Al Yankovic: When I Grow Up

App review by
Christopher Healy, Common Sense Media
Al Yankovic: When I Grow Up App Poster Image
Good, silly fun with wacky interactive bits and mini-games.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Ease of Play

There shouldn't be any problems with the controls while reading the story; the controls on one of the mini-games ("Gorilla Masseuse") feels a bit too finicky for young kids.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff

When listing all the varied occupations he might have, the narrator tosses in "master debater." Its use is entirely innocent in context, but there's an obvious pun that older readers may pick up on.

Language
Consumerism

There are links to both the publisher's and author's sites.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Al Yankovic: When I Grow Up is a fun, whimsical interactive storybook about a boy who regales his classmates with a slew of wild and imaginative ideas for future occupations (foot model, chocolate mousse sculptor, tarantula shaver, etc.). Kids can read along with the narration, but the text is not highlighted as it is spoken. There are multiple hidden hotspots on each page, which kids can discover to trigger secret animations. In addition, there are three arcade-style mini-games (with two more promised to come in the future).

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Is it any good?

It's nice to have the author provide his own narration for AL YANKOVIC: WHEN I GROW UP. His over-the-top enthusiasm fits the absurdly silly text perfectly. The interactive bits are fun -- rolling pencils, walking shoes, and flying papers, and even a chance to write your name on classroom decorations -- and can be challenging to find (a good or bad thing, depending on how you look at it). The mini-games are flat-out goofy (especially "Tarantula Shaver"), but they're fun bonuses, even if the controls on "Gorilla Masseuse" feel a bit touchy. The "master debater" line is questionable, but will be overlooked by most kids. And it would have been nice to have the text highlighted. But this is still a pretty great book app as it is.

App details

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