Olivia Acts Out

App review by
Christopher Healy, Common Sense Media
Olivia Acts Out App Poster Image
Decent interactive book with some nice animations built in.

Parents say

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Kids say

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A lot or a little?

Parents' guide to what's in this app.

Ease of play

The app is generally simple to use, though sometimes it seems to take more than one swipe to make a page turn. There are lots of interactive hotspots, but they're not always clearly marked -- kids have to explore to find most of them.

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Language
Consumerism

The app is based on an animated television series, which is in itself based on a book series. From the app's home page, kids can watch the opening title sequence of the TV show.

Drinking, drugs & smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Olivia Acts Out is an interactive book based on an episode of the Olivia TV series. In the story, Olivia is upset about her small role in the school play and jealous of the girl who gets the lead. The moral is subtle, as Olivia learns to enjoy her part for what it is, but she still ends up adding her own new elements to her part and (while this is not stated) she upstages the rest of the kids. It can provide some good talking points for parents and kids, though.

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Is it any good?

OLIVIA ACTS OUT is a decent storybook for fans of the TV show, and its story definitely stays true to the rambunctious Olivia character. Kids will be encouraged to explore each scene to find all the hidden animations (which look very smooth and vivid, by the way). And they can read along with the narration, though it would have been nicer to have the text highlighted as it is spoken. The book has a "there are no small parts, only small actors" moral to it, but the way Olivia upstages her classmates at the end isn't exactly stellar role-modeling.

App details

  • Device: iPad
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release date: June 20, 2011
  • Category: Books
  • Size: 89.70 MB
  • Publisher: Polin8, LLC
  • Version: 1.0.1
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 3.2 or later

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