A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Viewers see the show's hosts and guests using applied science and math skills to investigate mysteries and learn new things. Scientists' curiosity drives their work, and there's no question too big to tackle.
Positive Role Models
The scientists are good at and passionate about what they do, and they think creatively to solve problems and answer questions. They use their unique skill sets to analyze data and collaborate with other experts for broader understanding, viewing questions as opportunities rather than obstacles. All three hosts are people of color, and two are women.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some discussion about animal mating habits and rituals.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that NOVA Wonders is an educational series where scientists investigate quandaries like the universe's make-up and whether artificial intelligence can mimic the human experience and emotions. Each hour-long episode centers on one question, exploring how various scientists study, analyze data, and experiment to gain a better understanding of the topic and eventually arrive at a conclusion. The show's content is mostly appropriate for kids and tweens, although there are some references to sex, reproduction, and the mating process in applicable segments. Viewers see STEM concepts applied to real-world scenarios, and there's a general sense of the value of curiosity in driving discovery. Because the show's three scientist hosts are people of color and two of them are women, it also challenges stereotypes about professionals in STEM fields.
Is It Any Good?
This series does a good job condensing complex concepts for an audience of laypeople, but the content is pretty dry for anyone who's not already interested in the topics. Extensive time is spent observing the work scientists do -- and sometimes watching them doing the work they do -- which isn't necessarily action-packed viewing. The good news? They're usually enthusiastic enough about their projects for everyone. The bad news? Not every viewer will be as jazzed about watching spiders attempt to mate, for example, as are those who make this kind of thing their life's work.
For tweens and teens with an interest in the sciences, NOVA Wonders can be a decent and educational watch. If nothing else, the show and its hosts reinforce the value of curiosity in inspiring interests and careers, particularly in STEM fields. Seeing practical applications of science and math skills is another reminder of how seemingly esoteric concepts can be used in real-world scenarios.
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.