A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
A marine biologist's exploration of whale life across the seas has fantastic information about the nature of whale behavior. Put together in an accessible and easy to understand format, the documentary will educate and, hopefully, inspire kids to learn more about the natural world. A number of the positive messages and character traits shown by the whales, such as teamwork and curiosity, can also be applied to humans.
Whales exhibit communication, creativity, and -- along with humans -- teamwork and curiosity. Community is shown to be crucial to survival. Intelligence in nature is not only reserved for humans. Strong messaging about protecting nature and the planet.
Positive Role Models
Humans are shown to be respectful of whales and other sea life. They promote positive attitudes toward protecting the planet.
Violence & Scariness
An orca dies because it's beached on the shore -- despite the efforts of humans who try to save it -- with the whale's podmates waiting for them just beyond the surfline. While hunting, orcas hit a stinging manta ray with their tail fins in order to kill it.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Whale Wisdom is a superb documentary show that explores the behavior and intelligence of whales across the oceans. Narrated by veteran nature documentary broadcaster, David Attenborough (Our Planet, The Year the Earth Changed), rich photography of whales at work and play makes for intriguing and enjoyable viewing. As marine biologists track the whales as they migrate, the interplay between the humans and whales is gentle and respectful. When an orca whale is stranded on the coast, a group of marine biologists in Patagonia try to save it. Unfortunately, despite these efforts, the whale dies with his fellow whale friends watching on. A stinging manta ray is battered by orcas until it becomes immobilized and can be eaten. Viewers will come away from the documentary having learned a huge amount about these impressive creatures.
Is It Any Good?
This richly rendered, lovingly told, and expertly explored documentary follows whales from Polynesia to Norway. Whereas some nature documentaries strive to create connection, Whale Wisdom doesn't try to force the viewer to love whales. By observing their ability to problem solve, their tenderness and devotion to each other, as well as their sense of play, the viewer is allowed to naturally fall in love with these beautiful oceanic creatures. And by allowing its subjects to shine, the results are both beautiful and awe-inspiring.
Kids will be enthralled by the way that whales work together to solve problems. But they will also love seeing them do things that kids themselves love to do, such as surfing and singing. Parents will enjoy discovering bucket-list destinations -- the easy-going nature of the marine biologists make the locations seem very accessible. But the tenderness and capacity for wisdom that these great creatures are shown to possess is the show's greatest takeaway.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.