I love a good kids’ tv show as much as the next dad. But finding a good one, well that’s the trick.
Fireman Sam & Postman Pat
These two go together because I’d been ‘watching’ them for about a year before I realized they were separate shows, as evidenced by my kids catching me out singing ‘Postman Pat’ to the Fireman Sam theme song (“Pat is the postman next doooooor”) and wondering why it sounded so odd. I think it’s because they both drive red trucks and I wasn’t paying any sort of attention.
Until I saw an episode about cheese.
In this story-line they roll large, expensive and possibly delicious wheels of cheese down a hill in a race. It was most upsetting. That is not the way to teach children to show cheese it’s due respect.
This show is ideal for encouraging your children to exercise.
Oh, how I dislike the bratty, selfish, pampered little princess. Only saving grace is the camp narration by Julian Clary. But it’s not enough. I can’t stand this show. The little princess’s voice, heard through walls, is enough to make me frown and demand we turn the telly off and go outside to play.
So in that respect it’s a good show.
Shaun The Sheep
If I go to wander through the lounge room and this is on the telly, I will stop and stay until the credits. Finally there’s a cracker of a show which, unlike Peppa Pig, doesn’t make me feel guilty about eating bacon because the pigs in the show are dicks.
Although, if I think too hard about it, I’ll probably have to give up lamb. Lucky I’m not much of a thinker.
There aren’t many shows aimed at kids which can get me gaffawing like this gem of a show, or it’s younger cousin, Timmy Time. In fact, anything with Nick Park in the credits is worth a look.
Little Ted’s Big Adventure
I can’t get enough of this show and it’s got everything to do with the format of a fully grown man walking around talking to a stuffed toy.
The looks on the faces of the people driving the buses or boats or helicopters which slip into shot are priceless.
Very much ‘what the fark am I doing here’ and ‘I think this guy really does think the bear is listening’ looks.
Very much ‘I’ve told my friends I’m going to be on tv and now I hope they never, ever see this or I’ll be hearing about it for the rest of my life’ internal struggles.
Very much ‘I may have to move’ sorts of expressions.
Well worth keeping an eye out for.
Town? That’s not a town. You notice there’s less than ten people living there? Me guess is everyone left because Sportacus kept showing off with his jumps. Or alternatively there was some sort of chemical leak which started turning people’s hair bright pink.
The original Sportacus, who takes every opportunity to make me feel inadequate by doing a somersault and looking good in tights, was Magnus Scheving (European champion of, you’ll never have guessed this, aerobic gymnastics). He created, wrote, produced and starred in this show.
If that doesn’t get to you thinking this guy is an unnecessarily buff overachiever wait until I tell you it all started in his 20s when he and mate Fjölnir Þorgeirsson (I was going to suggest trying to say his name quickly three times but then realized I’d be impressed if you can say it right even once) made a bet they could each master a sport of the other’s choosing in three years.
The rest is history – Scheving became an aerobics champion and international fantasy standby.
But that’s not all. Scheving chose snooker for Fjölnir to master and his buddy went on to become the Icelandic snooker champion.
Anyway, it must be said Jim Carrey is excellent in his role.
Dibo The Gift Dragon
I find Dibo’s zipper really unsettling. I keep waiting for his insides to fall out. That’s the whole show for me. Just waiting for that to happen. And wanting to slap Bunny.
This show is one of my absolute favourites to watch with the kids. Not the DVDs with the new members (sorry guys, I’m sure you try hard) but the ones with the originals. I could watch these guys all day.
Well, not the guys so much.
Now don’t hate me because, let’s be honest, Charli, Kelly and Kathleen weren’t just there because they could sing, dance and smile at the camera – they were there to keep dads in the room with their kids in the same way the original Wiggles didn’t. So mission accomplished, girls. Well done.
And before you start thinking I’m some sort of perv I have one word for you women out there – Tim. Tim, who was so over the top incredibly cute they only needed one of him to balance the parental draw cards. Just Tim, because Nathan, not so much.
Although if I was pressed I’d have to say, even with his complete lack of boobies, Nathan was always my favourite Hi5er. That boy has talent.
Dora The Explorer
The saddest show on television, showcasing the trouble with the issue of absent parents where kids are left to wander off on their own. But that’s not the worst of it. I think Boots is actually representative of a much bigger problem.
I mean, who let’s their child wander over mountains, across lakes, into caves and through forests by themselves? I’m all for a bit of free range when it comes to (other people’s) children but this sort of poor supervision is bound to lead to trouble.
And in Dora’s case it clearly already has. Unicorns? Talking backpacks? Mermaids? The kid is on drugs.
Which brings me to Boots. Given the lack of parental presence and guidance I fear it’s going to take a while to get that particular monkey off her back.
I don’t understand why parents dislike this show. Admittedly, I have an affinity with Daddy Pig. He’s big, loves his family, snorts loudly and is a bit immature – as displayed by his love of jumping in muddy puddles. Plus, he wears glasses and isn’t fond of shaving. In essence, he’s me.
Possibly my favourite Peppa Pig moment is when the children are in class drawing pictures of vegetables to send in to Mister Potato.
“Peppa, what vegetable have you drawn?” asked Madame Gazelle.
“My Daddy,” says Peppa, “watching television.”
He’s sort of my hero.
I dare Mister Maker to set foot in my house.
I think I’d be hard pressed not to snot him. Because of him I’ve had to take a paint scraper to tables and chairs to remove glued bits of paper. Because of him we go through a brick of A4 paper a fortnight. Because of him I am chastized by my children if I’m caught throwing a toilet roll in the bin.
I confess I spend the entire Minute Make Time looking for inconsistencies so I can prove once and for all it’s been spliced together and actually takes him longer to make than said sixty seconds. The rest of the show I’m staring at Phil wondering if he’s really as sexy as all the mothers I know think.
Really? The voice doesn’t put you off?
Of course not. I mean, if the prepubecent voice of Jimmy Giggle doesn’t put you off (and I know it doesn’t) then this guy must be the Brad Pitt of children’s programming.
Maybe it’s because he’s so good with his hands?
If he ever comes here I’ll tell him to put up his dukes and I’ll let you know 😉
Little Charley Bear
Why can’t the kids love shows like this? While I would never buy a DVD of this show, I am always happy to watch it with the kids. Charley Bear is so adorable. And he’s not rude or loud or nasty. He just has a good imagination.
Wallace & Gromit
Now these guys know how to behave around cheese. But even if they rolled a wheel of Cheddar down a hill and into a lake I could forgive them everything because of the Thunderbirds inspired wake up routine. Now this is top shelf children’s programming.
If only I could convince my kids to watch it with me.
What’s your favourite (or least favourite) kids’ program?
“Raising a family on little more than laughs”
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