The Powerpuff Girls
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this cute, highly stylized series thrills the senses with its strange characters, funny situations, and lots of lowbrow humor. The message throughout is that violence is fun -- even if it's sugar-coated with giggles and hearts and high-pitched baby voices. Some of the evil characters are scary to look at, with sharp teeth and claws as well. The series swings from innocence to extreme violence in no time flat, so be on guard when it's playing.
What's the story?
Blossom (voiced by Cathy Cavadini), Bubbles (Tara Strong), and Buttercup (Elizabeth Daily) were brought into the world quite by accident when klutzy Professor Utonium (Tom Kane) spilled a bottle of Chemical X into a formula that was intended to make "little girls." After the accident, sugar and spice and everything nice morphed into three fighting dynamos called THE POWERPUFF GIRLS, whose goal is to "save the world before bedtime."
Is it any good?
Sure, they're cute, and the animation is nicely stylized, but it provides a thin veil for the series' violent undertones. Some might say that The Powerpuff Girls is meant to empower little girls -- to give them their own action heroes. But back here on Earth, it seems like the show's goal is to turn them into fighting machines. Whether this type of empowerment is helpful or harmful is something to discuss. Checking in with your kids about how they feel after watching a scary or brutal episode might be a way to gauge whether this show is appropriate for them. Otherwise, consider saving it for an age when they can differentiate between play and unusually violent behavior.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the show's violence. Why do all of the girls' problems need to be solved via mayhem and destruction? Is it the villains' fault, or could the girls resolve their conflicts in other ways? Do you think viewers are meant to take the violence seriously, or is it all "good cartoon fun"? Can the littlest viewers understand the distinction?