Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live. Through reviews, articles and discussions, we want to spark intellectual thought, spiritual growth and a desire to follow the command of Colossians 2:8: "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ."


Family uses Plugged In as a ‘significant compass’

"I am at a loss for words to adequately express how much it means to my husband and me to know that there is an organization like Focus that is rooting for us. Just today I was reading Psalm 37 and thinking about how your ministry provides ways to 'dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.' We have two teenagers and an 8-year-old in our household...Plugged In has become a significant compass for our family. All three of our kids are dedicated to their walk with Christ but they still encounter challenges. Thanks for all of your research and persistence in helping us navigate through stormy waters."

Plugged In helps college student stand-up for his belief

"Thanks for the great job you do in posting movie and television reviews online. I’m a college freshman and I recently had a confrontational disagreement with my English professor regarding an R-rated film. It is her favorite movie and she wanted to show it in class. I went to your Web site to research the film’s content. Although I had not seen the movie myself, I was able to make an educated argument against it based on the concerns you outlined. The prof said that she was impressed by my stand and decided to poll the whole class and give us a choice. We overwhelmingly voted to watch a G-rated movie instead! I’ve learned that I can trust your site and I will be using it a lot in the future.”

Plugged In brings ‘Sanity and Order’ to Non-believer

“Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I find your Plugged In Web site useful and thought-provoking. No one reviews movies like you do. Instead of being judgmental, you put entertainment ‘on trial.’ After presenting the evidence, you allow the jury of your readers to decide for themselves what they should do. In my opinion, you bring sanity and order to the wild world of modern day entertainment. Keep up the good work!”

Mom thinks Plugged In is the ‘BEST Christian media review site’

"Our family doesn't go to the movies until we go online and check out your assessment of a given film. I think this is the BEST Christian media review website that I've found, and I recommend it to my family and friends. Keep up the good work!"


Our hope is that whether you're a parent, youth leader or teen, the information and tools at Plugged In will help you and your family make appropriate media decisions. We are privileged to do the work we do, and are continually thankful for the generosity and support from you, our loyal readers, listeners and friends.

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Album Review

A flare for theatrics has always been Madonna’s calling card. And her 14th studio album since 1983 is no exception. On Madame X, Madonna reinvents herself once again, adding another dramatic layer to her public persona as she builds upon the pop empire she ushered in almost four decades ago.

And as the songs on Madame X stumble along here in various styles (pop, rap, even reggae), we're once again confronted with a jarring blend of sex, drugs and nastiness contrasted with some surprisingly moments of hope.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements


Pro-social Content

More than half of Madame X’s tracks discuss or mention the subject of hope. On "Future" (which features rapper Quavo, a member of Migos), Madonna sings about the brokenhearted finding hope in something beyond themselves: “Hear the broken/Come give hope/Come give life.” She later speaks directly to those who may struggle with suicidal thoughts, saying, “Everyone has a spark/Your future is bright/Don’t turn out the lights.” And “Batuka” encourages strugglers to depend upon each other: “We will stand together.”

A similar sentiment is echoed on the track “Looking for Mercy.” Madonna introspectively states, “I’m looking for, looking for, looking for mercy.” That, of course, begs the question, what did she do to need mercy? The Objectionable Content section will help answer that question.

"God Control" has some problems, as we'll see. But here, Madonna laments a culture that she sees spinning out of control and taking innocent lives down with it: "Blood of innocence, spread everywhere/They say that we need love/But we need more than this." Elsewhere, she exhorts, "We need to wake up." Madonna's righteous indignation at the societal problems she sees is a healthy one, even if some of her responses aren't.

In “Dark Ballet,” Madonna twists through vaguely romantic lines such as, “It’s a beautiful life/But I’m not concerned/It’s a beautiful dream/But a dream is earned.” Then she adds, “I will not renounce my faith in the sweet Lord.” That said, a few moments later …

Objectionable Content

… she sings, “God is on my side, and I’ll be his bride,” the latest expression of the kinds of warped religious ideas that have plagued the Material Girl throughout her career.

More than half of album opener "Medellin" is in Spanish. But problematic references to illicit substances and promiscuous activity are evident in the song and its risqué video, the latter of which features overflowing drinks and a scantily clad, whip-wielding Madonna. Here, she sings, “I felt so naked and alive (Show me)/For once I didn’t have to hide myself (Dice).”

On "God Control," Madonna's frustration with societal ills has resulted in deep cynicism “When they talk reforms, it makes me laugh/They pretend to help, it makes me laugh.” The song’s title also serves as a mocking, tongue-in-cheek allusion to the issue of gun control. More cynicism fills these lines: "Everybody knows the d--n truth/Our nation lied, we've lost respect." The chorus intones opaquely, "We've lost God control." Elsewhere, the Almighty gets oddly paired with porn as Madonna cryptically claims we need "A new democracy/God and pornography."

The rambling “Killers Who Are Partying” reveals Madonna’s concern for a myriad of current social issues. But she also seeks to identify with a number of diverse groups (gays, Muslims, Native Americans) that could easily interpret her references to them as being very insensitive as Madonna appropriates them all for her rhetorical purposes here.

"Crave" (featuring Swae Lee) is probably Madame X’s most "Madonna-sounding" song. And so is its suggestive content: “Cause you’re the one I crave/And my cravings get dangerous.” Swae Lee adds, “You’re down to ride/Ride me like a wave/I gave you a sensation.”

“B--ch I’m Loca” undulates back and forth between English and Spanish with explicit lines such as “I like to be on top, ver como te excitas.” It ends with the extremely vulgar couplet: “Where do you want me to put this?/Um, you can put it inside.”

“I Don’t Search I Find” recounts how Madonna has been searching for meaning her whole life, only to realize all is vanity: “We live between life and death/Waiting to move on/And in the end/We accept it/We shake hands with our fate.”

“Extreme Occident” insists that “life is a circle, life is a circle” highlighting some reincarnation undertones. Across the album, there are also multiple uses of “d-mn,” “b--ch,” and “h-ll.”

Summary Advisory

At this point in her career, Madonna’s musical approach resembles a fast-food drive-thru more than a five-star dine-in restaurant. Madame X pulls together samples from a variety of backgrounds, hoping that one track might offer the new Madonna side you’ve been waiting for.

Over the past four decades, Madonna has had to learn how to morph into a niche artist, one who appropriates various musical trends du jour (as she again does here). Ironically, though, Madame X once again paints a picture of an artist whose core ideas and values don't change a bit, even if her stylistic trappings do. Ultimately, though perhaps understandingly, the album draws too heavily on the spoils of Madonna’s past, failing to blaze a new trail for the Queen of Pop.

In an interview with Today’s Harry Smith, Madonna wore an eye patch that has become a fashion staple of her latest persona: Madame X. Speaking of Madame X, she said, “She sleeps with one eye open, travels through the day with one eye shut. She’s actually been wounded, so she’s covering up.”

But, there’s no covering up the convoluted, at times incoherent, jumble of dysfunctional love, explicit sexual content, and grasping at the straws of hope we find on Madame X.

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles



Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews



Readability Age Range







Debuted at No. 1.

Record Label

Interscope Records




June 14, 2019

On Video

Year Published



Jackson Greer

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Get weekly e-news, Culture Clips & more!