TV review by
Common Sense Media Editors, Common Sense Media
Pokémon TV Poster Image
Popular with kidsParents recommend
As much about marketing as it is imagination.

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 35 reviews

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 182 reviews

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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

Honor, respecting elders, team work, friendship all themes. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Main characters are good sports, good friends, and value their Pokémon. 

Violence & Scariness

Pokemon characters are fighters; laser shots, explosive battles, punching, kicking, humorous explosions common. No major injuries or bloodshed. 

Sexy Stuff

As is typical with anime, female characters wear short skirts, breast-enhancing tops.


Occasional name-calling like "twerp" and "knucklehead."


Characters featured in endless games, toys, etc. all over the world. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the long-running Pokémon series is based on characters from a popular video game, and is part of a giant licensing juggernaut. The Pokémon are kid-appealing, but the series features lots of fantasy violence, and pits the cute, monster-like characters against each other on behalf of their trainers. There are some positive messages (teamwork, sportsmanship, respecting elders), but it may be too intense for younger children. 

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 12-year-old Written byGhirahim May 18, 2018

I Think We’re Talking About the Indigo League, But I’m Not Sure.

The only Pokémon anime I’ve watched is the original Indigo Leauge (From way back when). My advice is, if you wouldn’t want your kid to watch anime, then don’t l... Continue reading
Parent of a 4 and 13-year-old Written bydirelan March 8, 2014

Values the importance of friendship and teamwork

I remember watching this show when I was in high school. There are important lessons in each episode. I have been able to go over the lessons with my son, and t... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old April 15, 2014

It is not inappropriate.

This isn't an inappropriate show and they don't "summon" their pokemon they work together as a team with lots of love and care for each othe... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old March 21, 2016

Pokemon is great for Adults and Kids

Normally Anime is based around adults and teens but this show did an excellent job on making it for kids too! The first few seasons had some sexual references a... Continue reading

What's the story?

The Japanese anime series POKÉMON follows the adventures of Ash, his friends, and their group of cute and highly skilled monster-like creatures that battle in tournaments on their behalf. Ash travels throughout remote, mysterious lands and works hard to become a highly skilled Pokémon trainer. Throughout his journey he meets old pals, makes new friends, and works with his Pokémon to help them use their different powers to fight when summoned. Ash and his friends must also face Team Rocket, whose mission is to steal all Pokémon in a quest for global domination.


Is it any good?

Over the years, the energetic, imagination-filled, Japanese-inspired fantasy series has cut across cultural, gender, and age barriers to captivate a global audience of girls, boys, and even adults. But like any product that inspires obsessions, it has received its share of criticism. Folks may also find the franchise's massive commercial appeal disturbing, especially since the show is mainly geared towards kids. 

The whole concept of human characters summoning subordinates to battle on their behalf may be troubling to some. This can potentially send iffy messages to children with pets, too. But despite the endless fantasy violence, Pokémon attempts to promote messages about choosing the right path in life and resolving differences peacefully--before the fighting starts. 


Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the popularity of Pokémon in the United States. Why do people of all ages find it appealing? What are the most popular Pokémon? Why?

  • What are the differences between Pokémon and real-life pets. How do Ash and his friends care for their Pokémon? How do we care for pets differently? Why are the Pokémon loyal to them and fight on their behalf? How about Team Rocket? Can we ever expect animals to fight on our behalf?

TV details

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Themes & Topics

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