Timmy Time, Ziggy Marley and the power of CBeebies
What do you call a parent who never uses TV as a filler whilst taking 5 to make a brew, go for a wee or count lines and grey hairs?
They are either lying or they are the kind of uber-organised automaton that can do Year 7 maths homework without flinching and has never popped a dummy in their mouth to clean it. (Sshh, that’s just between us. )
Didsbury Son is hooked on Cartoon Network and Adventure Time, the Adventures of Gumball and The Regular Show. I silently pine for the times we would curl up to watch The Simpsons. I snipe at the cartoons whilst secretly enjoying their absurdist dreamlike core.
I was influenced by Scooby Doo, a scared Great Dane who ate processed garbage fed to him by his stoned owner. They held long conversations and the stoner dressed poor Scooby in a range of inappropriate outfits and put him in danger. I believe my love of Scooby and his deformed nephew Scrappy negates any option I may have to pass comment on Didsbury Son’s mesmeric viewing. He has inherited the male gene to stare endlessly, without judgement at anything animated or non-educational. Take a bow men, Lord Reith, I blame you for not inventing Ren & Stimpy earlier.
This staring gene is universal. The twins love a bit of CBeeBies. They may only be 5 months old but Smiley girl chuckles along to the odd programme whilst preferring staring at the light out of the window and The Mighty-Headed boy (60% head, 100% Didsbury) can zone out for a good half hour ( the baby equivalent of a whole day spent in bed watching Big Bang Theory or Lovejoy).
I am concerned. CBeeBies projects a world which worries me on many fronts. Take Mike The Knight, he is an idiot. On the one hand he always realises he has been a fool and that the dragons/trolls/his sister/anything else was right. On the other, his portrayal of feudal patronage, animal cruelty and a male-dominated society where women merely cook and clean is one that gives my baby boy false expectations; and the voice is so annoying I pray the dragons will get fed up and eat him.
Postman Pat has to be 80. I know the post office has made cuts but surely someone should relieve him. It’s the saddest documentary I have ever seen. His only companion is a stuffed cat he thinks is real and the sap in the local train station keeps giving him work, he keeps getting it wrong. Richard Branson, Adam Crozier – sort out your staff.
Where is Tilly’s parent/guardian? She hangs out with an elephant, a pig, a chicken and a crocodile. Where do Child Services think they are up to? If the elephant doesn’t crush her then pain awaits. This is not Life of Pi. and she is only six years old. The pig and chicken are gonners. RIP Porky and Licken but please, someone – save her. Pingu. You make Iggle Piggle seem like Stephen Fry.
These are the tip of a very tall iceberg. The Octonauts flout the Laws of Physics and Bernard Cribbins thinks he is called Jack and talks to a glove. At times it is heartbreaking.
There is a saving grace. A very beautiful saving grace, Timmy. Timmy is a little lamb with a lot inside and I, smiley baby girl and deep thinking baby boy love him. Even Didsbury Son loves Timmy and Didsbury Wife and I have given up Moussaka. Timmy is the son of Shaun the Sheep. I’m not sure who his mother is but I don’t think it’s the one who tried to kill Shaun for having the wrong trousers. Timmy is a ram amongst lambs, an organic fillet amid horsemeat fillings, a Babe the pig sheep in the farmyard. Timmy and his little friends have innocent fun and wipe away the sour taste that the rudderless Tilly and the tiresome Mike the Knight leave in the mouths of my innocent babies.
Thomas, stay in your train garage – you are not welcome here. This house dances to the rhythm of Rastamouse, 3rd and Bird (particularly the Ziggy Marley episode) and the glorious Timmy Time.