Mako Mermaids: An H2O Adventure

Common Sense Media says

H2O spin-off reels in more fun for kids, teens.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Educational value

Parts of the story touch on mythology surrounding merpeople, but overall the show intends to entertain.

Positive messages

Kids see teens step out of their comfort zones and embrace change, mostly with very positive results. In some cases, the experience challenges the impressions they had of how certain people lived and acted, and they gain new respect for others as a result. Mysterious happenings and the uncertain motivations of some characters cause short-lived tension.

Positive role models

Teens' personalities run the gamut from hot-headed and judgmental to sweet and peace-making. Some are selfish in their goals, but they change their tune after learning to see things from others' point of view. A prominent adult character keeps secrets to protect her identity, and the teens use this to blackmail her into helping them fix their problem with Zac.

Violence & scariness

Some tense moments when characters briefly are thought to be in danger, but nothing too serious.

Sexy stuff

Some teens pair off into couples, but physical affection is limited to hugging and an occasional kiss. When mermaids transition into humans, they're naked, but only bare shoulders, back and legs are shown. When Zac's in merman form, he's bare-chested. 

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

The show is a spin-off of H2O, and while the entire cast and basic plot are new for this series, fans may want to check out the original for more underwater fun.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Mako Mermaids is a spin-off of Nickelodeon's H2O: Just Add Water, but the cast is entirely new to this series. The show is geared toward teens, but it's likely to draw in younger fans as well if they're granted access to Netflix. For the most part, the content is conducive to this wide span of ages, save for some tense moments when characters are in danger or fear their magical powers might be discovered. The show does a good job of obscuring the mermaids' bareness when they become human, but Zac is always bare-chested in his marine form. Despite their picture-perfect looks, the girls prove that they're more than pretty faces, and positive themes about friendship, respect, and looking past appearances are worthwhile for the show's young viewers.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

In MAKO MERMAIDS, three young mermaids take to land for the first time to undo the effects of magical powers accidentally bestowed on a teen boy. A late-summer camping trip to the remote island of Mako takes an unexpected turn when Zac (Chai Romruen) falls into a mystical pool during a full moon and becomes a merman. The accident has dire consequences for the entire mermaid pod, which then shuns Sirena (Amy Ruffle), Nixie (Ivy Latimer), and Lyla (Lucy Fry), who decide to take Zac's powers back to set things right. But to do so, they have to find him, and that means taking on human forms and joining the land-dwellers.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Hoping to reel in some of H2O's success with viewers, Mako Mermaids retains many touches of the original, most evidently the emphasis on three beautiful teen mermaids who aren't exactly best friends in the beginning but whose relationship evolves over time. New to the mix is a male character, and a merman at that, which gives the show a distinct flair and a little more macho charisma. It's possible that this change could entice the boy demographic somewhat, but more likely it will just ramp up the appeal to the girls who are already watching.

Mako Mermaids marks a change in the tone of Netflix's original series, which previously had churned out only shows meant for an older audience. Of course, introducing kids to online TV raises its own concerns, so if this is your kids' first experience with this, that is a factor to consider. As for this show, though, its generally benign content welcomes a range of ages, and the mermaids' awkward fish-out-of-water storyline provides many laughable moments. There are also touches of mythology and subtle thinking points about tolerance and individuality that can be gleaned from the story if kids are so inclined.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about this show's unique take on teen girls. In what ways does the fact that the teens are outsiders give you a different perspective on typical teen behavior? Do these characters negate any stereotypes? Do they perpetuate any? What about Zac's character?

  • Kids: Why are stories about magic so magical for viewers? Is it fun to imagine the world differently from how it is? 

  • Parents can talk to their kids about online safety. What sites are you allowed to visit online? Why does your family have rules about this issue? Are there any benefits to watching TV online as opposed to the traditional way? 

TV details

Cast:Amy Ruffle, Chai Romruen, Ivy Latimer, Lucy Fry
Network:Netflix
Genre:Drama
Topics:Magic and fantasy, Friendship, Great girl role models, Ocean creatures
TV rating:TV-G
Available on:Streaming

This review of Mako Mermaids: An H2O Adventure was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 16 years old Written byrebma97 August 8, 2013
AGE
8
QUALITY
 

Okag Sequel To H2O

"Make Mermaids" is a decent sequel to "H2O". While it's not the best show out there, it's entertaining enough. Personally I prefer "H2O", but only slightly (I never loved that series). Parents should know that the mermaids, like in "H2O", wear bras and have their stomaches out, and the merman (Zac) is shirtless. Also, the mermaids are naked when they turn into humans. There are also relationships, which involve a little kissing. But overall it's fine for kids.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Educator and Parent Written byHelenia August 7, 2013
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

Very nicely done, casting, colours, music effects are very well done, can't wait for season 2 :)

Watched the H2o Just Add Water, this is a spin-off but they made an excellent job! not only the casting was good but also, the story surrounds real mermaids unlike the other series that they where humans turned into mermaids. Lots of colours, great music, laughter, fun and adventure! good for all ages! I definatelly suggest this to anyone.
Kid, 12 years old August 7, 2013
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

Good

Not as good as H2O: Just add water, but still pretty good...

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