Even though we technically have a cable box hooked up in a remote corner of our house next to the dresser that leads to Narnia, our family has long ago cut the cable cord. Amy and I were streaming shows when Netflix only offered Red Dwarf and whatever Stephen King movie featured the young Drew Barrymore, and we haven’t looked back since.

This last week, though, we tried something new. BYU was playing Arizona on Fox Sports 1, which–as far as I could find–was watchable only through cable. Rather than call up Comcast and get an actual cable package, we gave Playstation Vue a shot.

Playstation Vue Sony’s terribly name internet streaming “cable” subscription. It’s like Sling TV, which has actually done enough marketing that even my in-laws had heard of it, except it cost more and has more channels. The prime example of more channels being Fox Sports 1, which is still unavailable through Dish’s Sling offering.

So for exactly one week during our Playstation Vue free trial, we had something equivalent to a tradition television service, ads and schedules and all.

We’ve since cancelled the subscription, but not before Finley discovered his “new favorite show” (his words): The Lion Guard.

For those not in The Disney Channel know, The Lion Guard is a spin off of The Lion King, where Simba’s son has grouped up with a motley crew of other animals including a cheetah, a hippo, some random bird, and a honey badger, to prevent predators from eating their sentient prey, thus foiling The Circle of Life.

If the show has one fatal flaw, it’s that somebody apparently murdered Matthew Broderick and replaced him with somebody that neither sounds or acts even remotely like him. Typical Disney Channel fare at least tries to replicate the voice of the original actors, but the creators of The Lion Guard were clearly too hopped up on pixie dust to care. Nala is wrong, too, but at least she doesn’t sound like an arrogant douchebag the way Body Snatched Simba does.

And speaking of phoning it in, the main character’s name–Kion–is seriously just Lion with the ‘l’ replaced with a ‘k’. Talk about lazy.

As for the actual plots of the shows (that I’ve watched, at least, which has already been quite a few over the past week), they’re really not too bad. The theme is that we need to work together and respect the our differences, even if those differences include an annoying honey badger who don’t give a crap.


The animated version is way cuter and less likely to sneak up on you in the night time and rip off your face.

I’m okay with that theme. Based on the current line of Disney Junior offerings, I think all shows either have to include a message of caring for others or believing in yourself. The Lion Guard is in the previous category, whereas the often insufferable Sofia the First is in the latter.

Is it the best children’s show available? No, definitely not. But it’s decent, especially compared to an endless loop of Doc McStuffins or YouTube Stampy Cat.

I’m a little worried what will happen when Finley realizes that he can no longer watch his favorite show. Especially since it’s one that I really don’t mind. But that’s a problem for the future. Who knows what could happen between now and then? Maybe I’ll meet a real lion on the way home and see if he’ll help me thwart the Circle of Life and protect me from the jaws of other predators. Like this one here:

Or maybe he’ll just try to kill me while my back is turned.