Oswald

TV review by
KJ Dell Antonia, Common Sense Media
Oswald TV Poster Image
Witty, gentle, surreal; ideal for preschoolers.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

Parents say

age 2+
Based on 6 reviews

Kids say

age 2+
Based on 17 reviews

We think this TV show stands out for:

A lot or a little?

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

Positive messages

Oswald and his friends are a very egalitarian band. Lessons about friendship, risktaking, and following instructions are skillfully and subtly delivered.

Positive role models & representations

Oswald is a strong example of someone who uses perseverance.

Violence & scariness
Sexy stuff
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, drugs & smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Oswald encourages, in its own small way, a daring and adventurous spirit in very young children. It's focused on big-picture lessons -- being willing to try new things, perseverance, following instructions -- but the teaching is subtle and very much a part of the story.

User Reviews

Parent of a 2 year old Written byAsterix December 23, 2013

A great show for 2 year olds (and older)!

This is a wonderful tv show for toddlers (2 years and older). We kept our son from watching any tv until he turned two, and this was the first show we allowed h... Continue reading
Adult Written byvolgirl April 9, 2008

Disappointed with language

I think Oswald is an adorable show. I've always been a fan of Fred Savage. However, we have had to ban Oswald in our house. Unfortunately, Oswald's... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byBigbillyboy August 20, 2012

This was the best show on Nick Jr.

This show is sooooooo witty and funny! It is also a lot of gentle fun for the little ones.This show is about a blue octopus named Oswald,who does peaceful fun t... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old August 16, 2010

Two thumbs up!

This was another one of my favorites growing up (and like blue's clues, I still watch it haha). The characters are so polite and everyone is very kind. The... Continue reading

What's the story?

OSWALD follows the daily adventures of Oswald (an octopus) and his friends Henry (a penguin) and Daisy (a tall, fully mobile flower) in Big City. Oswald's dog is a hot dog on a leash, the ice cream vendor is a snowman, and the owner of the diner is a butterfly (and the mother of a caterpillar). It's all gently loopy -- funny to an adult in a surreal way, rather than an over-the-kids'-head way. Oswald is voiced by Fred Savage, and in every episode he sings a sweet, catchy tune about what the gang is doing.

Is it any good?

The animation is slowly paced, as suits the audience -- there are no sudden cuts or jerky movements. Scenes remain static for relatively long periods, but because such care has been taken with the background of Big City itself (houses are shaped like everything from stacked books to ice cream cones, passersby like walking cacti and gingerbread people), it's pleasant to watch, even for an adult. Even the most exciting episodes are handled in a very gentle, calming way -- there may be a giant snowball rolling toward Big City, but Oswald, Henry (David L. Lander), and Daisy (Crystal Scales) are always confident they can save the day. Most parents won't mind sitting down once in a while to share this one with their preschooler.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about each day's adventure in Oswald. Do you think Henry really wanted to try some of the new things Oswald was doing, even though he insisted on doing things "just like always"? If Daisy had followed the directions, would they have gotten stuck? Does Oswald love Daisy even though she's impulsive, and Henry even though he isn't adventurous at all? Why?

  • How do the characters on Oswald demonstrate perseverance? Why is this an important character strength?

TV details

Character Strengths

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