Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

App review by
Christopher Healy, Common Sense Media
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer App Poster Image
Less-scary read-along version of holiday classic shines.

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A lot or a little?

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

Ease of Play

The story is made very easy to follow along with, thanks to the highlighting of the text as it is spoken.

Violence & Scariness

There are some vaguely scary moments as the Abominable Snow Monster corners the heroes in his cave. But the monster does no more than roar at them. The monster is defeated by a dentist character removing its teeth (only the aftermath of this is shown). The most potentially traumatic part of the original television special -- in which the heroic Yukon Cornelius falls from a cliff and is falsely presumed dead -- has been removed from this retelling of the story.

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this ebook version of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is an abridged retelling of the story that is seen in the classic TV holiday special of the same name. This version retains the sometimes scary (though eventually reformed) monster, but eliminates the part in which you are made to assume that one of the heroes has died. As in the classic story, there are several early moments where Rudolph is teased by his peers, but of course, by the end, they all appreciate him for who he is.

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Is it any good?

The RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER ebook app retains a lot of the feel and spirit of the original holiday special on which it is based. The painted art is nicely reminiscent of the puppet animation in the TV special, and the story is as entertaining and heartfelt as ever. While some fans may think it awful that the story was edited in any way, the one bit that was cut out is the scene that was always the most potentially traumatizing for young kids.

As a read-along app, this one works incredibly well, and it's nice that you can tap parts of the illustrations to see the words describing those things. While there are no extras like games or coloring pages, this is the kind of smooth and beautiful app that reminds us that those bells and whistles aren't always necessary for a great book app. One small nit to pick, though: It would have been nice to hear more of the song.

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For kids who love holidays

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