Published Jul 12
Keep the kids from going Looney, with these awesome kids series and movies for every age
ZOG AND THE FLYING DOCTORS | All ages
Zog and the Flying Doctors is a 26-minute BBC animated short based on the beloved book by Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Axel Scheffler, a sequel to the International Emmy-winning Zog that continues the adventures of the clumsy but eager-to-please young dragon.
As a flying doctor trio, Zog, Princess Doctor Pearl and Sir Gadabout care for creatures, from a mermaid to a unicorn to a sneezy lion, but when bad weather forces them to land at the palace, Pearl is locked up by her uncle, the king...
ESME & ROY S1-2 | Recommended for ages 3+ by Common Sense Media
Sesame Workshop’s animated series, Esme & Roy, follows the adventures of a little girl named Esme and her bestest, fuzziest monster friend, Roy, as they babysit the little monsters of Monsterdale... and help them handle monster problems like fussy eating, thunderstorms, sadness, anger and frustration. This sweet preschool show is packed with positive messages and tools for little ones and parents dealing with all those big emotions.
Picking up its fourth Emmy nomination this year, the series has a five star rating on Common Sense Media, where the consensus says, “They're an unusual pair, but these sweet sitters are just what the doctor ordered… Esme & Roy's thoughtful approach to self-awareness and mindful behavior makes it an excellent tool for families and caretakers to use in teaching similar skills to kids.”
JUNGLE BEAT: THE MOVIE | Recommended for ages 5+ by Common Sense Media
Produced in Cape Town by Sunrise, Jungle Beat’s adorable animations have become a YouTube phenomenon, racking up over six million subscribers and nearly three billion views, as well as a host of awards. Now the animation’s stars, Munki and Trunk, have their own movie, which screened in competition at Annecy International Film Festival last year.
When a homesick alien crash-lands his spaceship near their jungle home, Munki, Trunk and their animal friends need to get him back to his ship and teach him about friendship and fun - before his father can take over Earth.
TROLLS WORLD TOUR | Recommended for ages 6+ by Common Sense Media
Trolls sequel Trolls World Tour is a feel-good animated family musical that sees Poppy and Branch set out to unite the six musically diverse troll tribes and stop Rock Queen Barb and King Thrash from turning everyone into rock zombies.
Oscar nominee Anna Kendrick (Love Life, Pitch Perfect) won a 2021 Kids Choice Award for Favourite Voice from An Animated Movie, edging out co-star Justin Timberlake. Also listen out for the vocal stylings of Golden Globe nominee James Corden, Golden Globe winner Rachel Bloom (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend), Oscar winner Sam Rockwell (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), and Grammy winners George Clinton, Kelly Clarkson, Anderson .Paak, and Mary J. Blige.
LOONEY TUNES CARTOONS S1 | Recommended for ages 7+ by Common Sense Media
Warner Bros. and HBO Max are bringing back one of the best things on TV ever - Looney Tunes Cartoons! And they’re daffier, crazier, and loonier than ever, with 20 all-new episodes (and more in the pipeline) that see Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Sylvester and Tweety, the Road Runner and other favourites up to their old antics with hilarious misadventures inspired by the original classic Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies.
Voice legend Eric Bauza, who voices Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Tweety and more, (and can be heard in Teen Titans Go!, and Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) just picked up his fifth Emmy nomination for his work on the show, which has also been nominated for Best Editing For A Daytime Animated Program.
SONIC THE HEDGEHOG | Recommended for ages 8+
The world needed a hero – it got a hedgehog. The sixth-biggest movie of 2020, action-adventure comedy Sonic the Hedgehog is based on the iconic Sega video game franchise. Small, blue and super-speedy, Sonic has embraced his new home on Earth, until he accidentally draws the attention of evil genius Dr. Robotnik, who wants to harness Sonic’s power to achieve world domination.
As Dr. Robotnik, Jim Carrey won a 2021 Critics Choice Super Award for Best Villain, while Emmy winner Ben Schwartz (the official voice of Dewey Duck since 2017, and Parks and Recreation’s Jean-Ralphio Saperstein) won Best Animated Performance at the 2021 Hollywood Critics Association Awards for his role as Sonic. South African-born child actress Melody Nosipho Niemann won a 2020 Joey Award for her role as Jojo.
The movie also stars Saturn Award, Teen Choice and MTV Movie Award nominee James Marsden (X-Men, Hairspray) and Tika Sumpter (Mixed-ish, Gossip Girl).
THE HARDY BOYS S1 | Recommended for ages 10+ by Common Sense Media
If your family loved the spy drama Alex Rider, it’s time to book some TV time with the tweens and teens again!
Nominated for Best Young Adult Series at this year’s Emmys, The Hardy Boys is a high-action update on the classic franchise that sees teenagers Frank and Joe set out to uncover the truth behind a tragedy that has changed their lives forever, only to discover there’s something far more sinister going on in Bridgeport.
Common Sense Media recommends the show for ages 10+, cautioning that this “throwback drama is tense, a bit violent, [and] with tween snark,” but, they say, “It feels nostalgic for parents and will remind today's kids of a less edgy Stranger Things.”
BUT THESE HOLIDAYS ARE REALLY LONG….
This is just a taster of the kids gems on Showmax. Also look out for 2021 Emmy contenders Craig of the Creek (nominated for Best Children’s Animated Series), SpongeBob SquarePants (voice actor Tom Kenny, aka SpongeBob himself, is nominated for Best Performer In A Daytime Animated Program), and The Tom and Jerry Show (nominated for Best Music Direction For A Preschool, Children’s Or Animated Program), not to mention ever-popular series like Paw Patrol, The Loud House, and many more.