A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this series of animated shorts is essentially mild adult slapstick, with occasional moments of sexually suggestive content and frequent silly behavior from the lead character. Mr. Bean is a modern-day Charlie Chaplin of sorts; the episodes feature very little dialogue and the title character finds himself led into outlandish situations by bad decisions. Most kids will be able to distinguish the altered animated reality from anything in our world, but very young children might find themselves confused and even upset by some of the series' content.
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What's the story?
MR. BEAN -- THE ANIMATED SERIES is a collection of short animated episodes starring the bumbling, confused character made famous by actor Rowan Atkinson. In each installment, a comic situation is set up by Mr. Bean's (Rowan Atkinson) fundamental misunderstanding of human nature and the world around him. We then watch as Mr. Bean stumbles his way through these situations, attempting to accomplish an often impossible goal. Mr. Bean is the kind of character who believes his teddy bear is a living creature, and who frequently sees things that aren't really there.
Is it any good?
Anyone who's spent time watching British comedy has undoubtedly encountered its unique peculiarities. It's really a completely different species from the American variety, more subtle in many ways but more outrageous in other ways too. Monty Python, Benny Hill, even the original version of The Office...there are plenty of British comedy phenomena that have made their way around the world, but they remain an acquired taste. Mr. Bean -- The Animated Series is another example of pure British comedy that will either translate or won't to non-British viewers.
The titular character has become an icon in the UK thanks to performer Rowan Atkinson; there was a live-action series and films in addition to the cartoons. There's something entertaingly elastic about the series' animation style, but your enjoyment will come down to how you feel about other British comedy series. There aren't many specifically UK-centric jokes, but the tone of the entire enterprise relies upon elaborately constructed slapstick and the frequent humiliation of the titular character.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how exaggerated cartoon violence seems on television versus real violence. Is it strange to watch the characters experience so much unrealistic violence?
Mr. Bean is a British character originally. Do you think the British sense of humor is different from that in America? How so?
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.
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