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What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Niko and the Sword of Light is an adventure cartoon about a young champion on a quest to save his home from an oppressive villain who has cursed the world with darkness. Often scenes showing Niko engaged in battle against snarling, imposing creatures possessed by the darkness have some edgy violence that may be scary to younger kids. When Niko defeats them, the creatures don't die, though; instead viewers see dark forms escape and the creatures return to more innocuous forms like small rodents and insects. On the other hand, both Niko and his guide, Lyra, are exceptional role models because of their willingness to face difficult (and often dangerous) tasks with courage and determination. Need another reason to like this story? Niko looks every inch the underdog, being much younger and smaller than any champion to come before him, but he never lets that interfere with his belief in himself.
- Parents say
- Kids say
-Fantastic overarching narrative and character development
-Spirit of adventure in full swing
-Optimism, self-confidence, and inclusiveness are the key co... Continue reading
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What's the story?
NIKO AND THE SWORD OF LIGHT opens with the awakening of a young boy named Niko (voiced by Andre Robinson), the last of his people and a legendary champion destined to banish the darkness from his home. Unfortunately, Niko's awakening was a bit premature, leaving his guide, Lyra (Kari Wahlgren), scrambling to teach him what he needs to know to overcome dangers and outwit Nar Est (Steve Blum), the evil sorcerer with the world in his grasp. Together with his friends Flicker (Dee Bradley Baker) and Mandok (Tom Kenny), and his unfailing guide, Lyra, Niko must harness the power of his sword of light if the world has any hope of conquering the darkness.
Is it any good?
Niko's is a true underdog story brimming with action, suspense, and excellent role models in both Niko and Lyra. Bursting onto the scene far earlier than the elders and Lyra imagined, Niko is a bundle of childish energy faced with very grown-up responsibility, and it's up to almost equally youthful Lyra (though she's been suspended in time and not aging for the past 700+ years) to keep him focused. This is no easy task, and it eventually requires a big leap of faith for Lyra, but their combined commitment to the cause is admirable.
For his part, Niko's willingness to face challenges with a positive attitude and inexhaustible courage make it impossible to dislike this pint-size powerhouse. He chooses his friends with care and always looks out for the little guy, even while he's gearing up for a showdown to save his people from a force that's defeated every champion to come before him. Visually enchanting and boasting content of positive substance, Niko and the Sword of Light is a series that families can enjoy together.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what defines a hero. In what ways do Niko and the Sword of Light's Niko and Lyra qualify as heroes? How do their character strengths (courage, perseverance) help others? Who are some of your role models? What characteristics do you most admire in them?
Did any parts of this story or its characters scare you? Do you like to be a little bit scared when you watch TV or movies? How do you tell the difference between realistic danger and danger that's imaginary?
Niko's ability to adapt to his surroundings and the challenges he faces is one of his greatest strengths. What are some of yours? Why is it important to recognize the positive qualities we have? How does self-esteem play a role in how you relate to others?
- Premiere date: July 18, 2017
- Cast: Andre Robinson, Kari Wahlgren, Tom Kenny
- Network: Amazon Prime Video
- Genre: Kids' Animation
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Adventures, Great Boy Role Models, Great Girl Role Models, Misfits and Underdogs
- Character strengths: Courage, Perseverance
- TV rating: TV-G
- Available on: Streaming
- Award: Common Sense Selection
- Last updated: November 11, 2020
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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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