Josie and the Pussycats
By Kari Croop,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Classic 'toon's tunes are fun, but it feels awfully dated.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Kids learn that working together pays off and that it doesn't pay off to be nasty.
Working together is the key to stopping villains and saving the world. Negative actions always beget negative consequences.
Positive Role Models
Although there's a little bit of stereotyping (Melody, the blonde, for example, is painfully ditsy), Valerie is the smartest of the bunch and was the first African-American female character to appear as a regular on a Saturday morning cartoon. Alexandra is an obvious villain, but her scheming never pays off.
Violence & Scariness
In each episode, the band crosses paths with a new villain who's created a destructive creature or device. Some of them can look a little scary, but the violence is suggested rather than substantive.
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One character slings insults like "ding-a-ling," etc.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that some of the villains and monsters in this classic 1970s cartoon series could scare sensitive kids, but in general, the show is packed with positive messages about teamwork and pulling together. The bad guys are always obvious, and they always get what's coming to them in the end.
Where to Watch
Based on 1 parent review
A nice, nonviolent cartoon where women lead.
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What's the Story?
Josie (voiced by Janet Waldo), Valerie (Barbara Pariot), and Melody (Jackie Joseph) are members of the all-girl rock act JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS, a band known for its trademark costumes (long tails, ears for hats, etc.) and groovy tunes. But lately -- between tour stops with their roadie Alan (Jerry Dexter), manager Alexander (Casey Kasem), and Alexander's scheming sister, Alexandra (Sherry Alberoni) -- they've been rubbing elbows with dangerous villains bent on destroying the world. In each episode, the gang splits their time between rocking out and reeling in the bad guys.
Is It Any Good?
It's sad to say, but the dangerously catchy theme song is the best part about this classic slice of 1970s nostalgia -- which might succeed in thrilling parents and boring kids at the same time with its obviously dated material and random plots that seem a little ridiculous.
Although it's clear that Hanna-Barbera was trying to make Josie and the Pussycats as good as its other Saturday-morning hit, Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! (for one thing, Alan's and Fred's ascots were eerily similar), a hip concept and leopard-print leotards don't quite get the job done. Maybe that's why it only lasted for 16 episodes?
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about stereotypes and how this show's female characters stack up against the ones in today's cartoons. Who are your favorite animated heroines, and why?
How well does the gang work together as a group? Does anyone tend to take the lead? Would they be as successful at thwarting bad guys if they didn't rely on teamwork?
Parents: What did you think of this series when you were a kid? What do you think of it now? Kids: Do you like it, or do you think it's silly?
- Premiere date: September 12, 1970
- Cast: Casey Kasem, Janet Waldo, Jerry Dexter
- Network: Boomerang
- Genre: Kids' Animation
- Topics: Friendship, Music and Sing-Along
- TV rating: TV-G
- Last updated: May 22, 2023
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