Schwartz.World!

Educational Tv

Created: Tue Oct 27 2020 06:35:25 GMT-0400 (Eastern Daylight Time) Edited: Tue Oct 27 2020 Tags: tv,kids,muppets,complaints,covid

COMMENTS::https://api.github.com/repos/ianschwartz/site/issues/8/comments

TAGS::tv,kids,muppets,complaints,covid

I don’t want to be one of those complaining old men, constantly bemoaning every difference that I see between the world of my youth and that of today.I’m not that old anyway; at 38 I consider myself to be just barely reaching adulthood.

I have two small children of the girl persuasion, ages 2 and 4. The pandemic has changed so much about their lives, but one change is that we all have a lot more screen time than before.

Children’s programming is shit today. Boring computer-generated animation, interchangeable characters with impossibly cheerful voices. Most of it seems lazy and half-baked. You could take the plots and characters from any number of shows and switch them around and it would all fit fine. I’m talking about shows like PJ Masks, Paw Patrol, and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.

Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is a particularly bad offender, because I have such strong childhood attachments to the source material. It might be the worst show ever made. It’s weird, but not in a fun way like Yo Gabba Gabba. Completely humorless.

Even Sesame Street, of which I am a staunch advocate, uses obvious filler sketches like Journey to Ernie, which is absolute garbage.

Contrast that to the shows I watched as a kid. We’ve been playing Fraggle Rock, The Elephant Show, Magic Schoolbus, Beakman’s World, Bill Nye the Science Guy. They’re just better.

The Fraggles are such well-developed characters, and the show does such a good job of showing the fragile beauty of their ecosystem. There are layers of information that can be gleaned on subsequent rewatches. As children mature, there are jokes and nuances they start to grasp. The show is actually entertaining for adults.

Contrast that to The PJ Masks, a show that makes me want to actually put my head through the TV.