Taboo is a documentary television series that premiered in 2002 on the National Geographic Channel. The program is an educational look into "taboo" rituals and traditions practiced in some societies, yet forbidden and illegal in others.Each hour long episode details a specific topic, such as marriage or initiation rituals, and explores how such topics are viewed throughout the world. Taboo generally focuses on the most misunderstood, despised, or disagreed-upon activities, jobs, and roles.
Where to Watch Taboo
Where to stream every episode from all 10 seasons of Taboo. Filter these episodes by what's available to watch free or on your streaming services using the tabs above.
Season 1Rent or Buy
S01 E01Sep 30, 2002
Food Sep 30, 2002 Savor the forbidden taste off taboo meals from around the globe, some hilarious others deadly serious. Find out why eating habits--like language--are a key definer of culture.
S01 E02Oct 7, 2002
Healers Oct 7, 2002 Go beyond science to examine the mysterious powers of healers who derive their strength from what other cultures may consider illegitimate or unproven.
S01 E03Oct 14, 2002
Tattoo Oct 14, 2002 Explore the art of tattoos from the deadly serious markings of headhunters to bloody scarification rituals in Africa, and on to Western artists who use their bodies as a canvas.
S01 E04Oct 21, 2002
Voodoo Oct 21, 2002 Experience the dark side with religion's ultimate outcast. Trace how voodoo has grown in diversity and become taboo, even in cultures where it is widely practiced.
S01 E05Oct 28, 2002
Witchcraft Oct 28, 2002 Take a secret look at our darkest ritual - black magic. Explore the nature of power itself, and how it both elevates and corrupts our species.
S01 E06Nov 4, 2002
Marriage Nov 4, 2002 Attend and elaborate--yet illegal--ceremony in India, watch as one man's two wives prepare him for a third bride, and witness same-sex partners exchange vows in Europe.
Season 2Rent or Buy
S02 E01Oct 6, 2003
Justice Oct 6, 2003 Systems of justice in different cultures are examined. Included: tribal justice in the West African nation of Togo and revenge killings in Albania.
S02 E02Oct 13, 2003
Delicacies Oct 13, 2003 In Iceland's traditional Thorrablot celebration in February, a chef prepares rotting shark meat, goat's head and other hard to swallow dishes for their traditional buffet. And in India, an Anglo-indian lady prepares a special luncheon that features a goat foetus stew called kutti pi. In Togo, the cameras follow hunters out into the hot wilderness to hunt a rat to be used in a stew and voodoo ritual. And finally in Taiwan, a chef prepares bull's penis soup to boost his diner's virility.
S02 E03Oct 20, 2003
Creature Cures Oct 20, 2003 Unusual medical procedures include bee stings for arthritis; putting maggots in open wounds; medicine made from baboon claws; therapy with leeches.
S02 E04Nov 3, 2003
After Death Nov 3, 2003 Death ceremonies from around the world are examined. Included: the Aghori sect in India embraces corpses in an effort to break the cycle of reincarnation; in Taiwan, bones are exhumed and cleaned before being reburied. Also: embalming bodies in the U.S.
S02 E05Nov 10, 2003
Body Perfect Nov 10, 2003 On the island off the coast of Indonesian Sumatra, the wife of the Mentawi tribe chieften, undergoes a teeth filing ritual to beautify herself. Her teeth are sharpen with a machete. In Los Angeles, California, Jay wants to have buttock implants, and undergoes a 2 hour long surgery by Dr. Sinclair. Next, a man receives eye lifting surgery by Dr. Griffin to improve his looks. And in Chongqing, China, a short man has the bones in his legs broken, stretched, then healed to make himself taller. The 'bone breaking' and 'leg stretching' procedure is a painful and lengthy process and the recovery takes years.
S02 E06Dec 8, 2003
Sacred Pain Dec 8, 2003 Taboo examines how cultures sometimes use pain in religious rites including tongue boring in Nepal, self stabbing and possession rites in Indonesia, and extreme body piercing and self-mutilation in Thailand.
Season 3Rent or Buy
S03 E01Jun 14, 2004
Outcasts Jun 14, 2004 Social pariahs are observed in a variety of cultures, including a village in Ghana where all the residents are witches banished from their home villages; lepers in Bangalore; gypsies in Romania; and a man who has undergone extreme plastic surgery.
