Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Liberty's Kids


Liberty's Kids is now available as a complete series boxed set. If you haven't heard of Liberty's Kids, it is one of the best educational programs out there about the Revolution (which we can't show at school because it's animated. Here is the description from Amazon.
History comes alive in this excellent Emmy and Humanitas Award-nominated 40-episode, animated series about the experiences of two young teens during the American Revolution. Far more than a simple chronicle of the battles and major events of the American Revolution, Liberty’s Kids tells the story of the cultural, scientific, political, and social forces that helped shape America’s fight for independence from the perspective of two young teens from very different backgrounds. Sarah is a young English woman living in America who maintains a strong sense of loyalty to England and James is a printer’s apprentice living the American dream, but feeling the constraints of British oppression. Working together on Benjamin Franklin’s newspaper the "Pennsylvania Gazette," Sarah and James often find their interpretations of current events differ markedly and the pair constantly grapples with tough issues like slavery, self-governance, fair representation, and the role of women in battle and politics. The juxtaposition of the two teens’ opposing viewpoints sparks spirited arguments in the series and inspires a fuller understanding of the complexity of the events and issues of the American Revolution for both Franklin’s newspaper audiences and modern viewers. Another strength of the series is that legendary historical figures like Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, John Adams, and Abigail Adams come across as real, believable people engaged in a genuine struggle to determine right from wrong and to act in the best interest of their families, community, and country. An amazing cast of voice talent includes Walter Cronkite as Ben Franklin, Dustin Hoffman as Benedict Arnold, Annette Bening as Abigail Adams, Billy Crystal as John Adams, Michael Douglas as Patrick Henry, as well as General Norman Schwarzkopf, Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Ben Stiller, Whoopi Goldberg, and many others. Bonus features include an interesting look back at the series with creator Kevin O’Donnell and others including executive producers Andy Heyward and Mike Maliani, story editors Doug McIntyre and Jay Abramowitz, and casting director Marsha Goodman. Also included are Benjamin Franklin’s Newsbytes, Continental Cartoons, Now and Then, Mystery Guest Game, original pencil tests, a 40-page booklet with a historical timeline, and a pullout poster with a United States map. Liberty’s Kids is highly recommended as great entertainment and important educational programming for ages 7 and older.

No comments: