5 TV Shows You Can Chuck On That Are Kid-Friendly But Won’t Bore You To Death

Kids shows paramount+

I haven’t had the best experiences looking after kids. There was the time when I was forced to eat dry Weetbix in a Survivor-styled competition, or the embarrassing moment my five-year-old cousin chewed me out for not playing backyard cricket correctly. I’m also still haunted by the time I had to try and not lose any children while out at the movies. 

My maternal instincts are, uh, non-existent, so I’ve made a bold decision to make zero effort whenever I’m stuck with my friends’ kids going forward and use the TV instead. Paramount+ has some of the best kids shows that entertain my rather immature side, like SpongeBob SquarePants, which I’ll never get sick of watching. 

There are also some Nickelodeon classics like Kenan & Kel and Avatar: The Last Airbender on the streamer. If parents are concerned about screen time, just let them know it’s all educational. Kids these days don’t get to watch nearly enough Kel Mitchell, so you’re doing them a favour by exposing them to new worlds. 

In case you’re also in a pickle and need something entertaining to chuck on TV, I’ve rounded up a handy little list. Bookmark this page and thank me later. 

The best kids’ TV shows that are actually entertaining for adults

Knuckles at a bowling alley from the Paramount+ show
What it feels like to watch kid-friendly shows on Paramount+. (Image: Paramount+ Australia)

SpongeBob SquarePants

SpongeBob SquarePants. (Image: Paramount+ Australia)

SpongeBob SquarePants is iconic. I once tried to interview someone wearing a SpongeBob SquarePants suit during a Logies red carpet but was snubbed. Even so, they could never make me hate you, SpongeBob. 

It’s one of Nickelodeon’s biggest successes, spawning a successful Broadway musical and a bunch of movies. Without SpongeBob, Ethan Slater (who played the title character on Broadway), wouldn’t have landed a movie role opposite Ariana Grande. And without Ethan, we wouldn’t have Ari’s album “Eternal Sunshine”. So everybody needs to say thank you to SpongeBob for helping create one of the best albums of all time. 

It’s also SpongeBob’s 25th anniversary (yes, this makes me feel old), so Nickelodeon is planning on celebrating the show throughout the year. Though I’m sad to say I now relate more to grumpy Squidward than the jolly young sponge, it’s entertaining for both kids and adults alike. And TBH, kids tend to like any cartoons – so chuck it on and let their imagination run wild. 

Episode length: 24 minutes
Rating: Ages 5+

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. (Image: Paramount+ Australia)

I was actually named after a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. I’m not joking – my parents asked my siblings what they wanted to name me, and they were fierce advocates for Raphael or Donatello. Thankfully, they went with the more normal Rachel, but I get it. This show is awesome. Mutant turtles, adopted by a wise rat, that live in a sewer and eat pizza all day? Sign me up!

Paramount+ has a new TMNT show coming up called Tales of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Our fave Ayo Edebiri is in the cast voicing April O’Neil, and it’s set to premiere in 2024. It’s set to bridge the gap between the TMNT: Mutant Mayhem 2023 film and the upcoming sequel.

Episode Length: 24 minutes
Rating: Ages 8+

Sam & Cat

Sam & Cat. (Image: Paramount+ Australia)

Speaking of Ariana Grande, remember when she starred in Sam and Cat as Cat Valentine? The show revolves around Sam and Cat’s babysitting adventures. If anything, it’ll make you glad that you’re not stuck with some of their nightmare charges. 

It’s a classic Nickelodeon show, with lots of fun gags and sticky situations. Plus, you can sit back and be entertained by the desperate lengths Ariana went to when trying to hide the right side of her face. 

Episode length: 24 minutes
Rating: Ages 10+

CatDog

CatDog. (Image: Paramount+ Australia)

Whoever came up with the idea for CatDog is a genius, and I won’t hear a bad word about it. It finally puts the age-old argument of cat people vs dog people, because what if we’re all just CatDog people?

For some reason, Cat and Dog are siblings (??) and have totally opposite personalities, with grumpy Cat often exasperated by Dog’s impulsive decisions. The pair live in Nearburg, a town that’s mostly inhabited by animals. There’s a bit of slapstick cartoon mayhem, but it’s generally pretty kid-friendly. 

Episode Length: 24 minutes
Rating: Ages 7+

All That

All That. (Image: Paramount+ Australia)

This 2019 reboot of All That is comedic gold. Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell produced the show, so you know it’s got that classic brand of Nickelodeon humour. There are a few fun cameos for adults watching along, including the Jonas Brothers, H.E.R and (randomly) rappers Ty Dolla $ign and Tyga. There are a few spoofs of popular TV shows including The Masked Singer, Dancing With the Stars and Stranger Things.  

Episode Length: 23 minutes
Rating: Ages 6+

There are plenty of other options on Paramount+, and you can browse through all the classic Nickelodeon titles as well as its range of newer shows. If you’re indecisive as hell and can’t figure out which show to pick, put SpongeBob SquarePants on. It’s always a winner.

You can check out all the family-friendly content on Paramount+ here.

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