Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Dora the Explorer

Dora the Explorer

Spring 2001 Television
Ages: 2 - 6 yrs.
Producer: Nickelodeon
Network: Nickelodeon
Review:
My daughter adores Dora the Explorer, which makes it more than good enough for me. It inspires her to laugh, to sing along and to ask questions, which is what any good kids show should do. "I like Dora; she's fun," three-year-old Jamie says. Her brother, five-year-old Max, likes it too. "She asked us to count from one to five in Spanish and also had us help her find a map so she could get to her grandma's house. It was pretty cool." Indeed, it is cool. Dora the Explorer is interactive entertainment, inviting the viewer to join in the fun, to sing along, to count and so on, as Dora - an animated girl - embarks on various adventures. The tone is playful and the animation is bright, with bouncy music and pretty memorable songs. Key words and points are repeated often enough to drive home the message, but not to the point of overkill. In that map sequence Max mentioned, the map sings and very clearly explains who he is, what he does and how he does it. Various episodes explore different themes, and they're all done with the same inventiveness and sense of inclusiveness. It hardly matters - and this is a good thing - that Dora is a little Latino girl. To my kids, she's just another kid.
Ian Spelling   ©2001 Parents' Choice
Ian Spelling has spent two-plus decades working as a freelance journalist, the past 12 of them as a full-time freelance writer covering movies, television, music and comedy. He's written for The New York Times Syndicate, Reader's Digest, OnDirecTV, SCIFI.COM, TV Guide, The Bergen Record and many other outlets over the years. Spelling, who hails from Merrick, New York -- the home of Amy Fisher, Deborah Gibson and Lindsay Lohan -- currently lives in northern New Jersey with his wife, Linda, and their two children, as well as the world's best dog, Oreo.


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