Hilda

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
Hilda TV Poster Image
Whimsical books-based show celebrates adventure, friendship.

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

Educational Value

The show intends to entertain rather than to educate.

 

Positive Messages

Hilda's sense of curiosity inspires many adventures in which she befriends unusual creatures and makes amazing discoveries. The series is rooted in fantasy, but even so, Hilda has freedoms to meet strangers and travel widely that kids typically don't have. Strong themes of friendship, especially that which comes of looking past what makes someone different from you and finding out what makes them similar.

 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Hilda is joyful, adventurous, and outgoing. She is kind to everyone and actively looks for ways to make friends and build bridges. She is undeterred by differences between herself and others, which endears her to everyone.

 

Violence & Scariness

Some peril befalls Hilda and her friends (falling off cliffs, tumbling down mountains, etc.), but no one is ever hurt.

 

Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

The series is inspired by a book series by Luke Pearson.

 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Hilda is an animated series based on the graphic novels of the same name by Luke Pearson. The protagonist is a kindhearted human girl who meets and befriends many unusual creatures, including elves, trolls, and giants. She helps them solve problems they encounter and acts as a mediator of sorts when there are misunderstandings. Hilda herself is this show's best quality, but it also benefits from curious characters, exceptionally matched storytelling and animation, and an endearing world of fantasy.

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What's the story?

In HILDA, the titular character (voiced by Bella Ramsey) is a young girl who finds all kinds of adventures among the elves, trolls, and giants nearby the secluded woodland home she shares with her mom (Daisy Haggard). But when the two of them pull up stakes and relocate to the town of Trolberg, Hilda discovers that even bigger adventures -- and more surprising new friends -- await her there.

Is it any good?

The beloved graphic novel series adapts beautifully to the screen in this whimsical fantasy about a gregarious girl who thrives on experiencing new things. Hilda's is a world where mountains awaken from eons-long naps to become giants once again, and elven communities have strict rules about who can and cannot see them. Rotund furry creatures fly in the sky like birds, and sun-sensitive trolls are turned to stone. There are surprises around every corner in this surreal place.

What also abounds here are gentle storytelling and sweet themes of tolerance and friendship. Hilda is decidedly unrushed with music filling pauses in dialogue and characters (especially Hilda) extending kindness to each other at every opportunity. Its delightful animation draws heavily on the books for inspiration and matches well the story's roots in magic and fantasy.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how Hilda's fantasy world compares to the real one. Are there aspects of Hilda's experiences that are similar to your own? What place does fantasy have in entertainment? How does seeing a different perspective through the eyes of a TV character influence how you see your own?

  • Kids: What accounts for Hilda's eagerness to befriend the many creatures and people she meets? Is she ever hesitant because they look or act differently from her? How do stereotypes affect how we relate to new people? Are all stereotypes inherently bad, or are there instances in which they can be helpful?

  • Do this story and these characters transition well from book to screen? How might Hilda be received if it was live action instead of animated? What other book characters do you enjoy seeing in TV shows or movies? Which haven't made the jump but in your opinion should?

  • How does Hilda display curiosity? Why do you think this is an important character strength

TV details

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