It’s a long and storied tradition for children’s shows to simultaneously entertain kids but drive parents batty. They’re loud, they’re annoying, they’re stupid (look at you, Calliou), and honestly, there are way too many songs.
It turns out, though, that it doesn’t have to be that way – 15 parents are here to give you the gift of television that you and your kids can binge together.
15. Fuller House
“It’s nostalgic, kid-friendly, and modern all at once. Plus you can’t go wrong with Uncle Jesse.”
14. Adventure Time
“It has really great and complex teachings aimed towards kids but also a lot of adult humour. My husband and I watched it before having our son.”
13. Malcolm in the Middle
“It’s a great one. I was a 12-year-old when it first came out, so I found it incredibly relatable. I started watching it recently because I just finished Breaking Bad, and I’m a HUGE fan of Bryan Cranston (Hal).
It’s still incredibly relatable, but I relate more to the parents now. Also, it’s super silly, goofy, and sometimes cheesy, but also extremely witty and smart at the same time.”
12. Batman: The Animated Series
“Some of the episodes have really stuck with me, and it’s where the character Harley Quinn originated from (animated Harley = best Harley).”
“My husband and I are peak ’90s Nickelodeon kids, so we’ve been rewatching all the old shows with our 4-year-old. We get a lot of the adult jokes we didn’t get as kids, and our son likes it too.”
10. Sarah Jane Adventures
“It dealt with some surprisingly mature topics for a CBBC show, and handled them very well.”
9. Gravity Falls
“It’s a great show for all ages. It’s colourful and humourous with an overarching mystery that keeps you guessing. The main characters are three-dimensional, the villains are genuinely scary, and the themes are mature yet relatable to any age demographic.”
8. Greenhouse Academy
“It’s basically the TV show you know you wanted when you were 12, and it’s really hard to not get wrapped up in it once you’ve started. I’ve binged it. No shame.”
“It’s for really little ones, but I have laughed out loud at almost every episode. I recommend it to any parent getting sick of watching the same cartoons. I think I may like it better than my child.”
6. The Goldbergs
“Life in the ’80s with an overbearing mother, an emotionally difficult-to-reach father, and a legend of a grandpa. Told from the youngest’s perspective – it’s engaging, funny, with good lessons and morals.”
5. Steven Universe
“It’s a kids show but people of all ages can relate to it. It’s entertaining and very heartwarming. It touches on LGBTQ+ relationships, mental health, and emotions, among other things.”
4. Little Lunch
“My kids love it and so do I! It’s a mockumentary-style show detailing the lives of Australian primary school students during their break-time. It’s The Office for kids and it is hilarious!”
3. The Amazing World of Gumball
“It’s hilarious and discusses things everyone at any age goes through.”
2. Horrible Histories
“I rewatched it when I was in uni (as I had run out of sitcoms to watch) and I fell in love with it again!
It’s full of references only adults would get, which are bloody hilarious, is educational, and has songs that make it so uplifting and feel good!”
1. Anne with an E
“It’s light-hearted and entertaining but still has a level of maturity that is educational.”
I’m definitely going to put these on my list for when my kids get older – I don’t think there’s any way to make it work when your littles are so…little.
What’s your favorite show to watch with your kids? If it’s not on this list, please share it with us in the comments!