Parents' Guide to

The Wild Thornberrys

By Betsy Wallace, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 7+

Globe-trotters explore strange new worlds.

The Wild Thornberrys Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

Community Reviews

age 6+

Based on 11 parent reviews

age 6+

It's great!

I like the dad. He's just funny. Anyway, Great nick show. I recommend it!

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
age 5+

Fantastic show

This is consistently entertaining; we watch it again and again. It's such a unique show, with characters and themes unlike any to be found elsewhere. Unfortunately, the Debbie character is a bit of a 20th century stereotype of a teen girl. She does have her good moments, such as the Australian surfing episode, though.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (11 ):
Kids say (13 ):

The premise of the series is tailored to a child's imagination and teaches kids to appreciate animals, to be curious about different ways of living and the vastness of the world. The Thornberrys live a fantasy life, for sure, but the series explores the real customs of many different cultures and the real behavior and habitats of countless kinds of animals.

The Wild Thornberrys also delves into family relationships. OK, so a wild boy found in the jungle and a chimp happen to live with this family, but Eliza and teenager Debbie (Danielle Harris) still struggle to overcome sibling rivalry, learn responsibility, and form independent identities. The show presents a nuclear family living an alternative lifestyle; as a result, even episodes with traditional growing-up themes come across as fresh and new compared to many home and school-centered family shows. Also worth noting is the married relationship here, which is surprisingly rich and multidimensional compared to most marriages seen on television. The Thornberry parents (Tim Curry and Jodi Carlisle), true partners and great role models, include their family in the realization of their own dreams and in the pursuit of travel, creativity, and adventure.

TV Details

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