S03 E02Jun 30, 2004
Extreme Living Jun 30, 2004 Included: a priest in India and his wife who live with thousands of rats in a temple. Also: Christmas is celebrated in a Florida nudist resort; Filipinos sleep in graveyards and share their homes with corpses.
S03 E03Jul 7, 2004
Spirit Worlds Jul 7, 2004 A look at the spirit world, and how it's represented in different cultures. Included: The Hindu festival of Thaipusam in Malaysia, where participants pierce themselves with steel skewers and hooks. Also: an exorcism in India; Santeria rituals in Cuba.
S03 E04Jul 14, 2004
Extreme Cuisine Jul 14, 2004 Unusual cuisine includes live octopus; bat with sago grubs; boiled and pickled duck fetus in the egg; tarantula tempura with crackling cockroach.
S03 E05Jul 21, 2004
Extreme Childhood Jul 21, 2004 An 8-year-old trains as a boxer in Thailand; a 4-year-old becomes a virgin goddess in Nepal; a 13-year-old plants dynamite in Bolivian mines.
S03 E06Jul 28, 2004
Body Cutters Jul 28, 2004 Body modifications include metal chest implants, tongue splitting, scarification and suspension on fishing hooks.
S03 E07Aug 4, 2004
Body Art Aug 4, 2004 Tattooing around the world. Included: a tattoo festival in Thailand; a young girl undergoes a painful full facial tattoo in Papua New Guinea; criminal record tattoos in Russia.
Season 4Tubi TV
S04 E01Aug 5, 2007
Initiation Rituals Aug 5, 2007 Different cultures' initiation rituals. Included: a Brazilian tribe's bullet-ant glove; an urban Australian subculture's practice of suspension from fishhooks.
S04 E02Aug 5, 2007
Skin Deep Aug 5, 2007 Spotlighting the Latmul tribe of Papua New Guinea and a coming-of-age ritual that requires teenage boys to have their skin repeatedly cut so that it resembles crocodile skin. Also: Maori tattoos.
S04 E03Aug 8, 2007
Sexual Identity Aug 8, 2007 Profiling people who push gender boundaries. Included: transsexuals in San Francisco; Thai katoey or “ladyboys”; Samoan fa'afafine.
S04 E04Aug 15, 2007
Signs of Identity Aug 15, 2007 Profiling young women of Ethiopia's Hamar tribe who voluntarily submit to brutal beatings to show loyalty to male relatives as they participate in a coming-of-age ceremony. Also: the Japanese horimono; branding.
S04 E05Aug 22, 2007
Proving Ground Aug 22, 2007 How do men prove their manhood? Often, by enduring pain. In an American Fight Club, successful, educated males engage in physical combat to test their manhood. Hundreds of men taking part in a time-honored event known as the Pasola charge toward each other on horseback, hurling spears. Young men of the Fulani tribe must whip an opponent twice during a large public demonstration, then be whipped.
S04 E06Aug 29, 2007
Body Modification Aug 29, 2007 Why would people choose to radically reshape their bodies? Some women wear heavy brass rings that push down on their collarbones, giving the appearance of elongated necks, a sign of beauty. Elsewhere, an estimated one in four girls undergo a practice known as breast ironing. See how some men—for vanity’s sake—are augmenting their bodies through plastic surgery.
S04 E07Sep 5, 2007
Nudity Sep 5, 2007 For some, shedding clothes is an act of expression, of liberation, even a means of worship. Wiccan witches perform rituals in the nude, or “skyclad,” to express their truest form and bring themselves closer to the natural world. Some devout Christians worship together naked in the name of the Lord. In a unique festival, one man is chosen to be the spirit man and must run naked to the shrine.
Season 5Tubi TV
S05 E01Aug 6, 2008
Touching Death Aug 6, 2008 Profiling individuals whose jobs entail handling human remains in Manila; Los Angeles; and Bangkok.
S05 E02Aug 6, 2008
Extreme Kids Aug 6, 2008 "Extreme Kids" explores child kickboxing matches in Thailand and a self-mutilation ritual for Shi'a Muslims in India.
S05 E03Aug 13, 2008
Supreme Devotion Aug 13, 2008 A look at religions that measure devotion by physical suffering.
