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

Paw Patrol

Paw Patrol

Spring 2015 Television
Ages: 2 - 5 yrs.
Producer: Nickelodeon
Rating: TV Y

Nickledeon premiered this half-hour CGI-animated adventure in 2013. It's aimed at young pre-schoolers and features the heroic adventures of pups who, together with their human pal Ryder, make up the PAW Patrol. But these pups do a lot more than just fetch sticks! As the theme song says, "Whenever you're in trouble, PAW Patrol will be there - on the double." If citizens of Adventure Bay need help, the pups assume their hero identities as firefighter, police officer, construction worker, water-rescuer, helicopter pilot, and even a recycling expert! Together, the skill sets help them address just about any challenge.

The PAW Patrol's battle cry is, "No job's too big, no pup's too small," and indeed, their missions take them over land, under the sea, and into the air to help their community, using lots of high-tech gadgets and gear in the process. The peril is fairly tame here and based on mostly imaginary threats, for instance, in "Pups Save the Penguins," they battle a band of mischievous penguins and have to figure out how to return them to the South Pole. In "Pups and the Lighthouse Boogie," citizens are stuck at sea as a storm threatens but with the help of a friendly walrus, everyone ends up safely back on dry land. And in "Pups Save Ryder," the PAW Patrol has to save its leader Ryder when he attempts a rescue on his own and ends up stranded and in need of help himself.

PAW Patrol is very similar to the many other animated children's programs that humanize animals or machinery and then puts them in situations where they cooperate and learn about the value of kind deeds and friendship in the process. However, the show does have some clever word-play and fun puns in the script; the pups have adorable mannerisms; and the messages are moral and upbeat. If your child loves dogs and needs a little dose of adventure in their animated entertainment, put PAW Patrol on the "OK, it's fun" to watch list.

Gina Catanzarite   ©2015 Parents' Choice
Gina Catanzarite is an award-winning television producer, writer, teacher, mom and media consultant in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She began her career in 1987 and counts 9 Emmy awards, 26 Emmy nominations, a Matrix award, two Pennsylvania Broadcaster's Association Awards, 8 Telly Awards, and a screenwriting grant from the Theatre Association of Pennsylvania, among her professional honors.

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