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 StarBeam is a preschool series about a young girl with a superhero alter ego who defends her town from an array of colorful villains and other menaces with the help of two friends. The stories are very simple and typically involve only one- or two-step solutions and little effort. Even so, the fact that Zoey makes a point of taking a breath and making a plan before proceeding sets a good example of mindfulness and effective problem-solving for young viewers. With comical rather than scary villains, a vibrant animation style, and a female hero with a can-do attitude, this series will entertain preschoolers even if it doesn’t make a lasting impression on them.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
In STARBEAM, 8-year-old Zoey (voiced by Nahanni Mitchell) has a secret. A secret identity, in fact; one that helps her keep her community of Somerset safe. When the town is threatened by mischievous villains or some other trouble, Zoey transforms into StarBeam, a pint-sized superhero with an arsenal of powers. Together with her best friend, Henry a.k.a. "Boost" (Dean Petriw), and her bird, Kipper (Sam Vincent), StarBeam leaps into action to defend the people in her town.
Is it any good?
The gregarious female lead helps elevate this formulaic series, but it still struggles to distinguish itself from the many other superhero-style shows meant for preschoolers. Zoey is everyone’s friend and a big fan of her hero mom, WonderBeam (Diana Kaarina). In carrying on the family tradition of helping others, she learns problem-solving skills and teamwork with her best friend, Henry.
That said, there’s a notable simplicity to StarBeam that’s most evident in how Zoey counters the actions of her villainous nemeses. Most situations are diffused with just one or two quick power plays by StarBeam, requiring little thought or planning at all. The end result is always happy, and good always wins the day, but overall the series feels overly simplistic and superficial compared to other preschool picks.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what defines a hero or role model. Do all heroes wear costumes and have super powers? For those who don’t, what about their actions makes you call them heroes? How can you show your gratitude to heroes close to home?
Kids: Zoey uses mindfulness to calm herself when things get stressful in StarBeam. How does doing so help her make a more effective plan against the villains in town? What are some strategies you can use when you need to calm your thoughts?
What are some of your favorite shows with main characters who are girls? What are some of Zoey’s most prominent character strengths? When does she demonstrate impressive courage? How does she compare to your other favorite TV females?
Our editors recommend
For kids who love preschool fun
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