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One Day at Disney

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
One Day at Disney TV Poster Image
Docuseries celebrates Disney's talented employees.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

Series introduces viewers to people in diverse range of jobs within Disney corporation, encourages new respect for work that goes on behind the scenes of what's on-screen or on location in Disney venues. Each subject speaks to inspiration that drives their work, the sense of accomplishment they take from it. Show celebrates human ingenuity, creativity, problem-solving, teamwork. Some stories involve issues like same-sex marriage, death.

Positive Role Models & Representations

All of the subjects embody passion for their work, express fulfillment they get from a job well done as they contribute to overall Disney image and products. Series spotlights several well-known faces of the Disney brand but also incorporates stories of employees whose work might otherwise go unnoticed, such as a Disneyland train engineer and a props fabricator.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language

Rarely: "oh my God."

Consumerism

Not surprisingly, Disney merchandise, productions, and destinations get lots of publicity from this self-promotional series. That said, advertising never seems the goal of the show; rather, its focus is on celebrating the people who make it all possible.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that One Day at Disney is a docuseries that spotlights Disney employees to show how their creativity and vision bring the company's projects to life. Short-form episodes center on the work of individual artists, engineers, animators, etc., all of whom collaborate within their fields to make possible the screen entertainment, products, and vacation locales now synonymous with the iconic Disney brand. The content isn't a thrillfest, but the vignette format works to the advantage of tweens and teens who might want to see some of how the magic is made behind the scenes. What's more, the show inspires respect for a wide variety of careers and talent sets and demonstrates how teamwork and effective problem-solving are essential to Disney's success.

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What's the story?

ONE DAY AT DISNEY tells the stories of more than 50 employees of the Walt Disney Company and shows how their work contributes to the corporation's extensive offerings on screen, on stage, in vacation destinations, and in merchandising. Narrated by Sterling K. Brown, the series starts with a feature-length episode and continues with short vignettes, each one spotlighting the work of people in departments like animation, research and development, animal care, broadcasting, sculpting, props manufacturing, and management. Together these stories paint a picture of how the brand stays at the forefront of entertainment nearly a century after visionary Walt Disney started his iconic company.

Is it any good?

This field trip into the recesses of Disney's sprawling campuses and destinations is much more than the thinly veiled marketing ploy you might suspect. True, viewers are treated to awe-inspiring footage of high-end travel hotspots like Animal Kingdom and Galaxy's Edge that are undeniably enticing, but that's merely a byproduct of the show's main objective. At the forefront is a who's who of people you (mostly) otherwise never would have heard of: a Disneyland train engineer, an artist who developed some of the most recognizable Pixar characters, a South African thespian who landed the role of a lifetime playing Rafiki onstage, and so on. What binds them together? Their passion for their work and their desire to continue pushing Disney into the future of entertainment.

Not surprisingly (this is Disney, after all), One Day at Disney is beautifully produced, further suggesting the company's desire to make stars of a selection of its lesser-known employees for a change. It's also an intriguing glimpse at the variety of talent that makes Disney's work possible. From sketch artists and sculptors to engineers and corner-office managers, the company is home to employees from diverse backgrounds and with unique life passions. In One Day at Disney, you'll hear their stories and learn how they are making careers out of their own brands of creativity and imagination.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how the subjects of One Day at Disney put their unique talents to use for Disney's success in unexpected ways. Besides artistry and passion for their work, what other skills are on display in these biographies? What character strengths like teamwork stand out to you in the people you meet in these stories?

  • What role does technology play in these Disney employees' job descriptions? How have advancements forced some to adapt to new roles? How does technology improve customers' experiences either on the screen or in person at a place like Disneyland?

  • Kids: Do any of these careers intrigue you? What special skills will you bring to a job in the future? What education or training will help you get there?

  • Does this series intend to be an advertisement for Disney's products? In what ways does it serve that purpose, even if unintentionally? Did any of Disney's extensions (Good Morning America, Star Wars, Marvel, etc.) surprise you?

TV details

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