Cool fantasy-adventure series for grade-schoolers.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Humans and animals work together to solve crises, and communication is a key theme.

Violence & scariness

Very mild fantasy violence: Menacing animals threaten the two human characters when they first arrive in Animalia.

Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Not applicable
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this lighthearted, fast-paced series (which is based on the popular book by Graeme Base) has nothing but good intentions. The central characters work together to save a society in peril, and the show subtly emphasizes the importance of communication and language arts -- from reading and writing to speech and computer proficiency.

Kids say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

What's the story?

Based on the wildly popular children's book by Graeme Base, the CGI-animated series ANIMALIA colorfully brings to life a futuristic fantasy world in which animals talk, wear clothes, and do pretty much everything else humans do. Alex (voiced by Brooke Anderson) and Zoe (Katie Leigh) -- two children who are transported from our present world to Animalia via a magic portal in a library -- arrive in this strange land to find all is not well. The Core, a huge, glowing orb that governs Animalia's stability, is faltering and having potentially harmful effects on Animalia's inhabitants. With help from their new animal friends G'bubu the gorilla (Christopher Hobbs), Iggy the iguana (Robert Mark Klein), and Animalia ruler Livingstone T. Lion (who's reminiscent of The Chronicles of Narnia's Aslan), Alex and Zoe set off on one thrilling adventure after another in a quest to help regulate the Core and restore harmony to Animalia.

Is it any good?


Featuring lively storylines and filled with enough silliness to keep any grade-schooler entertained, Animalia can get a bit loud and frantic at times (from an adult point of view, anyway). That said, it's also designed to appeal to today's smart, sophisticated kids -- the dialogue is unusually witty, and the Animalians' use of ultra-advanced technology and other machinery and everyday objects typically used by humans sets a contemporary tone in a zany fantasy world that children will love exploring. Although this won't be obvious to most kid viewers, the show's central theme is communication, as the Core is what enables Animalia's inhabitants to talk and write like humans; according to the show's producers, each episode strives to emphasize the importance of communication skills such as reading, writing, speech, critical thinking, and computer proficiency.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how the series compares to Base's book. Kids: Have you read Animalia? Did you like it? How is the TV show similar to or different from the book? What other books would you like to see turned into TV shows?

TV details

This review of Animalia was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Parent Written bylamom January 31, 2010

Perfect for a 5 1/2 + boy

My son started watching the show at 5 1/2. He loves it. I think it is the fantasy part that he loves. All these animals who talk, have opinions, feelings.... He especially likes Livingston the Lion (the head of Animalia) and all the problems with the core. He also loves when the animals are silly and tell jokes! There are a few episodes that he says scare him, usually the ones with "The Creeper". We just skip those episodes. My son just turned 6, so maybe he'll want to start watching all the episodes. I love that it's about 20-25 minutes long, and on our PBS station there are no commericals with it. I've watched it with him so many times, that now I'm happy to just put it on and let him watch it by himself, while I make dinner. I've been able to take peices of the Animalia story line and use it in things that happen in his day to explain why one of his friends may have felt hurt, disapointed, mad.... when he just couldn't understand why things weren't going well with his friend.
Adult Written byginnya17 April 9, 2008


I just saw it for the first time today with my nephew. We both liked it alot.
Adult Written byblchris November 7, 2008

Love this show

Our PBS station had this show on for about 6 months. My 6 year old loved this show. However I am not sure that all 6 year olds will get this show with its complex vocabulary. That said, it is entertaining and engaging and it teaches the afore mentioned vocabulary. I am disappointed that our PBS station decided to remove this show and replace it with something else. I hope to find it on DVD.


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Digital Compass