A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this music.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that the subject matter of the lyrics is mostly benign and at times even positive. However, there are some mature lyrics about love and the powerful desire to fit in and be fashionable. The music is also more mature than most kids' fare -- similar to Destiny's Child or some of Prince's arrangements.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Matthew Gerrard and Robbie Neil, the co-writers and producers of GENIE MAGIC, are enjoying quite a run of success. Their High School Musical, another Disney project, is the talk of the town among many tweens in middle schools. The Bratz product line -- an ever-growing collection of super-fashionable hip-hop diva dolls and an accompanying TV show -- is focused on younger children, though, so parents need to be vigilant in determining if the messages sent by the Bratz pack are appropriate for their kids -- for example, lyrics of "The Real You" ("I wanna be the one to make you happy/So let me show you how/I'll forever be faithful and true...let me show you how I feel") seem a bit suggestive.
Is it any good?
The CD delivers some bright moments. The music is very danceable, and songs such as "Rollin" include positive messages like "Cruisin', choosin', Where I wanna be/Trouble comin' never stoppin' me/Groovin', movin' and I feel like/ If I had wings then I could fly/ Never givin' in, no matter what comes." The vocalist, Lauren Evans, is superb and some songs are quite enjoyable. The problem remains, however, that the Bratz are first and foremost products with an embedded message: Be cool and be fashionable. This may not be for every family.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the Bratz credos of always being fashionable as well as their positive message of self-empowerment. Can a girl look amazing and fit in with the crowd while also maintaining meaningful friendships and a healthy sense of self-esteem? Or are these mixed messages?