Calico Critters

TV review by
Jenny Nixon, Common Sense Media
Calico Critters TV Poster Image
Cute series is light on story but full of warmth.

Parents say

age 3+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value
Positive Messages

Friends helping friends, family togetherness, and pitching in to help when needed are all featured themes.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The town is full of many different types of animals, but everyone seems to get along.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff

Though they don't expressly advertise the Calico Critters toys for sale, the series is populated by readily available, extremely collectible kid's toys and it's pretty hard to imagine a kid watching this and not wanting to take a trip to the toy store afterward.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Calico Critters is a series from Japan based on a popular toy line by the same name (though they're known as "Sylvanian Families" outside of the U.S.). The toys are tiny, flocked animals wearing clothing, and are highly collectible -- the series only makes them seem cuter and more desirable -- so the biggest challenge here for parents will probably be discouraging their kiddos from begging to own every last toy the company makes. Content is very mild, and most episodes (they actually call them "mini-episodes") tap out at around three minutes.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byDagoldma February 3, 2019

Boy crazy

You may think that because of its fabulously bite-sized episodes, this show was written thoughtfully and common-sensically for young children. Not at all. The e... Continue reading
Parent Written bypeppermint24 January 5, 2019

Calico Critters and Boyfriends?

Storylines include ideal dates, ideal presents, boyfriends...
This was not at all what I expected from Calico Critters. While the characters are adorable and th... Continue reading

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

CALICO CRITTERS is an adorable anime series consisting of 3-minute "mini-episodes" that follow the lighthearted adventures of a happy young bunny named Bell Hopscotch, as well as her various pals and relatives who call Calico Village home sweet home. We meet new friends in each episode, from the peppy, overalls-clad chipmunk Dominic to young Aidan, a cuddly teddy bear who has a troublesome habit of getting into other people's baked goods. Episodes feature town events such as concerts and surprise birthday parties, holidays like Halloween, and some fun dream sequences where fuzzy friends imagine what their future lives will be like. Inspired by the toys that bear the same name, the show is made in a style that almost mimics stop-motion animation, so it appears that the toys are actually moving.

Is it any good?

With each episode calling it quits by the three-minute mark, there's no time to get bored even if the storylines aren't thrilling you (and the visuals are so cute it almost doesn't matter). Calico Critters won't win any awards for screenwriting -- the "adventures" here are slight and fluffy stuff -- but they're innocuous enough, with a mellow tone and super appealing visual style that may be just the ticket for families looking to have some harmless fun in front of the TV. Parent beware, however: the Critters come off so charming and sweet in this series, kids may end up wanting to rush out and bring home more of the toys in real life.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the length of Calico Critters episodes. Would you like to see the gang having longer adventures? What are some fun stories you can imagine these characters being a part of in the future?

  • What did you think of the animation style used for Calico Critters? Did you like the way it looked as though the toys were actually walking and talking, or would these stories have worked better in another style?

  • Families can talk about imagination. Kids: How do you play with your toys? What kinds are your favorite for playing pretend?

TV details

  • Premiere date: November 1, 2018
  • Network: Netflix
  • Genre: Kids' Animation
  • TV rating: TV-Y
  • Available on: Streaming
  • Last updated: September 19, 2019

Our editors recommend

For kids who love animal friends

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

See how we rate

Streaming options powered by JustWatch

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality.

Learn how we rate