Pete the Cat

Ages: 0 - 5Producer: Amazon Studios Rating: TV Y - All Children

Pete is one cool young cat, livin’ life and navigating new experiences that, for all their fanciful elements, will still feel familiar to young viewers.

Each half-hour episode of this animated series includes two separate stories in which music plays a big part – not surprising given the talent providing voices for these characters.  Singer/songwriter Elvis Costello voices Pete’s dad, and Pete’s mom is voiced by Costello’s real-life wife Dianna Krall, a Grammy-winning jazz vocalist.

Pete’s guitar teacher, Neville the hound dog, narrates much of each tale, clarifying plot points and conveying what Pete is thinking, since this cool cat communicates non-verbally with shrugs, nods, and facial expressions.

Plots teach kids about cooperation and problem-solving.  In Kitty Catsclaw Reunion, the gang chooses a name for its band and in the process discover a surprising fact about a famous but elusive singer.  In  Play Ball! the kids get a lesson in good sportsmanship when a fun game of baseball takes on an overly competitive tone.   Pink Pajama Pals helps kids see how something as simple as Pajama Day at school could end up unintentionally excluding friends.  And, in Meteor Shower, Pete deals with disappointment when he can’t stay up all night to see a much-anticipated meteor shower.

This Amazon Prime Video series offers smart scriptwriting and useful social and emotional lessons.  While its quirky, laid-back pace and cool blues-y vibe may not appeal to every taste, it’s certainly a refreshing contrast to other more frenetically paced kid-vid selections.


Gina Catanzarite ©2020 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 14 Emmy® awards, 37 Emmy® nominations, a Matrix award, 3 Golden Quill awards, 2 Pennsylvania Broadcaster’s Association Awards, 8 Telly Awards, and a screenwriting grant from the Theatre Association of Pennsylvania, among her professional honors.