Sharkdog (TV-Y)

Streaming

Age 5+

Chaotic adventures with boy and his hybrid animal best bud.

Sharkdog” is a fast-paced animated kids’ series about a kid, Max, and his adventures with his new best friend, Sharkdog. He is (you guessed it!) a mix of a shark and a dog, with the ability to speak and understand Max’s commands. Integrating humor, teamwork and strategy, Max is able to work with his human friends, Royce and Ollie, to keep Sharkdog a secret and cover up his many messes. Although not based in clear educational concepts, the show is adventure-filled and fun. (Seven roughly half-hour episodes)

Available on Netflix.

Barbie: Big City, Big Dreams (TV-Y)

Streaming

Age 5+

Barbie musical promotes friendship and positive messages.

Barbie: Big City, Big Dreams” is an animated musical tale in the Barbie movie franchise. In this story, Barbie Roberts from Malibu (voiced by America Young) travels to New York City for a summer performing arts program. There she meets Barbie Roberts from Brooklyn (Amber May), and the two become fast friends. The movie has clear, strong themes about working hard to achieve your goals and keeping a positive attitude, even when things get tough. Both Barbies learn that competition isn’t about winning at all costs, but rather about trying your best. The cast is racially diverse, with strong female leads. But there’s not much diversity in size and body type. Potentially upsetting moments include a father speaking unkindly to his daughter. He also lies to try to give his daughter an edge in the competition. (63 minutes)

Available on Netflix.

Doogie Kamealoha, M.D. (TV-PG)

Streaming

Age 10+

Teen doc’s adventures are poignant, funny in great reboot.

Doogie Kamealoha, M.D.,” a reboot of the 1990s classic show “Doogie Howser, M.D.,” is about a 16-year-old doctor living and working in Hawaii. Lahela “Doogie” Kamealoha (played by “Andi Mack’s” Peyton Elizabeth Lee) is an excellent doctor: She’s calm in emergencies, confident and focused, but also kind and patient. As in many medical dramas, illness and death are frequent subjects, some injuries are shown and Lahela has to deal with the deaths of beloved patients. There are some moments based in stereotypes, like a dad sizing up his daughter’s date and jokes about Asian parents. Sex jokes include talk of puberty, what happens to tattoos after pregnancy, and mentions of “frontal grinding.” But overall, this excellent watch-together series is filled with positive messages, compassion and a loving family (10 half-hour episodes)

Available on Disney Plus.

Afterlife of the Party (TV-PG)

Streaming

Age 11+

Supernatural dramedy has emotional intensity, partying.

Afterlife of the Party” is about a young woman named Cassie (Victoria Justice) who dies in an accident and then has to come back to Earth to mend broken relationships. Some of her friends and family members are still grieving her death a year later, and her father appears to be depressed. The sadder parts of the story could hit some viewers hard, including when Cassie realizes all the things she’s going to miss out on because she died so young, and when her loved ones have to say goodbye for a final time. Her abrupt death comes in a briefly shocking moment the morning after some wild partying for her 25th birthday; scenes show young adults drinking shots and dancing on top of a bar. But other than that, there are just two scenes in which adults drink a glass of wine. Sexual content is also pretty limited: Expect some kissing and references to dating, liking a person, playing Cupid for others and being “blocked.” Cassie is depicted as shallow, focused solely on having a good time and looking perfect, and relying too much on social media. Her best friend needs help overcoming insecurities at work and shyness in her personal life. Language includes “sucked,” “fricking” and “God.” (109 minutes)

Available on Netflix.

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