Gortimer Gibbon's Life on Normal Street

 
(i)

 

Delightful family series with outstanding positive themes.

What parents need to know

Educational value

The show intends to entertain rather than to educate. 

Positive messages

The series puts strong values at the forefront with quality friendships among the characters and a standout storyline surrounding the evolving affection between the tweens and an elderly neighbor they come to care for. Nurturing family relationships are prominent as well, and Gortimer and his friends embrace their families' influence in their lives. 

Positive role models

Gortimer and his friends are supportive of each other and share an unspoken understanding that makes them such a tight group. Adults, including parents and an eccentric elderly neighbor, are good influences in the tweens' lives as well. 

Violence & scariness

No violence, but the characters find themselves in mildly perilous situations. In one scene, Gortimer passes out after inhaling what he presumes to be poisonous gas, for instance. They never come to any real harm, though, and even with hints at the supernatural, the "scares" aren't enough to frighten anyone.   

Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Language

It's said that one of the main characters is giving up swearing, so he uses food-inspired stand-ins like "Son of a blueberry" and "What the bean dip?" in place of the real stuff. The effect is more comical than anything, but kids who watch might follow suit. 

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Gortimer Gibbon's Life on Normal Street is an endearing series with strong themes of friendship and family relationships. The main characters are three quirky tweens with longtime ties to each other and an amiable friendship with their elderly neighbor, whom they help in numerous ways. One of the tweens often utters stand-in swear words like "son of a blueberry," but there's no traditional strong language. Expect some very mild peril when the kids' plans meet with unexpected snags, but ultimately this is a wholesome show that's appropriate for the whole family.  

What's the story?

GORTIMER GIBBON'S LIFE ON NORMAL STREET is the story of three friends -- Gortimer (Sloane Morgan Siegel), Ranger (Drew Justice), and Mel (Ashley Boettcher) -- and the mysterious things that happen in their deceptively average-looking neighborhood. It all starts with Gortimer's encounter with their eccentric elderly neighbor, Mrs. Hudspith (Fionnula Flanagan), who asks for his help in a strange project that winds up revealing a long-held secret of hers. Suddenly the kids find themselves in the midst of other bizarre happenings, all within a stone's throw of Gortimer's house on Normal Street.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Parents know that it's no simple task finding a show that's both appropriate for and appealing to the whole family. Whether it's suggestive situations too mature for youngsters or fantasy so unrealistic that tweens tune out, finding the right mix of innocence and entertainment is a challenge.

Enter Gortimer Gibbon and his faithful friends with their quirky ways, hearty relationships, and indomitable spirits, and you'll find that the search is over. This delightful show has something for everyone -- mystery, comedy, and a touch of nostalgia for grown-ups who remember fondly the unique sense of magic in childhood adventures. Add in forthright values, great examples of positive relationships, and a touch of fantasy, and you have the makings of a real winner for kids and adults alike.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about relationships. What are the markers of a healthy relationship? How do good friends overcome disagreements?  

  • A recurring theme in this show is respecting others' feelings. How do the characters show that they care about those around them? Why is it sometimes difficult to do the same in real life? What are the rewards of treating people kindly? 

  • Kids: How does this series compare to some of your other favorites? Are the characters realistic? Can you relate to the situations? Do you think TV characters are positive role models

This review of Gortimer Gibbon's Life on Normal Street was written by

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

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent of a 3, 5, and 8 year old Written byLuvMyGirls July 13, 2014
 

Fabulous!

This has to be the best quality TV series for kids that I have ever come across. I can't wait for Amazon to come out with more episodes. My girls loved it too and can't wait either. It has a great message and just what I was looking for in a children's TV series. NO annoying characters and NO laugh track!! This is anything but your normal Disney/Nick children silly sitcoms. It is made for kids but is actually a "mature" show and not dumbed down with stupid jokes. It actually made me laugh and kept my interest as well as my kids. It is about 3 "normal" kids-no flirting or crushes. Just 3 best friend hanging out. I can't say enough good things about it. Hurray for Amazon for creating a QUALITY kids series.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 17 years old Written byJackalope April 21, 2015
 

Goofy Family Fare

I'm 17. This show is not meant for me in any way, shape, or form. However, in some strange way, I enjoyed it. Gortimer Gibbon is a totally goofy, fun show that I would let any kid watch. There's nothing even remotely suggestive in the entire show. There's a mention of a divorce between Gortimer's parents, but they get along, and there's not even a hint of malice between them. There's also talk of Mel having a crush on Gortimer, but it never gets weirder than what you would expect out of a few first graders. As for the quality of the show, it's excellent. The humor is all pointed at younger kids, so there weren't really belly laughs from me. I'm having trouble describing the show with any other word than "goofy". "Quaint" might be a good word. The show is definitely odd and unusual, but in a totally good way. It's silly and fun for everybody. I only wish that season 2 was available.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Educator and Parent of a 7 and 9 year old Written bykrissyfs April 2, 2015
 

Family Friendly! Entertaining! Smart Series for Kids!

My 7 year old son and 10 year old daughter absolutely love this series! There are so many story elements that keep my children coming back for more- the mystery, the humor , and the creative and engaging dialogue between the characters. What keeps me coming back? the lessons the kids learn at the end of the episodes. I've watched several of them with my children and we have been able to use the shows to talk about all kinds of life's challenges! I highly recommend it!!
What other families should know
Great messages

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