S05 E04Aug 20, 2008
Body Extremes Aug 20, 2008 A thriving black market for human organs is examined in the Philippines. Also: a look at an intimate bond between humans and pigs in Papua New Guinea; an Australian health therapist who uses urine as a topical medicine is profiled.
S05 E05Aug 27, 2008
Extreme Healing Aug 27, 2008 Exploring cultures where people entrust their health to faith rather than modern medicine in Venezuela, Arizona and the Philippines.
S05 E06Sep 3, 2008
Trial by Fire Sep 3, 2008 Dangerous initiation rituals are spotlighted. Included: a fire dance in Papua New Guinea; riding untamed bulls in India.
S05 E07Sep 10, 2008
Extreme Eats Sep 10, 2008 Spotlighting extreme cuisine, from duck embryos to spiders.
Season 6Tubi TV
S06 E01Jan 17, 2010
Prostitution Jan 17, 2010 Profiling sex workers in Bangladesh, Sydney, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands and Washington, D.C.
S06 E02Jan 20, 2010
Fat Jan 20, 2010 In much of the West thin is beautiful, and fat is taboo. But a new health epidemic is sweeping the planet: obesity. We follow the story of Alan, who at 650 pounds is imprisoned in his own bedroom. In Mauritania mothers risk the health of their daughters by force-feeding them to fatten them for marriage. In the U.S.A., Deidra, a 450 pound model is fat, proud and happy. And 24 “plus size” women push the ideals of beauty when they compete in the Miss Plus America Pageant.
S06 E03Jan 27, 2010
Misfits Jan 27, 2010 Misfits are people who live outside of their cultural norms. Some are born into that situation, while others seek it. Meet Dave, an Australian man convinced his right leg didn't belong on his body, so he deliberately froze it beyond recovery, forcing doctors to amputate. In Bangladesh, river nomads make their living with snake charming and traditional healing. Viewed as sorcerers and sham artists by many, they are shunned and often not welcome on land.
S06 E04Feb 3, 2010
Narcotics Feb 3, 2010 Throughout human history, narcotics have been used as medicine and for pleasure, but those who use them can be stigmatized. When drug use is legal or accepted, is it still taboo? More than a century ago, Queen Victoria is said to have used marijuana to alleviate cramps. Today, patients in California are smoking it to relieve pain and other chronic symptoms. Deep in the Brazilian Amazon, a congregation gathers to drink a powerful hallucinogenic drug. Even children participate in the ritual.
S06 E05Feb 10, 2010
Strange Love Feb 10, 2010 Human relationships can bring safety, security and love - but sometimes they can also be taboo. Witness a real-life "Lars and the Real Girl" relationship, when a man in the United States falls in love with a sex doll. In Australia, meet a couple who stay faithful by having sex with strangers. In poverty-stricken Nepal, innocence is lost when a 7-year-old child is sold as a bride. Then, in the United Kingdom, a man defies one of his country's strictest taboos by marrying seven women.
S06 E06Feb 17, 2010
Beyond the Grave Feb 17, 2010 In an effort to cope with death, we shroud it in ritual and surround it with taboos. And what one culture sees as a normal way to deal with the dead, for another might be forbidden. In Nepal, a body is burned beside a sacred river. In America, a corpse is beautified for an open casket funeral. In Germany, human bodies are sometimes put on public display.
Season 7Tubi TV
S07 E01May 2, 2011
Beauty May 2, 2011 In a youth-obsessed Western culture, some feel the need to obsessively diet, exercise and partake of beauty treatments or plastic surgery. However, some have taken these to fatal extremes. In Paris, we'll meet a young model with extreme anorexia, so fixated on her weight that at 55 pounds she died from the disease. In Texas, a woman feels the need to continually increase her breast size, all the way to a triple K cup.
S07 E02May 2, 2011
Fantasy Lives May 2, 2011 People obsessed with their fantasy lives are profiled. Included: a grown man in California pretending he's a baby; a Japanese kickboxer dressing up as animated characters in the ring; a Florida father engaging in cybersex in his spare time.
S07 E03May 9, 2011
Addiction May 9, 2011 Delve into the lives of those haunted by addiction. Meet a 15-year-old South Korean boy in rehab because he’s hooked on video games. It’s an addiction shared by millions of Koreans, even spurring the government to intervene with a specialized rehab facility. In California, a woman is addicted to anonymous sex meeting countless partners in parking lots to satisfy her insatiable appetite.
