Viewtiful Joe

Common Sense Media says

Subpar Power Rangers rip-off has muddled messages.





What parents need to know

Positive messages

The hero is lazy; a girl runs away from home after fighting with her mom; the villains constantly resort to unprovoked violence.


Monsters threaten children; a truck is thrown with people in the cab; swords are used; and there is a lot of fighting.

Not applicable

No profanity, but the hero's speech pattern is, like, totally exaggerated '90s slacker-speak, dude -- not really the kind of thing many parents want their kids to emulate.


No reference to specific products per se, but materialism is rampant. Cell phones play an important role in one episode; cheeseburgers are the hero's motivation in another.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this series features a somewhat lazy superhero with questionable motivations. While Joe is a reluctant role model, his sidekick Blue, when he appears in an episode at all, always nudges him in the right direction. Parents should also be aware that the show's villains include a gigantic, weapon-laden lizard, a bat-like creature with a French accent, and a half-man/half-shark monster that could be quite frightening to younger viewers. A quick preview might be a good idea.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Joe is an average guy whose girlfriend, Silvia, is whisked away to another dimension called Movieland and held captive. Joe's favorite superhero, Captain Blue, gives Joe super powers, transforming him into \"Viewtiful Joe\" so he can go off in pursuit of her captors. His sidekick is a pre-teen called Captain Blue, Jr. -- a kid version Captain Blue.

Is it any good?


VIEWTIFUL JOE is a terrible cartoon on a number of levels: The animation is shoddy, the dialogue is limp and forced, the pacing is awkward, and the plots don't make any sense. That said, the sad fact remains that a lot of younger viewers might really like it. It's a flashy, fight-filled, Japanese-style action show led by a super-cool hipster dude who slings one-liners and loves a good cheeseburger. What's more, no explanation is ever given as to why Silvia has been taken, why Joe is given his powers, or what the name "Viewtiful Joe" even means. Beyond that, Silvia doesn't even appear in many episodes -- Joe seems to just go on various nonsensical adventures involving random characters, and never in Movieland -- making the show's opening credits exposition of the "main" plot a complete waste of time.

With its aggressive fight scenes and slangy language, Viewtiful Joe seems aimed at 12- to 14-year- old boys. The problem, however, is that the show's messages are so simplistic, and the dialogue so lame, that no child past the age of 8 would want to sit through it. Children younger than 8 will probably feel mature when they watch this "big kid" cartoon, but some sequences are oddly terrifying -- for instance, a scene on a ghostly train in which a room full of floating toys suddenly turn on Joe and attack him for no apparent reason. This is the stuff nightmares are made of.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the different characters' motivations from episode to episode. For instance, why might a child think running away from home is a good solution to their problems? What other solutions could be better? Parents could also talk about the importance of working toward a desired goal, rather than just doing as little as possible and simply hoping for the best. When Joe really wants a cheeseburger, is it okay to ignore his responsibilities? What happens when we ignore the things that need to be done?

TV details

Cast:Jason Palmer, Katie Leigh, Tomokazu Seki
Genre:Kids' Animation
Topics:Superheroes, Friendship
TV rating:TV-Y7-FV

This review of Viewtiful Joe was written by

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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.

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Kid, 8 years old June 22, 2014


Viewtiful Joe is inappropriate. The show is also innertaining. Also, the show is a little bit cheesy.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 15 years old Written byEvan182 March 3, 2010

Viewtiful Joe

This is alright for a kids show. I haven't seen it in a while. But common sense got the review wrong. The show was based on a gamecube game. So it's consumerism in a way, but the game wasn't produced anymore when the show was on air.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much consumerism
Adult Written byNasami April 9, 2008

Life is Viewtiful!

Viewtiful Joe is a awesome show, made just to have fun. Sadly it's a victim of american censorship, reducing the plot, cutting required episodes needed to explain and just making things much more stupid. To understand the american dub of the show, you'd need to play the game. The basic premise is, that Joe, while at a showing of his favorite movie, witnessed Silvia get kidnapped by the villian, soon after Joe was brought into movieland by Six Majin, the giant robot of Captain Blue. Given a V-Watch by the aging hero, Joe is to become the new hero of movieland. While I will admit, Joe is lazy, a big goofball, and a total kid at heart, he takes his job as the hero of movieland very seriously, and has a good and kind heart, fighting the forces of evil and rescuing Silvia and her father Captain Blue, who has been trapped in movieland. As someone who has played both of the games and seen the original Japanese release of this series, the presentation it got in america is disipointing. It's been dumbed down, and alot of the elements of the series have been removed and changed. And the villians, though "Scary" to some are almost tradisional in the story of good versus evil, presented in black and white like in the movies. Children can and will realise this, and root for the hero. People need to stop trying to protect their children from common sense, and just sit down and enjoy the show.


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