A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that a young female character often encourages her friend to ignore his conscience and lie, cheat, or steal. The two main adult characters offer inconsistent influence over an impressionable boy -- the devoted, upstanding father wants his son to be just like him, but the villainous grandfather hopes his protégé will follow in his evil footsteps. Although after much soul-searching, Manny usually follows his instincts and makes amends for any wrongdoing, in this show, life lessons mostly take a backseat to mischievous fun. Make sure young tweens understand that in real life, iffy behavior has more definite repercussions.
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What's the story?
EL TIGRE: THE ADVENTURES OF MANNY RIVERA follows the antics of a 13-year-old superhero-to-be who lives with his super-hero dad and his super-villain grandfather, both of whom vie for his allegiance. Dad Rodolfo (a.k.a. White Pantera) (Eric Bauza) now focuses on fatherhood but can't resist battling evildoers. Also retired, Granpapi (Carlos Alazraqui) (a.k.a Puma Loco) is also easily tempted back into the nefarious crimes that made him famous. As for Manny, one twist of his belt buckle transforms him into his own alter ego, El Tigre, but he's undecided whether to use his powers for good or evil. He often turns to mischievous friend, Frida (Grey DeLisle), for guidance. Ultimately, Manny must search his heart and decide where his loyalties truly lie.
Is it any good?
El Tigre is the brainchild of Mexican-born husband-and-wife team Jorge R. Gutierrez and Sandra Equihua, who have infused the tween-geared series with touches of Latino culture. Tweens will enjoy the zany characters and exaggerated stories, but parents might take issue with the young characters' penchant for troublemaking, the absence of a strong role model for Manny, and the overall lack of repercussions for his questionable behavior. The most disappointing aspect of the series is Manny's friendship with Frida, who delights in getting him into sticky situations and relentlessly encourages him to lie and cheat his way out of trouble.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about strong role models. Tweens: Who are some of your role models? What do you most admire about them? How do you try to be like them? Parents and kids can also discuss how to make good decisions. How do you handle making a difficult decision? Who do you turn to for help? What kinds of tough decisions have you made? What factors played into your choice? Finally, don't forget to talk about peer pressure. How would you feel if your friends wanted you to do something you knew wasn't right? Would it be difficult to say no to them? Could you do it?
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