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Why Nick Jr. Television Shows Annoy Me...
Watching Nick Jr. Daily
I've always loved cartoons. As a kid, I would often sneak and stay up well past my bedtime watching cartoons (Thanks Ted Turner & Cartoon Network!). Even as a 30-something adult, I still enjoy watching my favorite super heroes in action (Justice League, Batman: The Animated Series, etc) as well as silly cartoons like SpongeBob, Gravity Falls and Adventure Time. However, since my toddler has taken a shine to television, I have been watching a good bit of Nick Jr. each day with him. We usually watch about 20 minutes of it each morning while getting dressed and 1-2 hours after dinner each night. Over the last few months I've grown to like shows like Yo Gabba Gabba! and UmiZoomi. However, there are some shows that absolutely make me cringe. Each episode these irksome characters do the same things and the people around them just take the punishment over and over, never exacting any consequences. If these were my friends or neighbors we wouldn't be on speaking terms anymore. Here are the reasons why I have a love/hate relationship with the Nick Jr. channel:
Dora the Explorer
Dora the Explorer
Dora has been around for quite a while now....my teen niece dressed as her when she was just a baby herself for Halloween once or twice. I love that Dora teaches kids to appreciate diversity, different languages, how to count, etc. However, I question why the animators would draw Dora's head 4 times the normal size. Whenever she stands next to her cousin, Diego, you see just how big it really is. Plus, she's wearing yellow socks, red shorts and a pink shirt. If that's not bad enough her shirt is too little and NEVER fully covers her belly. But I digress...my real irk is with Swiper. Swiper is a masked fox that shows up every episode to steal anything not nailed down. He even wears gloves so that he leaves no fingerprints. Why hasn't he be arrested or rehabilitated yet!
Ni Hao, Kai-Lan
This is a show about a girl of Chinese descent. She has friends that are all different animals, including a floating pink elephant that hangs from a balloon for some reason. Outside of the animals, Kai-Lan spends a lot of time with her elderly grandfather. I like this show a lot, but Kai-Lan has one extremely hot-headed friend. Tolee is Kai-Lan's koala friend. No matter what they are doing, he manages to throw a tantrum or stalk off boiling angry. Playing musical chairs and you get out first? It means your friends don't care about you and you should explode. Sitting down to lunch and someone else picks up your favorite panda-shaped paper plate? Get mad...real mad. Tolee needs anger management classes (or a time-out), stat!
Mike the Knight
What can I say about Mike the Knight? This kid is the biggest brat in the history of children's cartoons. Mike is a kid that lives in a castle, the son of a legendary knight and king. He is an aspiring knight that mainly hangs out with his two dragon friends. In one episode Mike is too busy to care for his dogs, Yip and Yap, so he enlists the help of his young troll friend. Trollee, the adorable little troll, is excited to help but explains that he doesn't know how. Mike assures him that he will help and teach him. Shortly after, he runs off with his dragon friends and leaves Trollee hanging. He does this several more times, each time berating Trollee for doing things wrong in his absence. Finally after completely devastating and tearing down Trollee, Mike "does it right" and acts knightly, correcting his misdeeds. This is Mike's passive-aggressive pattern every episode. In another episode, Mike bulllies Trollee so bad that he jumps out a castle window to escape a sleepover where he was unwelcomed by Mike. Now, I've never seen an episode where Mike's dad is actually seen so maybe he is angry that he has an absentee father. Whatever the reason, Mike is a jerk.
My Son Loves It
Anyway, I know that these shows are meant for my son and not me. They all have value and help to teach my son things that we are currently working on (colors, shapes, social skills, etc). Also, he seems to enjoy them. Maybe I don't because I work with a Mike everyday, went to school with Tolee and see Swiper on the news every night. All I can say is God bless the youth and their lack of jaded eyes.