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Parents' Guide to

NOVA Wonders

By Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 10+

Dense STEM series investigates universe's big questions.

TV PBS Educational 2018
NOVA Wonders Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

Community Reviews

age 2+

Based on 1 parent review

age 2+

World’s most untalented presenters

While the content is interesting, I cannot get through a full episode with these presenters, especially the two women. They have zero ability and sound like they are reading (not speaking) from a teleprompter. They seem to be doing bad impressions of presenters. Have any of them ever watched David Attenborough, Bill Nye, Alice Roberts, Brian Cox, or Neil DeGrasse Tyson--or any of many of the very talented scientists who do amazing science education with real talent and flair? I have to reiterate that I have tried three times and I cannot get through an entire episode no matter how interesting the subject is to me. I’m sure these three are nice people, and I might tolerate the guy, but the women are sadly. just. pathetic. I’ll stick to the BBC, thank you--or the regular NOVA series.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

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.

TV Details

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