TaleSpin

 
(i)

 

A new chapter for Jungle Book's Baloo.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

A main female character owns and ably runs her own company and is a devoted single mom to her daughter. Teamwork helps the gang solve problems.

Violence & scariness

Occasional cartoon rough and tumble, explosions, or crash landings with no injuries. Weapons (swords, guns) are used at times, but no one is shown hurt.

Sexy stuff

Kisses on the cheek are rare and brief.

Language

Characters say "dumb" and "stupid" and use put-downs like "lowlife excuse for a pilot."

Consumerism

Just the usual Disney associations.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that there's little to worry about in this fun, adventurous Jungle Book spin-off aside from cartoon rough and tumble, brief explosions, and crashes -- none of which results in serious injury. The central female character is a devoted single mom and hard-working businesswoman. Subject matter sometimes touches on things like ghosts, kidnappings, and potential death, but it's all so light that it won't affect young viewers. Parents who watch with their kids will get a kick out of fun cultural references -- like the mysterious "Bearmuda Trapezoid" that's said to claim the lives of pilots like "Amelia Airhart."

Kids say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

What's the story?

Disney's animated series TALESPIN -- a spin-off of The Jungle Book -- follows a new chapter in the life of Baloo the bear (voiced by Ed Gilbert), who now lives in the Pacific Islands and flies a cargo plane for freight shipping company Higher for Hire. Carefree Baloo -- who used to own the company and his beloved plane, the Seaduck -- now works for businesswoman Becky Cunningham (Sally Struthers), hoping to eventually buy back the aircraft. In addition to being Higher for Hire's CEO, Becky is also a loving single mom to daughter Molly (Janna Michaels). Baloo and his young navigator -- an orphan and ex-air pirate named Kit (R.J. Williams), who looks up to "Papa Bear" as a father figure -- haul cargo to and from the nearby islands, doing their best to avoid run-ins with the villainous air pirates and their nefarious leader, Don Karnage (Jim Cummings). Much to Becky's chagrin, the boys are easily distracted from their assigned task; when they lag behind schedule, she's apt to find them at Baloo's favorite hangout, Louie's.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

TaleSpin is a lively, engaging series that's just plain fun to watch, and Jungle Book fans don't have to worry that the cross-over stars have been compromised in any way. The minor changes that were made were necessary: Baloo now sports four-fingered hands (instead of paws) to man the plane, for example, and the revived Shere Khan (Tony Jay), who appears occasionally in the role of a ruthless business tycoon, now walks upright and dons clothes.

While the show isn't heavy on actual lessons, little of its content is likely to worry parents of grade-schoolers. TaleSpin is so entertaining, in fact, that adults may find themselves drawn in -- those who are will pick up on occasional clever cultural references and characterizations that escape young viewers (for example, an eccentric hippopotamus/airplane designer named Howard Huge).

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about responsibility. What does it mean to be responsible? Why is it important to follow through on your commitments? Kids: What responsibilities do you have? How do you make sure you stay on track with them? How do you feel when your jobs are done? Do you ever put them off? What happens when you do? Families can also talk about how the characters on the show compare to their original Jungle Book versions.

TV details

Cast:Ed Gilbert, R.J. Williams, Sally Struthers
Network:Toon Disney
Genre:Kids' Animation
Topics:Adventures, Friendship, Wild animals
TV rating:TV-Y
Available on:DVD

This review of TaleSpin was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Great handpicked alternatives

  • The Lion King does Looney Tunes.
  • More Arabian adventures with a wisecracking Genie.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Parent of a 17 year old Written byBonkersfan1995 March 22, 2013
 

Entertaining and Delightful Show

Ha-ha-ha! I love Talespin because it's my favorite Disney Afternoon cartoon 2nd to Bonkers! Baloo the Bear dresses up as the Pilot with Kit Kloudkicker.
Parent Written byAunt Dee September 13, 2011
 

I love Tale Spin

I used to watch this when I was a kid
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Digital Compass