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Jonny Quest

TV review by
Deirdre Sheppard, Common Sense Media
Jonny Quest TV Poster Image
Classic cartoon adventures for grade-schoolers.

Parents say

age 10+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 5 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Meant to entertain, not educate.

Positive Messages

Many of the foreign characters are one dimensional and suffer from some dated stereotyping (reflecting the show's 1960s origins). But the show also embraces the idea that there are many different types of families.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The Quest's unusual family unit is tight and supportive, and they're always there for each other in the clinches. Unfortunately, the difference between the good guys (strong-jawed, usually white, unfailingly noble and brave) and the bad guys (rumpled, ill-dressed, uncomfortably often an ethnic or racial minority) is pretty stereotypical.

Violence & Scariness

The characters use guns and other, often-futuristic weapons, and there are many on-screen deaths. Some scary monsters.

Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this classic action cartoon -- which originally aired in the '60s and had another TV incarnation in the mid-'80s -- includes some violence and dated stereotypes. But none of what's here is too iffy, and many modern kids will be able to relate to Jonny, who doesn't come from a traditional nuclear family.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byLowe's man June 10, 2014

mildy wild adventures

For all the talk you've made about stereotyping on this series, you've conveniently forgotten about Hadji. At the time it was rare for any Arab chara... Continue reading
Adult Written byTheChallenger August 19, 2013

Giving you the facts

Is this a bad show? No, it's and excellent show. Is it a show for kids? No, it was made for prime time. Is there some so called "racist" bits? We... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byYlndgomez June 30, 2009


Kid, 11 years old July 6, 2009

What's the story?

JONNY QUEST (also known as The Adventures of Jonny Quest), follows 11-year-old Jonny (voiced by Tim Matheson) as he accompanies his famous scientist father, Dr. Benton Quest (John Stephenson and Don Messick shared the role), on expeditions around the world. Also along for the ride are Jonny's adopted brother Hadji (Danny Bravo), family bodyguard Roger "Race" Bannon (Mike Road), and pet bulldog Bandit (Messick).

Is it any good?

Overall, this classic series provides lots of vintage humor and a surprisingly contemporary take on family life, given the Quests' atypical (for the '60s, anyway) family unit. But keep an eye out for futuristic weapons and glamorized violence (fights among villains sometimes include robots and scary mummies), as well as some awfully dated stereotyping.

Many of the show's foreign characters are one-dimensional; you may want to explain to kids that the concept of political correctness didn't exist back in Jonny's day, and tell them why labels and clichés aren't OK. On the plus side, the serial- and comic book-inspired Jonny Quest is filled with exciting adventures, and it succeeds in sending the message that "family" can take many forms.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the meaning of family. What does it mean to be a part of a family? Do you have to be related to someone for them be part of your family? Who makes up Jonny's family? How is his family similar to yours? How is it different?

  • Families can also discuss how the show stereotypes its foreign characters. Why is the way they're portrayed no longer acceptable? How do these kinds of labels and assumptions get started, anyway?

TV details

Themes & Topics

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