There is a wealth of hot garbage when it comes to kids shows. With YouTube and streaming networks coming online faster than we can keep up, it seems any little animation studio anywhere wants to monetize the next cartoon, no matter how terrible the end product might be. I won’t name names, but as the mother of a sometimes non-discerning 4-year-old, I can attest to how low this bar has been. We’ve had many difficult conversations, and I’ve caved more than once to nightmare inducing color schemes and horrendous story lines.
No so with Puffin Rock. And thank goodness for that.
Puffin Rock’s title alone sounds like something delightful, and I’m happy to report that it is. In every sense of the imagination. It’s a show about an Irish puffin family–as you do–and is narrated by Chris O’Dowd with a dry yet somehow also whimsical air. The main characters are Oona, the eldest sister in the family, and Baba, her little chicklet brother. They have a score of little friends, including a pygmy shrew and a fox. And each adventure is a chance to learn about the animals and landscape of Northern Ireland.
All along the way we learn a great deal about puffins, but also about the world around them. The episodes have a lovely sense of tranquility about them, so even high stress moments–like when Baba wanders away to get a shiny shell and the mean seagulls are after it, too–don’t seem so harsh. The animation style is absolutely lovely, complimenting the show’s themes with a cool color set and design.
It’s quickly become a family favorite, even for the almost 10-year-old, though he’ll never admit it. It’s a show we can all watch together and enjoy without a worry. And we even learn something along the way.
Natania is a member of the Netflix Stream Team.
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