Saturday, April 06, 2013

There's no getting Away from Blue

Blues Clues: No Escape
My wife and I now have a two year old in the house, which is both fun and challenging. The big reason this age is referred to as the "terrible twos" comes from the child's tendency to test you...on everything. Here are some phrases you'll hear in the house throughout the day:
"Don't draw on the walls."
"I mean it don't draw on the walls."
"Do you want a time out?"
"No! I said no!"
"Don't play in the blinds."
"Don't balance vases on your head."
"The kitchen torch is not for little girls!"

One of the challenges of having a toddler in the house is keeping her engaged in something. We try not to be the parents who sit our kid down in front of the TV and let her zone out to inane programming full of garish colors and grating music, but every now and then you find yourself dangling from the fraying edges of the end of your rope and there's nothing to do but switch the idiot box over to something she wants to watch.

It is due mainly to that last part that Mildly Sensational and I have watched a lot of Blue's Clues. When I say a lot I mean that if someone mentions the show I immediately get the title song stuck in my head and it plays on an endless loop.

After watching so much of the show it occurred to me that you really should feel sorry for the main character, Steve (seriously, the first actor to star in the show's name was Steve). He appears to be trapped in a house that is seriously haunted, and the restless spirits have taken in on themselves to torment him by taking the forms of cartoon animals and household objects and force him to sing and play children's games.

I wondered what it would look like if Steve ever tried to reach out to the world for help. That led me to doing a rare full-color cartoon that turns some of the most beloved characters in the history of children's programming into evil, sadistic beings bent on tormenting an innocent captive. I can be a bad, bad man.

As grating as it can be after the hundredth time you've had to endure it, the show is very well done. It also seems to be good for our daughter, or so I tell myself to salve my conscience when I occasionally do break down and let her zone out in front of the azure puppy and the man in the verdant shirt.

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