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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 although this series about a boy who likes to make movies with his best friends is animated, it often explores relatively mature topics about families, marriage, and divorce. There’s not too much in the way of swearing, sex, or violence, but the jokes and themes might not be very entertaining for young viewers. The main character, Brendon, lives with his single mom, while his friend Jason seems to have little contact with his parents. The kids themselves must often bend a few rules in order to plan and shoot the scenes for their movies.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Brendon (voiced by HOME MOVIES creator/writer Brendon Small) is a budding filmmaker at age 8. Along with his best friends Jason (H. Jon Benjamin) and Melissa (Melissa Bardin Galsky), he’s constantly planning his next shoot, talking about dialogue, or filming a scene. This clever animated series shows the lengths that a persistent young artist is willing to go to pursue his craft, even if it sometimes means ignoring homework or bending a few rules to gain access to just the right location for a key sequence.
Is it any good?
While Home Movies (which originally aired from 1999-2004) is about three young kids, the show's jokes and situations are clearly aimed at an older audience. When the series isn't focused on Brendon’s films, it also touches on family relationships. Brendon lives with his single mom and adopted sister and sometimes interacts with his dad and stepmother. Jason and Melissa also seem to have vaguely dysfunctional relationships with their parents (although, really, who doesn’t?).
In this series, the kids have to deal with many of the same issues as real-world kids -- including divorce, under-employed parents, and watching their single parents negotiate the dating world. Brendon’s entertaining films offer the trio an entertaining and creative escape and sometimes seem like a metaphor for needing to escape.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about divorce. What do you think about the way Brendon’s single mom is portrayed? What about his dad and step-mother? Does this seem like an accurate look at divorce? If your parents are divorced, or if you have friends whose parents are divorced, does this show get it right?
What do you think about Brendon’s devotion to making movies? Is he showing an early interest in the craft, or is he a bit too focused on his hobby?
For kids who love quirky entertainment
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.