Esme & Roy: Holiday Spirit/Snow Worries

TV review by
Mandie Caroll, Common Sense Media
Esme & Roy: Holiday Spirit/Snow Worries TV Poster Image
Mindful monster cuteness, fun in winter-themed special.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Each segment includes a simple mindfulness technique (belly breathing, use of a calming glitter jar) that kids and families could practice together.

Positive Messages

You can handle disappointment. Deep breathing and other calming practices can help you move through big feelings. Getting presents is fun, but so is giving them. Imagination and pretend play are often as fun as the "real" thing.

Positive Role Models

Esme and her monster pal Roy are fun-loving, creative monster babysitters. They work really well together to solve problems. Esme knows a lot about mindfulness techniques that can help upset monsters move through big feelings. Esme has medium dark brown skin with curly hair pulled back into a high Afro puff. Roy is a yellow monster with a big belly. All other characters are monsters of various colors, shapes, and sizes.

Violence & Scariness

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Esme & Roy: Holiday Spirit/Snow Worries is a holiday themed episode of the popular HBO series about a monster babysitter duo, human girl, Esme and boy monster, Roy. Whether it's anticipating a visit from gift-bearing Furry Claws or playing in the snow, the tot monsters are going to face challenges they need help solving. Resourceful Esme (voiced by Millie Davis) to the rescue, always ready with simple mindful behaviors that help rattled young creatures settle down. Roy (voiced by Patrick McKenna) and Esme then decide on some other fun plan or project. With an identical format to the series (fun activity-challenge-disappointment-mindfulness technique-new fun activity) and catchy, soothing songs, little fans of the show will appreciate the predictable pattern they know so well. Parents will appreciate the calming behaviors each segment emphasizes. An excellent choice to get little ones in the holiday spirit.

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What's the story?

In the first segment of ESME & ROY: HOLIDAY SPIRIT/SNOW WORRIES, little monsters Simon, Snugs, and Dumpling wait and wait for Furry Claus to come visit, and they are super disappointed when they learn he's too sick to come. In the second segment, tiny, but mighty Fig (so strong she can carry big, old Roy!) has so much fun playing in the snow, but after warming up with hot cocoa inside, she discovers the sun came out and melted much of the snow, including her beloved snow monster. In both cases, the tot monsters begin to cry, but Esme offers them a mindful act to try and a sweet little song to go with it. Feeling a "little bit" better helps the monsters, Esme, and Roy figure out how to save the day.

Is it any good?

This comforting and cheery winter holiday special is just the thing to celebrate the season with little viewers. This full-of-fun offering from Sesame Workshop, Esme & Roy: Holiday Spirit/Snow Worries, distinguishes itself with the high kid-appeal mindful behaviors it shares. The simple behaviors Esme teaches her monster charges are a great jumping off point for families to teach and practice any manner of self-calming techniques, which certainly do come in handy during busy and sometimes stressful holiday preparations. The animation is full of bright colors, soft edges, and glowing details, and the winter theme amps up the soft and cozy feel. Positive modeling of teamwork and problem-solving -- paired with super relatable scenarios that create intense feelings -- make this a show that just gets little kids. Make some hot cocoa, pull up a blanket, and settle in for a short holiday break with Esme, Roy, and your little monster.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the disappointment the little monsters face in Esme & Roy: Holiday Spirit/Snow Worries. What causes their sadness in each segment? When have you been disappointed? How were you able to move on? Who helped?

  • Talk about art, crafting and imagination. How did these things "save the day"? What activities can you do that will help you feel better?

  • Esme shows the little monsters in her care some mindfulness practices that can help with big feelings (this is when she sings). What do you think about belly breathing or using a glitter jar to calm down? Why do you think these practices help the little monsters?

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love preschooler TV

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