To say the Octonauts have captured my kids’ imaginations is an understatement, and I don’t think my children are alone! I’ve overheard mums talking about the program, and kids role playing their favourite characters. The Octonauts follows a team of adventure heroes who dive into action whenever there is trouble under the sea. In a fleet of aquatic vehicles they rescue amazing sea creatures, explore incredible new underwater worlds and often save the day before returning safely to their home base, the Octopod.
So what is it exactly that makes this show stand out, and attract such a wave of support from parents and children? Here are 8 (hehehe…) reasons why Octonauts are awesome:
- Graphics. This program is a visual feast. The talented duo from Meomi create a stunning CGI underwater world which combines true aspects of aquatic life with imaginary elements.
- Soundtrack. Composer Darren Hendley (who also wrote the music for Olivia) brings to the program a high quality score reminiscent of any sci-fi-action-adventure film. The music isn’t limited to opening and closing credits either. It features throughout each ten minute episode, adding to the excitement.
- Non-fiction content. Each episode features an underwater animal in its natural habitat. Along with the Octonauts, kids learn about interesting behaviours or unusual characteristics of each animal.
- Tried and true formula. Anyone who has watched their share of sci-fi adventures will recognise the similarities between the Octonauts and the crew from the Enterprise, or SG1, or…. (Yes, I am married to a geek). Strong leader + shy medic + scientist-with-a-Scottish-accent + fearless adventurer = awesome team!
- Intelligent entertainment. Children’s programs which are “dumbed down” make me groan. I believe television shows for kids should be language-rich, introduce interesting vocabulary, and model excellent use of conversation. Octonauts more than meets my criteria in this department.
- Target age. There often seems to be a lack of good quality entertainment appropriate for kids in the 4-7 age range. Between toddlers and tweenagers is a whole stage (which seems to be disappearing) called childhood!! This program is ideal for lower primary aged kids. Yay!
- Environmental awareness. I’m always happy for my kids to watch a television program which encourages them to get back outside after it’s finished, exploring the natural world and the creatures in it. The “Explore! Rescue! Protect!” tagline of the Octonauts is relevant in any habitat.
- Understanding. This program isn’t about good-guys and bad-guys. It’s about good-guys and misunderstood-guys. This is particularly important in the context of real animals. There are no evil animals. Sometimes creatures can harm us, but it is not because they are “bad” in any way. Usually when animals hurt us it is because they are afraid and are defending themselves or their young.
Are your kids fans of Captain Barnacles, Kwazii and Peso? The first DVD is now available exclusively to ABC shops and ABC Online, and will be available at all good retailers from the 6th October. Thanks to my friends at Roadshow and ABC4Kids I have FIVE copies of the Meet The Octonauts DVD to give away. Simply leave a comment sharing what you or your children like about this program. Usual rules apply: one entry per person, Aussie residents only, comp closes Wed 28/9/11 8pm Qld time.
*Disclaimer: I received a review copy of the Octonauts DVD for this post and the usual admin fee applied.