Dan and Phil Go Outside

Book review by
Andrea Beach, Common Sense Media
Dan and Phil Go Outside Book Poster Image
Fans will love YouTubers' book about a show about a book.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Brief information about how a traveling theatrical show is put together from planning, designing, rehearsing, and touring from one city to another. Points of interest, popular tourist destinations, and brief cultural insight into many North American cities. What daily life is like on an extended tour.

Positive Messages

Despite differences, everyone is welcome to be a part of the Dan and Phil community, an online place to share in the fun. Live shows allow you to share emotions with real people, all at the same time, all together, and that's a very special and powerful thing. It takes a lot of hard work to put on a show and take it on the road, so it helps a lot if your crew are people you enjoy spending time with.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Making people happy, especially helping them through hard times, is what keep Dan and Phil going. They make putting on their live show look relatively easy and like a lot of fun, but they do mention the hard work and long hours that went into it. They express a lot of admiration of and thanks for the work and support of their production crew. They also express deep gratitude to their fans, whose feedback and personal stories are what keep them going. They're enthusiastically open to new people, places, and experiences.

Violence

A couple of mentions of having things like rocks and beer cans thrown at them in the past.

Sex

Nipples mentioned a couple of times, and a black bar blocks the mermaid's chest in a photo of the original Starbucks logo. Trees referred to as sexy.

Language

"Pee," "poo," and "GTFO."

Consumerism

Part of YouTubers danisnotonfire and AmazingPhil's media juggernaut that as of this writing includes YouTube and other social media followers in the millions, two best-selling books, and a touring theatrical production (with plenty of merchandise available for purchase at the shows) based on their first book. Several mentions that a documentary about the show was filmed, and the documentary is now available on YouTube. This particular book itself infrequently mentions several food and beverage products as well as restaurant chains, and a few photos show specific products, such as Big Gulps.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A couple of photos in a bar show Dan holding a cocktail. Dan writes, "Just give me a drink and I'll get through," an overwhelming task.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Dan and Phil Go Outside is a travel journal that looks like a yearbook and documents the touring theatrical production of popular British YouTubers Dan Howell (danisnotonfire) and Phil Lester (AmazingPhil). The show is based on their best-selling first book, The Amazing Book Is Not on Fire: The World of Dan and Phil. There's almost no iffy content (nipples are mentioned a couple of times), but it's a good starting point for talking with kids about how and why popular YouTube personalities are branching out into other media. (As of this writing, Dan and Phil have a best-selling book, a touring theatrical production based on the book, a documentary of the theatrical production, and now this best-seller about the tour.) Both men are good role models and present positive messages about hard work, gratitude, enthusiastically engaging with the real world, and creating a safe community where their fans can find something as simple as a laugh or as important as a support network for knowing they're not alone.

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What's the story?

DAN AND PHIL GO OUTSIDE tells how popular British YouTubers Dan Howell (danisnotonfire) and Phil Lester (AmazingPhil) turned their best-selling The Amazing Book Is Not on Fire into a touring theatrical production, The Amazing Tour Is Not on Fire. It documents some of the highlights of the tour itself (especially as they crisscrossed America), as well as memorable places and pancakes, and it provides fans with a behind-the-scenes look at how it was all accomplished.

Is it any good?

Part photo album, part travel journal, part yearbook, and all in good fun, this engaging and lively look at putting a large-scale show on tour will delight fans of the popular British YouTubers. The charm and humor that have made Dan Howell and Phil Lester such internet and social media sensations is well on display through the colorful pictures, dynamic page layouts, and conversational caption style that makes readers feel like they're hanging out on the sofa with them as they look back on their big tour.

All that being said, Dan and Phil Go Outside is really for fans only, who’ll love looking behind the scenes, getting insider scoops, learning how much they’re appreciated, and seeing Dan and Phil’s take on many different places from Scotland to Seattle. The wholesome fun is fine for tweens and up, and the millions who follow their antics will revel in the latest offering from their heroes.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why Dan and Phil Go Outside was written and put together. Do you agree with Dan that The Amazing Tour Is Not on Fire deserves a monument of its own? What do you think about the money they made from selling all those tickets, merchandise, and copies of the book?

  • What do you think going on a months-long tour would be like? Do Dan and Phil mention any downsides? What do you think they liked best about it?

  • Did you see the show? Does the book make you want to see it or see it again? Why?

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