And now, with kids shows, we’re afraid to touch on subjects like death, divorce, and homosexuality, lest the parents phone up and throw a bitchfit. Television was educational not in that it taught us how to count by twos or what the word indigenous meant, but in the way it taught us life lessons in a way we were able to see, understand, reference and relate to. Television shows like this were guidebooks for parents, good tools to use when having a talk with kids about the death of a family member, friend, or even a pet. Saying things like “remember how Chuckie found that picture of his Mommy, and his Dad showed him all the things she used to have, and the poem she wrote for him?” gets the kid in the right mindset- and now?
Now we’ve got shows based on “randomocity”, slapstick humor without purpose, and full thirty minute slots packed tight with mindless one-liners and lessons in how to catch jellyfish with a net if you live underwater as a yellow sponge.
I’m not saying we didn’t have our set of shows like that, with silly nothingness, but there were so many more shows with valuable lessons than there are today. That’s why shows like My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, are receiving such volumes of attention: they are heading in the right direction, brushing subjects that other kid’s cartoons neglect for fear of backlash.