A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Show teaches all about the building/making process: materials, tools, building process, mechanics, and engineering.
Mixed -- very positive messages about being empowered to solve problems and figure out how to build whatever you want. Show's host sometimes has a grumpy attitude and insults kids (in a joking manner, but still).
Positive Role Models
Mixed -- the makers on the show are really talented and will inspire kids to make inventions of their own. However, the main host doesn't really model positive social-emotional skills, though his grumpy attitude is mostly tongue-in-cheek.
Cast of five recurring characters are all White males who substantially follow stereotypes like teasing each other, expressing bravado about one's abilities, and really liking power tools. The kid guest stars on each episode are from diverse backgrounds but don't get much air time.
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Violence & Scariness
Some mean characters and put-downs, though mostly done in a joking manner and not sincere.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Mild innuendo likely to go over most kids' heads; one episode has an adult man sitting on a toilet in his underwear.
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Language like "ass," "sucks," "crap," "turd." Rude language like calling people "dumb" and saying "shut up" and "oh my God." Cursing-adjacent language like "frickin'," and some bleeped-out stronger language, plus phrases meant to suggest swearing ("holy ship," etc.).
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Products & Purchases
Pretty extensive visual product placement by a few brands, though the hosts don't talk about these products on camera.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Making Fun is a reality show in which YouTube maker star Jimmy DiResta and 4 friends help kids' outlandish invention requests come to life. The title has a double meaning- the hosts both make awesomely fun builds for kids and also make fun of the kids and each other. Host DiResta has a negative grumpy attitude and insults kids, calling them brats and their invention ideas "dumb" (in a joking manner, but still). The language is stronger than parents might expect for a show geared towards kids, with words like "ass," "sucks," and "crap." There's rude language like "shut up" and "oh my God," cursing-adjacent language like "frickin," and some bleeped out stronger language where it's pretty clear what they're saying. Potty humor abounds, with lots of mention of farts, poop, and toilets. Language and rudeness aside, the show is fairly educational, teaching kids about building materials and techniques, and some introductory engineering. If families can get past the hosts' language and attitude, there's actually a lot of delightful learning happening in Making Fun.
Is It Any Good?
This STEM show has faults, but if grown-ups are able to overlook them, the whole family can enjoy a wildly entertaining and inspiring series. The producers of Making Fun made an interesting choice in casting DiResta and his friends. They are incredibly talented at what they do, but their rude and surly behavior doesn't really scream "kids show." Most of DiResta's whole "I don't like kids" schtick is clearly tongue-in-cheek, but why even go there in a show aimed at kids? Why include curse words when this show has the potential to appeal to an even younger kid audience? And, why is the cast made up of 5 white males who substantially follow stereotypes?
Aside from these issues, Making Fun is likely to be a home run with kids. The hosts are very silly, and the show uses funny graphics and song montages to keep it lively. The actual builds they make on the show are pretty awesome, and encapsulate a lot of topics with high kid appeal (poop, pizza, pandas, etc.). There is a lot of educational content woven throughout each episode. If grown-ups can look past the iffy elements and embrace the irreverent silliness, Making Fun may quickly gain a prime spot in your family's viewing rotation.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
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