A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that since this series centers on the predatory habits of some of the world's fiercest carnivores -- like the African lioness and the great white shark -- there's a lot of bloodshed. The death scenes may upset young and/or sensitive viewers. Animals are shown stalking, chasing, and killing their prey, and the victims often make anguished sounds as they die. This is definitely a know-your-kids situation -- if they're prepared for the harsh reality of nature, this series offers intriguing insight into animal life in remote areas of the world. But if they tend to sympathize with all creatures great and small, steer them to something less violent.
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What's the story?
Narrated by Alec Baldwin, PLANET CARNIVORE takes viewers into the remote hunting grounds of some of the world's ultimate predators, including the African lioness and the great white shark. Each episode focuses on a different predator, with cameras capturing the intensity of the ongoing quest for food from the hunters' point of view, following as they identify their target, position themselves for the attack, and move in for the kill. In addition to offering fascinating footage and high-quality computer images that help depict pertinent geography and topography, this informative series also delivers facts on the animals' evolution, the delicate balance of their environments, and various factors that threaten their supremacy. For example, one installment about a lion pride that dominates an isolated volcanic crater in East Africa follows a lioness named Malkia, whose mastery of the art of stalking and killing her prey puts her atop the local food chain. Viewers watch as she and her female descendants work hard to feed their growing pride with wildebeests, zebras, and gazelles -- all while defending themselves against threats of disease, competition from other lions, and more.
Is it any good?
Planet Carnivore chronicles the harsh reality of nature and offers a dramatic look at what it takes to survive in the wild. But as educational as the series is, the relatively high level of gore (for a nature program, that is) means that parents may want to be cautious about sharing it with sensitive kids.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how animals are designed for their surroundings. How do animals in different ecosystems adapt to their surroundings? What physical attributes do different species have for survival? How do these defense mechanisms protect them from predators? What dangers do the predators themselves face? How would the ecosystem function if they became extinct? How is this show similar to and different from other nature programs?
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