S07 E04May 16, 2011
Hoarders May 16, 2011 In every city, there are hoarders. A Florida woman shares her house with nearly 400 pigs, as they continue to multiply. In Pennsylvania, a man's obsession with vinyl records has driven him to collect around two million records, with thousands more purchased every month. In England, we meet a male hoarder whose apartment is filled with clutter piled three feet high, and a female hoarder forced out of her home due to her inability to throw items away.
S07 E05May 23, 2011
Prison Love May 23, 2011 Love behind bars with some of the most dangerous criminals on earth. In Texas, an inmate in solitary confinement gets married with the help of a radio host as surrogate groom, while the prisoner listens over the radio. In California, a pregnant woman has a white wedding at the county jail, with a glass wall separating the couple as they say their vows. In Tennessee, a man serving life for murder marries a woman he met over the Internet, but the marriage has little hope of being consummated.
S07 E06Jun 12, 2011
Forbidden Love Jun 12, 2011 Love can come in many different and bizarre forms. In Washington State, we meet a man with objectum sexual, who has an emotional, romantic and often sexual attraction to his car, named Vanilla. In Germany, we'll introduce you to the founder of the Objectum Sexual International Forum, who is in a loving relationship with the Berlin Wall. And we'll meet a married couple in California whose concept of monogamy has an odd twist she works as a professional sex surrogate.
Season 8Rent or Buy
S08 E01Jan 3, 2012
Secret Lives Jan 3, 2012 Do we really know who our co-workers, loved ones, and friends are? Maybe not as well as we think. Taboo opens a window into the lives of individuals leading a double life with surprising secrets.
S08 E02Jan 10, 2012
Odd Couples Jan 10, 2012 Unconventional relationships are the focus. Included: a three-way marriage; a woman who dates a man nearly three times her height; a gay man who's married to a woman.
S08 E03Jan 17, 2012
Extreme Fighting Jan 17, 2012 "Extreme Fighting" looks at different cultures' interpretations of acceptable violence.
Season 9Rent or Buy
S09 E01Jun 17, 2012
Living with the Dead Jun 17, 2012 Though many people are disturbed by the sight of dead bodies, there are those who deal with death as a matter of course—for occupational, cultural, and sometimes questionable reasons.
S09 E02Jun 24, 2012
Strange Behavior Jun 24, 2012 People with uncontrollable medical conditions share their stories. Included: a father whose Tourette's syndrome makes him an outcast; a 17-year-old stigmatized by self-harm.
S09 E03Jul 1, 2012
Booze Jul 1, 2012 It's mankind's oldest intoxicant. But alcohol is also the drug that kills more people than any other. From Labor Day weekend parties in Arizona to binge-drinking resorts in Spain, alcohol shapes the lives of those who drink it in ways that can be heart-breaking and deadly.
S09 E04Jul 8, 2012
Teen Sex Jul 8, 2012 Whether we like it or not, teenagers are having sex. How their families – and their societies – deal with the sexual development of young teens, in particular, their daughters, varies wildly according to their culture and beliefs.
S09 E05Jul 15, 2012
Extreme Collectors Jul 15, 2012 Since ancient times, humans have expressed their passions and their personalities through their collections. But when a collection crosses the line from passion to obsession, ignoring legal, moral and taste boundaries, then it becomes taboo.
S09 E06Jul 22, 2012
Ugly Jul 22, 2012 Taboo shines a light on where the beauty/ugly dichotomy originates from, and what it means to be deemed “ugly” in a society that scorns it.
S10 E01Jun 4, 2013
Secret Passions Jun 4, 2013 The Season 9 premiere includes reports of a Pittsburgh man who believes he's a dog, a pair of Satanists in California and a dominatrix who trains ponies.
S10 E02Jun 11, 2013
Strange Bonds Jun 11, 2013
S10 E03Jun 18, 2013
Odd Jobs Jun 18, 2013
S10 E04Jun 25, 2013
Forever Young Jun 25, 2013
S10 E05Jul 2, 2013
Strange Obsessions Jul 2, 2013
S10 E06Jul 9, 2013
Inked, Pierced & Hooked Jul 9, 2013
S10 E07Jul 16, 2013
Extreme Obesity Jul 16, 2013