Weird, True and Freaky

 
Strange animal tales focus on shock value.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Overall, the show sensationalizes and exploits the unfortunate nature of some of its animal subjects. But experts make things somewhat educational by explaining scientific terms like "cyclopia," and computer graphics help illustrate the narration.

Positive role models

The experts who participate are knowledgeable, but the sensationalistic context doesn't do too much for their status as role models.

Violence

Mention of animal slaughter, stillbirths, and fatal genetic mutations. Some segments discuss surgical procedures and mention animals eating and/or attacking people.

Sex

Some episodes touch on animal birth/mating facts.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that, overall, this docuseries emphasizes shock value over education -- while there are some scattered opportunities for families to learn about animal behavior and science, they're usually overshadowed by the greater factor of curiosity. The amount of over-the-top/iffy content varies by episode, but it's safe to say that sensitive young viewers might be disturbed by scenes of mutant animals (a cyclopic piglet and a dog with no front legs, for instance) or stories of animals eating humans.

What's the story?

WEIRD, TRUE AND FREAKY shines a spotlight on some of the strangest biology and behavior ever recorded in the animal world. From a man-eating snake to a cat with two faces, these creature curiosities are often stranger than fiction. Throughout the amazing (albeit often over-the-top) tales, experts are on hand to explain the science behind them.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

If the likes of Ripley's Believe It or Not! tickle your curiosity, this series is sure to do the same. Its stories are certainly fascinating, and the often-bizarre images are sure to stick with you long after you've turned off the television. (After all, who's going to turn down the chance to see a giraffe with a crooked neck or a six-legged cow?)

But if you're seeking a quality show to share with your whole family, this isn't it. Its focus on shock value sometimes feels as exploitative as a carnival sideshow, and young kids especially may be more disturbed by the images than intrigued by their curious nature. There's not really enough educational content to make it worthwhile for older kids, either. So if animal oddities are a fascination for you, this is a guilty pleasure probably best indulged on your own.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about whether they think this show takes advantage of its subjects. Does the fact that they're animals make it different than if they were human? Why or why not?

  • What other types of entertainment are based on people, places, or things that are different from the norm?

  • Do you enjoy comedy that pokes fun at certain races or socioeconomic classes? Why or why not?

TV details

Cast:Cynthia Stringfield, Jill Helms, Sophia Yin
Network:Animal Planet
Genre:Reality TV
TV rating:TV-14

This review of Weird, True and Freaky was written by

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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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, 10 years old September 4, 2012
age 9+
 

its good for ages 9 and up

Its a good show but the episode i watched had a cow with an extra leg a pig with one eye. things like that. but other episodes are fine. they sometimes say animals that are used for medicine and there are a lot of other episodes too but i just havent watched them yet.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Kid, 8 years old January 6, 2011
age 8+
 

Trust The Name Of This Show!

I think Weird True and Freaky is a good show but can be disturbing at times. I think that even though I am eight, the show is iffy for age eight. I watch the parts that don't totally freak me out. One episode was about creatures that were medicine for people. Those creatures are creatures that I really don't want to use as medicine for me, such as bees and leeches. That episode got changed to TV 14. All but the medicine episode are TV PG. If you can handle TV PG, you should watch the show.
Kid, 10 years old August 6, 2010
age 7+
 
I like the show. It teaches u stuff.

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