AG Life

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
AG Life TV Poster Image
Empowering American Girl shorts celebrate individuality.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Educational Value

Many segments are designed to teach audience members something, such as how to make a simple recipe for flavored hot chocolate, how to upcycle an existing wardrobe for a new look, or how to make and achieve goals for saving money. The content just scratches the surface on much of these topics, but it's enough to give kids a starting point in each case. 

Positive Messages

Lots of empowering sentiments and examples for girls, from decorated amateur athletes to kids who use their hobbies to give back to their communities. No matter the content, the goal is to encourage girls to identify what makes them special and take pride in it. At the same time, there's a larger message that celebrates factors that unify girls. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

The series spotlights girls whose talent, resilience, and kindness make them excellent role models. Each one makes a difference in a way that will inspire those who watch and may light a fire in them to use what they know to help others. 

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

The series is a digital project of American Girl, an extensive line of dolls, accessories, clothing, and other products geared toward girls. Although American Girl merchandise isn't central to the episodes, the hosts often encourage viewers to subscribe to the YouTube channel, "like" their favorite segments, and send in comments to suggest topics or give feedback on the episode. A few pop culture references, such as Katniss Everdeen.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that AG Life is a Web series from doll manufacturer American Girl, but the content never references any products by name or image. Instead, this short-form show features instructional segments about crafting, fashion and hairstyles, foodie tips, and money awareness. It also spotlights girls whose accomplishments and passions make them great role models, particularly in community service. Common themes encourage responsibility, strong self-esteem, and benevolence. The hostesses encourage viewers to subscribe to the show's YouTube channel and respond to questions posed during each episode, so parents may want to remind kids about their family rules for Internet use. 

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What's the story?

AG LIFE is a short-form digital lifestyle series from American Girl that explores many aspects of being a girl. Five hosts introduce stories that relate to the respective episode's theme, from Halloween fun to thankfulness to the generally awesome qualities of being a girl. Recurring segments teach viewers about fashion, crafts, basic cooking skills, and money sense. The show also includes features of real-life girls doing great things such as excelling in sports and performing charity work.

Is it any good?

This minutes-long Web show feels much like a multidimensional version of the American Girl magazine and delivers wonderful messages about self-esteem to young girls. Every segment encourages girls to embrace what makes them special and to march to the beat of their own drums. Even those stories that instruct specific projects (using an outgrown sweater to make fashion accessories, for instance) remind viewers to make them their own by adding their unique touches. Person-on-the-street polls, style tips, craft how-to's, and many moments that celebrate being a girl round out this fast-paced series.

Despite its association with the American Girl conglomeration, the show doesn't reference AG products, but it does remind viewers multiple times to correspond with the crew through comments and likes on its YouTube channel. If nothing else, it's a great reason to discuss Internet safety with your kids. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about what, if any, influence TV shows have on our likes and dislikes. Kids: If you enjoy a certain show, are you inclined to want clothing or accessories with the characters' images on them? Did you see or hear any references to American Girl products in this show? 

  • Why is it important to have role models to whom you can relate? How does having someone to look up to inspire you to excel? Which hobbies or other pursuits interest you enough to devote time to them? 

  • What facts unify people all over the world? Conversely, how are we different based on where and how we live? Does this show have very broad appeal, or is its target audience fairly small? What can you learn from it? 

TV details

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