Roary the Racing Car

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
Roary the Racing Car TV Poster Image
Parents recommend
Spunky speedster teaches kids social values.

Parents say

age 2+
Based on 6 reviews

Kids say

age 5+
Based on 9 reviews

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

The series promotes positive values like friendship, helpfulness, problem-solving, creativity, respect for the environment, and healthy lifestyles. Characters are dominantly male.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Roary himself is cheerful and friendly, if a bit impulsive, and the rest of the cast of vehicles is well-delineated and given distinct personalities. The bummer: Character traits come with stereotypical accents, i.e. the temperamental racing car is Italian, the futuristic computerized drift racing car is Japanese. Another bummer: The only female vehicle on the show is a bright pink and purple ditz with a Pepe Le Pew French accent.

Violence & Scariness

Race cars sometimes spin out or crash on the track, but they're never hurt.

Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this lively, colorful series for preschoolers includes strong positive messages about topics like sharing, communication, making good choices, and problem-solving. Preschoolers will have so much fun watching Roary's adventures that they won't realize they're picking up important social lessons along the way, and parents can rest assured that there's no iffy content to worry about.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byRecessGymClass2 November 27, 2016

This is crap!

This show has a terrible moral for kids. The say you can talk to cars. No, in real life, cars can't talk, be alive, or show feelings. If it begins happenin... Continue reading
Adult Written byScarlet Singer November 19, 2015

Truly a Number One star

If you see a kid's show character go to a big charity such as Children's in Need, you know they're great role models.
Teen, 16 years old Written byQueenie Guldbaek June 13, 2020

No1 star of my childhood

This show is very cute and great for school-age children; I am biased because I enjoyed this at ages 5-7. It's got some great lessons regarding trust, frie... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byBadgersRool March 25, 2021

Not as good as Thomas or Bob the Builder, but it is more diverse than you think

I don't think the stereotypes are bad. They're just ways people act, and they exist in reality too. It also shows that there's nothing wrong with... Continue reading

What's the story?

ROARY THE RACING CAR follows the antics of a young single-seater named Roary (voiced by Maria Darling) and his circle of friends at the Silver Hatch race track he calls home. Each day brings new adventures for Roary, Cici, Tin Top, Drifter, and Maxi, who discover that where there's adventure, there's opportunity to learn about themselves and their world. Roary's impulsiveness sometimes gets him into sticky situations, but he's always willing to learn from his mistakes and make things right for himself and his friends in the end.

Is it any good?

Preschoolers will love tagging along with this colorful cast of speedsters on their fast-paced escapades, and they'll relate to the kid-sized problems that pop up along the way. Roary's penchant for trouble allows plenty of room for learning lessons in friendship, courage, respect, making good choices, and other important social lessons. Plus, the fact that Roary often turns to paternal auto mechanic Big Chris (Peter Kay) for guidance when he's stumped shows young viewers that it's smart to ask for adults' help in a crunch.

With its fun stories and energetic music, Roary the Racing Car is sure to win big with little viewers. The series' only flaw is the disproportionate gender distribution in its characters. In a move that subtly reinforces stereotypes in the traditionally male-dominated field of racing, the show only includes two female characters: Cici, the pink stunt car, and Marsha, the race marshal.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the problems that Roary and his friends encounter. Kids: What troubles did Roary face in this episode? How did his actions contribute to the problem? How did he show that he was taking responsibility for what happened? How did his friends help him set things right? Have you ever been in a situation like Roary's? Who do you ask for help when you need it?

TV details

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