Benny the Barnacle Image

Benny the Barnacle

By Benjamin Franz | December 20, 2023

A pilot for an animated children’s show, Benny the Barnacle, presents a fascinating approach to Christian educational television. Created by Kevin Collier, the setup is familiar. A rambling stranger, Benny (Thom Stambaugh), is met by frenemy Killer the Krill (Jose Carlos Gutiérrez). Together, Benny and Killer confront a problem of the week. In seeking a resolution, they will visit the great Christian sage Obadiah the Clam (Robert Shepherd). Obadiah will instruct them from the New Testament. He will further confront the conventional wisdom and suggest a Christian answer to the problem.

“In seeking a resolution, they will visit the great Christian sage Obadiah the Clam…”

I found the animation style to be somewhat rudimentary. All the creatures look as marine life should. There’s something a bit uncanny and wooden about the movements that sticks out. Apart from that vague disruptor of the storytelling, I found this pilot to be gentle in its framing and teachings. The folding in of the Christian messaging is inoffensive. Unless, of course, you’d rather not instruct your children in Christianity. In that case, this series is not for you or your family. If you are looking for solid Christian educational television, this will fit the bill to a tee.

Benny the Barnacle is original and very sweet. I would recommend it for Christian families. This is exactly the gentle, G-rated edutainment you’ve been looking for. Everyone else, your mileage will definitely vary.

For screening information, visit the Benny the Barnacle webpage.

Benny the Barnacle (2023)

Directed and Written: Kevin Collier

Starring: Thom Stambaugh, Jose Carlos Gutiérrez, Robert Shepherd, etc.

Movie score: 7/10

Benny the Barnacle Image

"…gentle, g-rated edutainment..."

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