By Tribune Staff
NASHVILLE, TN — The latest production from the Obamas’ Higher Ground productions takes a celebratory tone while emphasizing the importance of civic duty. “We The People,” which was released Sunday and is now available on Netflix, mixes music with animation while teaching its audience a lesson in each episode. The total series is 40 minutes, and every episode examines a different aspect of the government. It was created by Chris Nee (“Doc McStuffins”) and executive produced by Kenya Barris.
A new set of voices will be on hand for every episode. Some of the other contributors include H.E.R., Cordae, Janelle Monae, Nate “Rocket” Wonder, Andrae Day, Adam Lambert, Amanda Gorman, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez. Some of the subjects that are covered include courts, The Bill of Rights, the three branches of government, citizenship requirements and taxes.
Each episode is presented in a four-minute framework that aggressively combines all the elements, blends entertainment with education, and doesn’t neglect information for performance clout. Still, it doesn’t get bogged down in semantics or an overly academic approach either, offering enough lively moments to balance out the heavier segments.
There are 10 musical performers, with the animation duties divided between the Buck and Titmouse houses. There are also 10 different directors, most notably “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’s” Peter Ramsey. Both former President and First Lady Barack and Michelle Obama are among its array of producers. Though not perfect, “We The People” does a respectable job of highlighting the plus and minuses of government and the obligations of its citizens.