TV Guide

The Next Family

By: Amy Forstadt


I’ve noticed there’s been a lot of TV talk around here lately, so I thought I’d weigh in with a handy-dandy guide to popular kids’ tv shows. And when I say “popular,” I mean “ones we watch at our house.”  Enjoy!

Arthur Arthur is the most emotionally evolved aardvark there ever was. I find his company extremely soothing. He’s deliberate, thoughtful, and more mature than most people I know. Arthur may not be the life of the party (leave that to D.W.) but he’s the one who’ll make sure you get home okay and hold your hair while you puke.

Blues Clues Like my seventh grade boyfriend, Blues Clues started out really irritating but eventually won me over through sheer persistence. Sure, no grown man should have Steve’s haircut, Blue makes weird guttural sounds like a choking dolphin, and the salt and pepper shakers have some sort of illicit relationship. But still, it’s kinda cute.

Bob the Builder The anthropomorphic construction vehicles kind of give me the creeps, but aside from that Bob the Builder is just fine with me. I enjoy watching him ride the tension/anger/guilt rollercoaster when his father comes to visit. And as for his obvious attempts to woo Wendy, well, let’s just say her cement mixer might spin the other way, if you know what I mean.

Calliou Oh how I hate that little mofo. This goddamn show is so fucking wholesome it makes me want to yell obscenities at the tv as loud as I possibly can. Also, have you ever seen the one where they go to the beach? No-one in the family has nipples! Goddamn wholesome no-nippled Canadians. I won’t expose my son to that kind of element.

Curious George I am mesmerized by Curious George. But it’s not because of the antics of everyone’s favorite monkey. No, it’s the apartment. That fabulous, fabulous apartment. What does the Man in the Yellow Hat do that he can afford such an incredible place? Those arched windows! The doorman! The rooms and rooms and rooms! It’s probably a rent-controlled, pre-war building on the Upper East Side. Some monkeys get all the luck.

Dora the Explorer This one I don’t get at all. Crappy animation. Some sort of video game theme with no context whatsoever. A random band of little creatures that shows up and plays music for no reason.  But someone, somewhere must have read that this is the toddler power trifecta, because my kid is hooked.

Elmo How do I love Elmo? Let me count the ways. First of all, the shows are entertaining and adorable. Second, all the characters have New York accents. Do you know how funny it is to hear a muppet refer to itself as a “mon-stah?” And third, most of Elmo’s cohorts seem Jewish, gay, or both.  It’s awesome. There’s even an episode with a big, fruity tiger who just can’t contain himself during the final song and yells out “And remember! Stripes go with everything!”  I dare you not to love it.

The Wiggles Bunch o’ freaks. You’re on your own for this one. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Happy watching everybody! Or happy reading books or playing educational games or mandarin-flashcarding or whatever it is you non-tv families do.  If you need me, I’ll be singing along with Elmo.

Amy also have a podcast The Because Show



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