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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Jam Van is a YouTube Original that showcases major American cities and teaches important life lessons. Combining live action with a mixture of boldly colorful animation styles, the show follows best friends Lamb (voiced by Pete Lee) and Anne the Alligator (voiced by Nicole Byer) as they jam across the country, exploring the U.S. and solving problems with the help of celebrities like Lin-Manuel Miranda, Brandi Carlile, and Daveed Diggs. The show has positive messages around teamwork, different kinds of families, and what you can learn through travel and adventure.
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What's the Story?
In JAM VAN, Lamb and Anne the Alligator venture across the country. Gassed up in the Jam Van, and with the help of Grumpy GPS, they learn about the landmarks and neighborhoods in major American cities. In each episode, they also face a personal mission that pushes them to work together, think critically, and rely on the help of famous creatives. Ultimately, they learn lessons about the importance of family, the significance of home, and the power they possess within.
Is It Any Good?
Upbeat and colorful, this YouTube Original is sure to hook viewers of all ages. Jam Van is educational but equally fun, and the roughly 10-minute episodes make for engaging screen time for little ones that parents won't feel guilty about. Parents will also appreciate the life lessons, like "Families come in all shapes and sizes" and "Teamwork makes the dream work," that accompany the exploration of American cities. With wide-ranging celebrities like Lin-Manuel Miranda and Brandi Carlisle, there's music for the whole family to enjoy.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about diversity in Jam Van. How does the show highlight variety across American cities? How does the show promote differences in musical styles?
What makes Lamb and Anne the Alligator realistic characters? Which character can you relate to? Why?
Which cities featured on Jam Van have you visited before? Which ones would you like to visit? What other cities should be featured on the show?
- Premiere date: January 19, 2023
- Cast: Nicole Byer, Pete Lee
- Network: YouTube
- Genre: Kids' Animation
- Topics: Adventures, Friendship, Music and Sing-Along
- Character Strengths: Teamwork
- TV rating: NR
- Award: Common Sense Selection
- Last updated: January 31, 2023
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