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Planet Earth II
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The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Planet Earth II (the sequel to the award-winning Planet Earth documentary series), is a family-friendly series with strong pro-environment themes. Animals are sometimes shown engaged in mating rituals or predatory behavior, but this is all offered in context. However, younger or more sensitive viewers may find some of the hunting scenes disturbing.
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What's the story?
Hosted by Sir David Attenborough, PLANET EARTH II is a nature documentary series that highlights the beauty and fragility of the planet’s natural ecosystem. A sequel to Planet Earth (2006), it uses advanced media technology to capture the day-to-day activities of animals in different habitats. From leaping lemurs in Madagascar and violent kimono dragons in Indonesia, to a buller’s albatross in New Zealand patiently waiting for its mate, the series offers a uniquely intimate view of the animal kingdom across the globe. Throughout it all, it reminds us of how humans are impacting them, and shows us how different species adapt environmental changes in order to survive.
Is it any good?
This spectacular series, which is the first produced in ultra high-definition, is a visual masterpiece filled with colorful, close-up footage. Thanks to advances in recording technology, including drones, it allows viewers to appreciate the Earth’s wide-range of natural habitats in more intimate and unique ways, often from the animals’ point of view. Meanwhile, Attenborough’s narration describes these animals and their behaviors in ways that humans can easily relate to.
In addition to being beautifully produced, Planet Earth II offers a strong pro-environmental message. It gently -- but consistently --highlights the way different animals are being forced to adapt and evolve in order to survive the changes to their habitats caused (indirectly or otherwise) by humans. It also notes the limited number of certain species, some of which are dangerously close to extinction as a result. The overall series celebrates the diversity and wonder of the animal kingdom, and warns us about what we have to lose if we fail to protect it.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the use of advanced technology to create documentaries like Planet Earth II and other media. What are some of the benefits of using things like ultra high definition and camera drones? Drawbacks?
How many different species of animals exist around the world? Are their animals featured in the Planet Earth documentaries that you’ve never heard of? Which ones? How are changes to the planet impacting how they live and grow?
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