12/1/14

Amazon Originals for Kids . . .

I blissfully cut the (cable) cord in the late-fall of 2011. I stopped watching the boob tube and all its conventions and trappings before you escaped your father's groin, kiddo. And I'm happy to say I did it. I am not even sure if I watch any less TV now than I did then but I watch TV more on my terms.

I don't even mean that in the buh-bye commercials way (but, seriously, I can't watch regular TV anymore . . . the ad breaks make me insane) but more in the quality/content/context way.

The most violent things I've seen in the last few years on TV are knocks over the head on Murder She Wrote, a handful of whackings and gang-land killings on The Wire, and the slaughter of animals and people on The Bible (seriously - WAY more violent, per capita, than The Wire).

One of the other things that I love about not having cable is TV for my daughter. Now. I'm not going to pretend to be some holier-than-thou that won't let my kid watch any junk (she is obsessed with My Little Pony and these annoying dudes from the UK that play video games all day (I actually believe it is a profession/job for them) and post them to YouTube). I mean that more in the sense of I could not stand MOST of the programming on Nick Jr. or Disney Channel or the various offshoots, re-brands, and age-appropriate-sub categories of each. Just horrible crap.

So now we have the PBS app. The "Kids" section of Netflix (they have some great Disney movies and some TV shows that don't make me nutty to watch (or to let her watch)) and - my favorite - Amazon Originals for Kids.

They have this great mix of shows for kids in that 8 - 12 range (those very few 'tween years when cartoons about letters and numbers and before shows about sex and drugs are appropriate) and they all have good stories and casts (as kid-filled casts go) and they have science or storytelling artistry and they are charming.

The kiddo's current favorites are Annedroids and Gortimer Gibbon's Life on Normal Street. Annedroids is about a trio of 11-year-olds including an awkward girl who lives with her Grandmother, a kid who is new in town with his single-TV-reporter mother and a genius who lives with her always-home-but-never-around father (also a genius) and the androids the girl has made and the science and technology adventures the three kids have. The other is about a trio of 11-ish-year-olds who lives on a street of eccentric characters with his two best friends (including one who is trying to cut back on profanity (a kid after my own heart) by using the names of vegetables in their place and the adventures they have on and around the block.

All you need to enjoy either show is Amazon Prime (or the free month of preview you can get just for asking). My daughter has binge watched both seasons of both shows - a few times (for Annedroids).

Check them out if you are tired of Miley Cyrus and Phineas and Ferb or Good Luck Charlie on Netlfix.