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What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Mao Mao: Heroes of Pure Heart is an action-adventure series about a fearless warrior who settles in a kingdom of sweet-natured creatures in order to protect them from enemies. Action scenes are loud and flashy, involving swords and axes, laser blasts, light beams that resemble bullets, and lots of impact. Death is implied in some cases, but the heroes always emerge unscathed. Mao Mao (voiced by Parker Simmons) and his sidekick, Badgerclops (Griffith Kimmins), have different methods of heroism, but they're both motivated by a desire to help their new friends and preserve peace. The intensity of this show's action makes it a better choice for tweens than for younger kids, but the sharp writing and appealing heroes give the show cross-generational appeal.
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What's the story?
In MAO MAO: HEROES OF PURE HEART, a wannabe samurai hero finds an unexpected destiny as protector of the gentle residents of Pure Heart Kingdom after an accident causes Mao Mao (voiced by Parker Simmons) and his sidekick, Badgerclops (Griffith Kimmins), to crash land there. The impact cracks the kingdom's defenses against enemies bent on stealing the coveted Heart treasure. Seeing their vulnerability as a means of achieving legendary status, Mao Mao moves in and, with Badgerclops and their new friend, Adorabat (Lika Leong), wages battle against a barrage of outside enemies and polices spats among the kingdom's citizens.
Is it any good?
With all the fervor of the valiant swashbuckling hero Puss in Boots, Mao Mao brings his fearless determination to the sweet-natured and naïve population of his new home. Where they are accommodating to a fault, Mao Mao and oafish Badgerclops are the first and strongest line of defense between them and those who would do them harm. And thank goodness for that because without him, Pure Heart would be lost in a flash.
Besides being full of frantically paced fun, Mao Mao: Heroes of Pure Heart reminds viewers that heroes come in all different shapes, sizes, and causes of motivation. Whether it's a destiny you're born into or -- as in the case of Mao Mao and Badgerclops -- one you crash into by accident, the point is to make the best of your situation and to use your gifts to help inspire others. Amid the show's hilarity and the characters' counterintuitive priorities, this is the message that will linger with kids after the show's end.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how Mao Mao's actions reflect his dedication to being a hero. How does he show that protecting the Sweetypies are his priority? Does his relationship with them evolve from that of protector to that of a friend? If so, in what ways does that change Mao Mao?
Is Mao Mao a willing role model for his adoring protege Adorabat? Does he enjoy the role? What does he teach him? Why are role models important? Who are some of your role models?
How does this show's violence compare to what you see in other shows you watch? Do you think that violence on TV has negative effects on impressionable viewers? How does a show's animation style change how violent content is perceived?
- Premiere date: July 1, 2019
- Cast: Parker Simmons, Griffith Kimmins, Lika Leong
- Network: Cartoon Network
- Genre: Kids' Animation
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Superheroes, Adventures, Misfits and Underdogs
- Character strengths: Courage
- TV rating: TV-Y7-FV
- Available on: Streaming
- Award: Common Sense Selection
- Last updated: November 11, 2020
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