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Parents' Guide to

American Icons

By Joly Herman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 9+

Short documentary bios stress cleverness, lack diversity.

TV Max Educational 1999
American Icons Poster Image

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Lacking in diversity and depth, this documentary series looks at the motivation behind a handful of American historical figures. American Icons isn't a Ken Burns series, nor does it try to be. The short biopics look at what made these icons great, and it explores that technique. Mark Twain knew how to spin a good sound bite, for example. FDR used his patience and perseverance to strategically move the public. Babe Ruth shined like the sun when he was given attention.

Parents can whet their kids' appetite by exploring these fast-paced documentaries about influential people. But the absence of diversity among the icons, and the singular focus about their rise to power, causes this series to fall short of the storytelling potential inherent in the subject matter.

TV Details

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