Prehistoric Park

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
Prehistoric Park TV Poster Image
Time-traveling animal rescues are hokey at best.

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 7+
Based on 7 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Offers an educational look at ancient animals.

Violence & Scariness

Computer-generated animals fight and eat each other and occasionally run into humans, leaving them bruised and bleeding.

Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the stars of this show are computer-generated versions of prehistoric creatures, including dinosaurs, massive insects, and giant crocodiles. The animals are shown in re-created versions of their natural habitats and at actual size (proportional to humans), and they're often aggressive toward humans and vicious with each other (biting, goring, and eating what gets in their way). Although the graphics aren't first-rate, the result is real enough to frighten young viewers and sensitive older ones. On the flipside, the show does allow viewers to visualize the world and its inhabitants as scientists theorize it may have been millions of years ago.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 10, 12, and 14 year old Written bykphilbin September 12, 2014

Our family loves this series

This series is very fun. You learn about amazing animals & what the earth was like in the past, and it's a really fun premise. Nigel's enthusi... Continue reading
Adult Written byevansdino April 9, 2008

my 2year old loves this show

my 2year old loves this show. he loves dinosaurs and when this was on he stayed focused!! i know this is "fake and somewhat different show. but i would rat... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old April 9, 2008

I like this show, very entertaining!

This is really fun to watch and rather educational. He goes back in time to capture Dinosaurs and bring them back to his "Theme Park" so to speak. Tho... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old December 30, 2008

Fantastic!

There is some violence (creatures hunt and eat another, they might attack the explorers leaving them cut or bruised, some animals might fight each other) but it... Continue reading

What's the story?

PREHISTORIC PARK uses documentary-style filmmaking to follow real-life wildlife expert Nigel Marven, a \"wildlife adventurer\" who travels through time to \"rescue\" ancient creatures from extinction, taking them to a present-day wildlife park he's prepared. Time portals allow him to lure the creatures (including dinosaurs, giant insects, and ancient birds) to Prehistoric Park, where an army of personnel is busily replicating the animals' natural habitats. Head park keeper Bob (Rod Arthur) and veterinarian Susanne (Suzanne McNabb) work with Nigel to monitor the arrivals' well-being. If the animals don't seem to be thriving, the team experiments with changes of scenery or lifestyle until they find the right balance to placate the creature. A voice-over narrator (David Jason), meeanwhile, explains the characters' every move.

Is it any good?

The fact that Prehistoric Park plays out like a documentary gives it the feel of a credible wildlife show -- but the plot is basically science-fiction. The time-travel angle results in a slew of unanswered questions for those with a logical bent, which might be forgivable if the show's graphics didn't leave so much to be desired. Scenes in which Nigel observes the computer-generated animals are momentarily intriguing, as he offers facts about their physique, eating habits, and natural predators, as well as the probable causes of their extinction. But these fleeting moments are often followed by Nigel moving in for closer contact, which leads to some pretty cheesy chase scenes. Viewers who do manage to suspend their disbelief will probably pick up some interesting facts and enjoy the images of ancient creatures in replications of their natural habitats, Prehistoric Park's format makes it so unbelievable that it's sometimes tough to figure out where it intends the line between science and fiction to fall.

Some of the show's face-to-face encounters with vicious, fairly realistic-looking creatures could very well frighten young viewers. Parents will want to watch with their grade-schoolers so they can help sift out the facts from the fiction.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the extinction of prehistoric animals. What does it mean to be extinct? What would life be like if some of the prehistoric animals (dinosaurs, giant crocodiles) still existed? What are the different theories behind extinction? Which theories seem the most likely to be true?

TV details

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