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Dynasties

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
Dynasties TV Poster Image
Visually stunning docu about struggling animal families.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Teaches lessons about different animals and their survival habits. 

Positive Messages

It underscores the beauty of nature, and the importance of protecting it. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

David Attenborough is a naturalist who is committed to highlighting the beauty of nature, and the importance of protecting it. 

Violence & Scariness

Animals fight, hunt, and kill for survival, and are shown being bitten, killed, and eaten. 

Sexy Stuff

Mating rituals are discussed in a scientific context. 

Language
Consumerism

Range Rover jeeps are visible. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Dynasties is a nature documentary series that focuses on how specific species struggle to keep their animal communities alive among a range of challenges. It’s beautiful and educational, but sensitive viewers may be upset by some of the moments showing animals hunting, fighting, and dying. Mating rituals are also discussed, but in a scientific context.  

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What's the story?

DYNASTIES is a BBC five-part series that focuses on five different species of endangered animals. Narrated by naturalist Sir David Attenborough, it follows chimpanzees in Senegal, lions in Kenya, painted wolves in Zimbabwe, Emperor penguins in Antarctica, and tigers in India, and reveals how they're fighting for survival against the elements, natural rivals, and lack of space due to the expansion of the modern world. 

Is it any good?

This beautiful and fascinating docuseries offers intimate looks at how five different species of animals struggle to survive in their natural habitats. From following the Kenyan Marsh Lion pride as it tries to survive after being abandoned by the adult males, to capturing the political and powerful fights for leadership among the males in chimpanzee social groups, it reveals how different groups or animals preserve their “dynasties” in the wild. It also shows how the natural elements, and the destruction of their natural habitats, impact theses processes. 

The visually stunning footage, combined with well-constructed storylines, create experiences in which viewers can easily be drawn into. However, its conservationist messages, despite being more subtle than those featured in the Planet Earth: Blue Planet series, are still clear. Dynasties is both family-friendly and entertaining, but still serves as an important reminder: it is the responsibility of human beings to protect every living thing on Earth. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about nature shows and documentaries. What messages do they send? What are the different ways these messages are communicated to viewers?

  • What does Dynasties teach us about the way animals protect themselves and their families and social groups? Were you surprised by any of the behaviors they exhibited?

  • How do documentarians manage to get close up footage of animals without interacting with them? How do they create stories based on the footage they collect over the years? 

TV details

For kids who love nature

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