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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 the game show Splatalot is a game show with very little iffy stuff, but not a lot of substance. Kids face a series of physical obstacles and some opponents armed with slippery slime and water, so the nature of the challenges favors body strength, determination, and even basic luck more than thoughtful strategy -- but there's still some value in seeing how the contestants cope with victory and defeat. Expect some mild trash-talking on the part of the hosts and the adult cast members, plus many replays of the kids' missteps, designed to maximize laughs. Though it's not intended to hurt the contestants' feelings, it does offer a great opening to talk with your kids about bullying.
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What's the story?
SPLATALOT is a medieval-themed game show that challenges kids to conquer a series of obstacle courses in and around a castle setting on the way to retrieving a golden crown, thus claiming the title of king or queen. Twelve contestants must maneuver over rolling barrels, scale slippery walls, and span long gaps in bridges on their way to their goal; the top performers from each challenge earn the right to compete at the next level. Their journey is made more difficult by assaults from the castle's gladiator-style Defenders, who pelt them with water and slime to slow their advance.
Is it any good?
There are no surprises in this frantically paced game show, which is bound to entice kids on sheer messiness alone. After all, what isn't fun about watching a bunch of kids wade through soap suds, get doused by slime, and bump around on obstacles that toss them into the water? Not much in the eyes of 5- to 8-year-olds especially, and even if Splatalot isn't exactly good clean fun, it sure doesn't miss the mark on entertainment value.
Splatalot is a bit like the candy of the game show family; it's enticing, fun, and colorful, but there's not a lot of substance if you really think about it. Bottom line? It's fine for occasional viewing, but all your kids will get out of it is a burning desire to turn your house into an oversized obstacle course, complete with neon slime.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about competition. What do you learn by taking part in contests? How does facing off with an opponent encourage you to sharpen your skills? What can be learned from losing?
Kids: Do you think the participants enjoy having their mistakes and tumbles replayed for viewers' enjoyment? Would you be OK with that? How is this type of scenario different from bullying?
How do you overcome obstacles in your life? Are there certain people or challenges that give you the most trouble? Who do you turn for help or guidance?