Correct me if I’m wrong, but, the entire TV-Y7 generation is on drugs. Well, indirectly. I would not necessarily call myself a purveyor of quality children’s programming. The extent of my parental television oversight sounds something or exactly like this, “What’s it called? WHAT? Ok, ok…can you spell it out? Does the part on the bottom say G or Y7? Oh, it says PG. Well, let me think. Ok, go ahead. Let me know if anyone dies in the first 10 minutes!” Done and done.
I generally prefer the possibility of sudden death because the other options are the saccharine pushers of the pre-k meth variety. It’s like cotton candy all night long and no grown-ups to tell you that you absolutely can not eat that entire tube of Aquafresh even though the stripe in the middle that “fights cavities” tastes exactly like bubble gum.
Gone are the days of Mr. Rogers and the envelope pushing social/educational platform of that giant bird and his invisible friend. Now, it’s all animation featuring giant heads on stick bodies, emaciated ponies and strange men in bright orange jumpsuits. No, not prison dudes. The OTHER strange guy in the bright orange jumpsuit.
Frankly, if I was worried about my children’s very fragile psyches, I’d probably do something about it. And, if you’re planning on telling me to throw my television out of the window and take in the mating ritual of the rare and extremely beautiful red breasted heron, knock it off. I believe I will not.
The thing is, television itself will turn my children off of television just by being television. They will grow weary of heroines with little to zero heroic qualities. The guy in the bright orange jumpsuit will prompt even the most glazed over eyes to ask, “Why are there only two lines of lyrics in this song?”. Like that drunk guy you once saw throw up into a plastic grocery bag in the back of your mutual friend’s car. Yes, THIS is why you don’t drink Goldschläger. Your brain remembers. Your brain also remembers bad t.v. because your brain is sometimes more intelligent than your choices even despite your best efforts to the contrary. My children will survive Dora the Perpetual Bad Reader of Maps and Yo Gabba Crappa and My Little Anorexic Pony and Strawberry HuffsPaint. They will!
I might have been too busy to say no to crappy television, but, I’m never too busy to notice when the eldest says, “This is DUMB.” and then grabs Harriet the Spy off of the shelf and digs in. Successful parenting by virtue of her own brain. So yes, I let go. I gave in. The crap, it flows-eth from my set. Call me a renegade, but when you get to here, “This show is always the same. I’m going outside.”, I’ll be right here to raise a glass to independent decision making by default and to the horrific writers of current children’s programming who are making television distasteful one boring, vapid episode at a time.