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Should Christians Allow Their Kids to Watch Cuphead?

February 23, 2022

The #1 Kids Show on Netflix right now is a cartoon based on a popular video game of the same name: Cuphead. The show seems innocent enough, but many Christians, especially Christian parents are banning the show from their homes because of the villain of the show: The Devil himself.

Cuphead is rated TV-Y7, which recommends the show for children at least 7 years old. The show follows the adventures of Cuphead and Mugman after they make a deal with the devil at a carnival and lose, and the devil is now trying to collect their souls. For those unfamiliar, here is a short trailer:

Heres the tricky part: Should Christians be in support of a show that features the devil as one of the main characters?

It’s important to note that the show makes it very clear: The devil is BAD, and should be avoided. While they make him out to be more inept and dumb than cunning and smart, they don’t shy away from the fact that satan is lurking around every corner, looking for every opportunity to take advantage of the brothers.

While Christians agree that the devil is bad, the question remains: Is it beneficial to children’s faith to watch a show like this? Many times we look to websites, movie reviewers, or influencers to make those decisions for us, when our moral authority shouldn’t be coming from others, we need to seek wisdom and guidance from God Himself:

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.

James 1:5

This isn’t to say we shouldn’t look towards others for guidance, just be cautious about where you look. You’ll likely be able to find a Christian blog that tells you to ban Cuphead from your home forever. You’ll also likely be able to find a blog that tells you the show is perfectly fine and you have nothing to worry about. The point is, whatever answer you’re hoping to find, you’ll find it, so we need to look to God for wisdom and guidance.

The show is a parody of early 1930’s cartoons, so the “violence” is more in line with Tom and Jerry, big wacky gestures with no lasting consequences. The only more conservative “questionable” material comes in episode 7 when a few characters are assumed to be drunk, and in an episode featuring more “silly” ghosts and a haunted house.

Here’s where we need to step in as Christian parents: Discernment. Yes, the show features many Biblical values like forgiveness, love, and overcoming hardships, but we also need to recognize the confusion that may arise if our children don’t have a Biblical understanding of good and evil, or are easily affected by this type of imagery or storyline.

If you do decide to let your children watch Cuphead, this can be a blessing of an opportunity to start a dialogue about evil, and what they understand from the Bible. Does the Bible describe the devil in ways that are similar to Cuphead’s portrayal? Have they ever been scared of the devil? How do we find assurance of our safety through Christ?

You may feel convicted that your family shouldn’t engage with a show like this, but you also may see it as a great opportunity to start deep dialogue. Whatever your decision, make sure it aligns in scripture and in Christ’s teachings.

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