer Banks, a popular Netflix original series, is a teen drama that premiered on the platform in 2020. Its combination of fun, action, thrills, and romance boosted the show to fan favorite status and pulled audiences into a twisting tale centered on a gold treasure that’s been lost for centuries.

The series, breezing past the budding blooms of spring in its April 2020 release, brought the simmering heat of summer to screens with our introduction to the Pogues. John B, Kie, Pope, and JJ are a group of best friends whose hunt for the missing gold brings an overwhelming amount of trouble to their doorsteps.

With their lives threatened, their futures in question, and a deadly race to claim the gold, the quartet have a lot stacked against them in season 1. Things get even wilder in the second season of the series, and who knows what’s in store for season 3 (and season 4!).

Outer Banks isn’t your typical teen drama. The stakes are unbelievably high and life in OBX can be rough. But the show is one of many teen series on Netflix that’s rated higher than TV-14. Why? It has to do with content.

Outer Banks season 3 age rating

Scandal isn’t the name of the game in Outer Banks. Neither is salaciousness. Besides some kissing and brief instances of sexual exploration that aren’t graphic, there isn’t much sexuality in the series. Rather the show has earned its TV-MA rating for strong language and intense violence.

Murder is littered throughout the series. Dead bodies are lingered on. In some cases, those bodies have been mutilated. The character JJ suffers under the abuse of his father which includes graphic depictions of their physical altercations as he tries to defend himself.

The fights between the two rival factions of the town, the Kooks and the Pogues, are extended affairs. Threats, an attempted drowning, a fall from a high building after being shoved, characters getting jumped, and the use of a gun as a means of intimidation are just a few occurrences in their clashes. There’s also drug and alcohol use.

On top of sequences involving teens being threatened by adults on more than one occasion, Outer Banks is a series that leans hard into action and crime genre tropes. It’s full throttle the whole way through. For that reason, the series earns its TV-MA rating and will probably be a little too mature for younger teenagers to tune into.

Outer Banks season 3 premieres Thursday, Feb. 23 on Netflix.

Next. Outer Banks season 2 cast: Who's joining the show?. dark

FanSided Entertainment staff contributed to this report.