Handy Manny

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
Handy Manny TV Poster Image
Friendly handyman teaches kids about cooperation.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

Parents say

age 2+
Based on 24 reviews

Kids say

age 4+
Based on 15 reviews

We think this TV show stands out for:

A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

In addition to important lessons about working together, kids will learn Spanish words and phrases.

Positive Messages

The show has strong messages about teamwork, problem solving, and a positive attitude.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Characters are community-minded residents of a culturally diverse town and are always respectful to each other and appreciative of individuals' special talents. The show strays from gender-specific roles, casting a knowledgeable woman as the owner of a hardware store.

Violence & Scariness

Characters occasionally bump into objects or each other, but there are no injuries.

Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

Plenty of tie-in products available.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Handy Manny is an  inviting animated series for preschoolers that reinforces commonly heard Spanish words and phrases and introduces viewers to a few new ones. Characters focus on helping others and always putting the community's needs before their own. Problem-solving and preparedness are frequent themes, and viewers see the negative repercussions of impatience and poor teamwork. Cultural diversity and respect for others tops off this well-rounded series.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 2 and 6 year old Written byNMetzger March 8, 2010
Handy Manny is great! Both my 6 year old daughter and my 2 year old son love this show. The two songs that are repeated in every episode are catchy and cute. I... Continue reading
Parent of a 3, 3, and 5 year old Written byHatedNation May 3, 2011

How Handy

Great Show for smaller children, teaching responsibility, work ethic and camaraderie. (Children may inadvertently attempt to use tools or build things)
Teen, 13 years old Written by15zenderb March 26, 2011

Mindless Brainwashing

a good source of Spanish, but i think we all know that when little kids watch it they learn absolutely nothing from it. its also UNREALISTIC!!! ONLY FOR AGES 2...
Teen, 13 years old Written byTheBombFunn July 15, 2013

Great show for little kid's

I have to say. When I saw this when I was little, I really loved it despite being a rip-off of Bob the Builder. It's a very good, delightful show.

What's the story?

HANDY MANNY introduces preschoolers to the multicultural town of Sheetrock Hills and its friendly repairman Manny Garcia (voiced by Wilmer Valderrama of That '70s Show). Together with his sometimes-feisty (but mostly eager) set of talking tools, Manny is always ready to pitch in and help his friends. Manny's repair shop is home to a diverse group of coworkers: Pat the Hammer (Tom Kenny), Turner the Screwdriver (Dee Bradley Baker), Felipe the Phillips Screwdriver (Carlos Alazraqui), Dusty the Saw (Kath Soucie), Stretch the Tape Measure (Nika Futterman), Rusty the Wrench (Fred Stoller), and Squeeze the Pliers (Futterman again). Although Manny does his best to keep the tools on task, they sometimes let their own ambitious plans lead to messy mishaps on the job. But with patience and cooperation, the group learns how to solve problems and come through for their neighbors.

Is it any good?

This show is brimming with positive content for young viewers: Themes of teamwork, preparedness, and mutual respect are mixed with the silly comedy that preschoolers love. For example, in one episode, bickering duo Felipe and Turner ignore Manny's advice and open a glue bottle before protecting their workspace with newspaper. In their haste to start the project, they accidentally glue themselves together and -- after much stretching and snapping back together -- they learn that they have to get along to help their friends.

Handy Manny also exposes preschoolers to aspects of Latino culture. Legendary Latino band Los Lobos contributes the catchy music, and Manny uses basic Spanish terms like "hola" and "gracias" in his everyday dialogue. When he introduces less-familiar Spanish terms, Manny includes their English translations so kids can make the language connection. Colorful animation, engaging storylines, and rich characters will keep young viewers coming back for more of this engaging Disney series.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how Manny and his friends cooperate to overcome challenges in Handy Manny. What special talents does each character contribute to the team? How do they resolve their differences?

  • Kids: How do you handle problems with your own friends?

  • Parents: Use repetition to reinforce the Spanish that your kids learn from the show.

  • How do the characters in Handy Manny demonstrate communication and teamwork? Why are these important character strengths?

TV details

Character Strengths

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Themes & Topics

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