I’m generally a fan of children’s programing. I think most of it is pretty good and let me tell you it’s saved my sanity and the lives of my children on more than one occasion. But I hate Caillou.
For those who have had the misfortune to watch this particular show, you know that the kid’s annoying and whiny. But that’s not even (all of) why I hate the show.
I had a vague dislike of Caillou for a long time, mostly due to the aforementioned whininess, but I didn’t really hate the show until I realized that the people who write, direct and produce this show don’t have children. They don’t have nieces or nephews. These people have never even met children.
Let me tell you about the episode that really did it for me.
Caillou, a “four year old” (you know I’d be doing air-quotes here if I could) wakes up in the morning and goes down stairs to find his mother and his father making breakfast in the kitchen. Because adults don’t have to work, no, we just get to hang out with our kids and cook for them all day. His father is cooking because we’re nothing if not politically correct on the pre-school programing he’s made pancakes. But Caillou doesn’t want pancakes, he wants cereal. And that’s fine because what parent minds wasting the breakfast he’s already made so his kid can eat pre-packaged crap? And because he’s having cereal his little sister wants cereal ok, so apparently one of these writers has been in the same room with a kid before and mom and dad are fine with that. Caillou, being the “big boy” that he is, wants to pour the milk for his little sister’s cereal. She doesn’t scream and throw a fit when he tries to do so insisting that mom do it so they’ve been in the room with a child, but not for very long. Of course, because Caillou’s only four he spills the milk my four -year-olds have been getting themselves their own breakfasts for two years, they have pouring milk down cold again, the sister doesn’t cry. But she does still want cereal. And now they’re out of milk. “No problem” mom says smiling, we’ll just go to the store and get some more” because well, we’ve already established that adults don’t have to work so they have all day to go to the store to get milk even when there are still perfectly good pancakes sitting on the kitchen table!! But little sister’s still hungry. Don’t worry, dad can hold her off with a banana. She really wants cereal but she’ll be fine with that. Seriously?! So mom and Caillou walk to the store who doesn’t like a little morning stroll? And who doesn’t have a store close enough to walk to? Probably it’s a little mom and pop market with organic produce and other all natural local products. And on the way home from the store Caillou gets distracted by the crack in the sidewalk, and the little bird and the who knows what all and the mother who’s carrying the milk just keeps smiling and encouraging his inquisitiveness and isn’t life lovely, there’s no “hey sweetie hurry up,” there’s no “hey kid this milk is getting heavy”, there’s no “dude hurry up, at this rate it’s going to be lunch time before we get home and your dad needs to get to work sometime TODAY SO GET A FREAKING MOVE ON ALREADY!!!!!”
How am I supposed to compete with that?
So my children are never allowed to see it.