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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 this show's high-flying martial-arts action is sure to be a hit, particularly with boys. Violence is kept to a minimum, as all of the physical exchanges are obviously choreographed and never lead to injuries. The acting is a little cheesy, and the premise is hokey, but it will find a niche among 6- to 8-year-olds who aren’t yet aware of these pitfalls. On the plus side, there are some sweet messages about finding inner strength and relying on friends, and there’s something to be said for the show’s references to the fact that heroes can be found in unlikely places.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Life will never be the same for Mike Fukanaga (Ryan Potter) after a mysterious letter from his deceased grandfather leads him to a secret facility and brings him face to face with a hologram of his granddad (George Takei), who tells him that he’s descended from a line of powerful ninjas. Suddenly he and his best friends, Owen (Carlos Knight) and Amanda (Gracie Dzienny), are immersed in training and learning the ways of the ninja. And when trouble calls in their town, they’re always poised to leap into action and save the day.
Is it any good?
SUPAH NINJAS is a fast-paced show that inspires viewers to believe in the existence of heroes in the most unlikely places. Just as class outcast Mike discovers the inner strength he needs to assume his new role, parents can help kids begin to understand their own personal talents and how those gifts can be used to help others. Another bonus to the series is the well-rounded female lead role of Amanda, who’s said to be a popularity queen but then follows her own heart and chooses to be friends with social fringe dwellers Mike and Owen.
Although the show's plot is rooted in martial arts and physical exchanges between the heroes and a rotating cast of bad guys are common, parents don't really need to worry about the content having a negative impact on young viewers. Even kids will be able to see that these battles are in fact a series of choreographed moves from truly skilled actors, and the fact that no one is ever the worse for wear greatly helps tone down the impact of the violence. All of that said, the show isn’t likely to strike a chord with more worldly tweens, who may be turned off by the fairly cheesy acting.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about martial arts. Are you familiar with martial arts of any sort? If so, how did the content in this show compare to what you know? Do you think it stays true to traditional martial arts? How do different styles of martial arts compare to each other?
Kids: What challenges did the characters need to overcome in this show? How do they draw strength from each other? What other sources of guidance do they have? How do these sources influence them? Who are your most influential role models?
What does this series say about friendship? What challenges do Amanda, Mike, and Carlos face in their relationship? How is their friendship strengthened by the adversity they face? Can the same be said about your friendships? How are yours similar or different from this one?
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