Original Air Date: January 22, 2016
Hello all and welcome back to our regularly scheduled Pride Lands programming. Here in New York City, we’re about to get hit by a huge snow storm. Luckily, much like Bunga, I’ve decided that I am all knowing and have thus been giving out sagely advice to my neighbors. “Yes, you should definitely drive fast on the snow.” “Oh absolutely, hide from the snow storm in a tree.” “Park your car right in front of the snow plow so that they know who’s boss.” This week saw rain clouds sweeping the Pride Lands, which was bad enough, but added to this was the fact that Bunga got some bad advice that he was good at giving advice, and now animals are jumping off cliffs, eating poisonous flowers and burying their heads in the ground. Looks like The Lion Guard has their work cut out for them!
I went into this episode a bit wary as Bunga, while a likable character, can be a bit much if given too much screen time. Surprisingly, he wasn’t all that bad. Essentially, the idea behind this episode is that unless we think things through before we take action, we’re bound to make silly mistakes and possibly even hurt others. I like the general concept, and I also like that members of The Lion Guard will be their own worst enemy at times. This is a show for kids, so it’s important to know that sometimes the jerk on the playground is ourselves.
What turned out to be a rough spot in this week’s episode was the fact that all the other animals in the Pride Lands are so dumb! They so freely take not just bad advice but life threatening advice with no questions at all and it gets to be a bit unbelievable at times. One animal literally jumps off a cliff because Bunga tells him to. Really?! I suppose that people in real life often take things at face value without asking the right questions, so perhaps I’m just annoyed with society and not necessarily that zebra who might be in competition with Ono for most annoying voice.
I often think of this show in terms of My Little Pony, as I think they are about the same age range, so I recognize that some episodes will inevitably edge more on the childish side than others. This was one of those episodes. The music was the least memorable so far, but I will note that while I wanted to dislike the episode, by the end I found that it all fell nicely into place. The climax sees a huge wave of water rushing to catch the Lion Guard and other animals they are sworn to protect. It’s quite epic and has a good actiony feel to it. I think that if the moral of the story had not come through so nicely in the end, I would think much less of the episode but the point of “Think before you act,” really shines and I think that, were I a child, I would certainly get a lot out of this presentation.
Overall, I think this was probably the weakest episode so far, but only by a small bit. What it lacked in the first half, was made up for in a compelling second half and Kion once again showing growth and the ability to keep his head on his shoulders. Despite Bunga ruining the day, he also was quick to not run from the mess he created. He stands his ground and helps make it right and this turns out to be just as important as the central message of thoughtfulness.
So how about you guys? Loving the show? Hating the show? Feeling odd cramps because of the show? Let me know in the comments down below.
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NOTE: Obviously all the photos are courtesy of Disney Entertainment and I would never in a million years claim them as my own. That being said, all are actually taken with my phone during our viewing in order to capture the moment in a slightly different way than originally intended.