Day Two: It Begins

Note: I may have inadvertently suggested yesterday that I thought I was funny, and that I might be funny in upcoming blog posts.  That was erroneous.  

So, kids’ shows.  What’s up with those?

I’ve mentioned that Badger watches a lot of TV, and for the most part I try to watch it with her.  I figure that’s at least a fig leaf over letting her sit glazed in front of The Backyardigans for hours at a time.*  But that means that I have seen what feels like every.single.episode of every.single.show on Nick Jr. at least a billion times.  Maybe more.  And THAT means that I have spent a lot of energy trying to find something intellectually stimulating about the ∞th viewing of a show meant for two-year-olds.

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about the fact that actual grown adult people make the shows — it’s especially striking with the shows that are at least partly live action.  Really, it all started when I noticed Plex’s legs.  They are really skinny, and if you watch them it becomes really, really obvious (and not a little creepy) that there’s a person in there.  So I spend a lot of time thinking about the costume and the man inside; what it’s made out of, where the eye holes are, how you get in it, how hard it must be to dance in.  What it smells like.

Sesame Street is another good one to ponder, because there are clearly so many people involved.  It’s fascinating to watch a two-minute sketch about how babies should shake their rattles and roll, and realize just how many grown people had some creative input: writers, puppeteers, puppet makers/dressers, set designers/dressers, prop managers, voice artists, lighting/foley/all that other crap.  Plus it’s 30 years old, so you can never be sure if something weird you see is an artifact of a long-ago era or a decision based on modern sensibilities.

Also: the Wonder Pets.  How do they even make that?  The internet won’t tell me and I really want to know.


*She’s not really the ‘glazed’ type.    TV mostly just takes her down from her natural 9.5 to about a 7.

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