What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the title character is a barbarian who has bulging muscles but is afraid of his own shadow. The female characters are stereotyped as self-absorbed and vicious. The entire series is filled with awkward jokes, chaotic plotlines, and unoriginal animation.
What's the story?
Despite his foreboding bod, DAVE THE BARBARIAN (voiced by Danny Cooksey) prefers to settle disputes with discussion, do origami and perfect his gourmet cooking. Dave is portrayed as wimpy because of his preference for talking over fighting and for his fear of monsters, rampaging giant muffins, and Chuckles the Pig (Dave's arch enemy). He and his sisters, Candy (Erica Luttrell) and Fang (Tress MacNeille), are left in charge of their Middle Ages castle while their parents are off battling evil. Princess Candy, the oldest and therefore crowned princess, would much rather hang out at the mall or chase a prince from a nearby kingdom. Fang is the youngest sister, who is continually compared to a monkey and finds great pleasure in smashing things. Other characters include the sorcerer Uncle Oswidge (Kevin Michael Richardson), enchanted sword Lula (Estelle Harris), and pet dragon Faffy (Frank Welker).
Is it any good?
The medieval backdrop carries its own mystique and offers a chance for interesting storylines and characters. But unfortunately, Dave the Barbarian is nonsensical and chaotic. The animation jumps around quickly, making it hard for kids to think twice about what's happening. There are certainly better quality choices for kids to relax, have some down time, and share a giggle.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about what their kids think about the mixed message the show sends -- that settling disputes with discussion is better than using violence, all the while portraying Dave as a wimp for not fighting. Are the female characters role models in any way?