Please let me say these programs are not typical of British children’s television, so don’t walk away thinking that there is this mad conspiracy to warp kids’ brains. What I am presenting to you is the odd lot, not the classics. However, I have to be frank (as opposed to Karen); this is the nation that created Teletubbies. So, I will certainly go into Jackanory, Bagpuss, The Clangers, and other excellent shows in another post. In the meantime, we can have a good laugh.
The Chuckle Brothers – Imagine being continuously bombarded by Dad jokes and slapstick by a couple of dotty uncles your mom is forced to invite to every family cookout. Welcome to the Chuckle Brothers.
Rainbow – Zippy, a brown sex toy with a zipper for a mouth; George, a not-seen-in-nature pink hippopotamus; and Bungle, a bear who dearly needs medication flanked by whatever poor human needs the work in television remained on ITV for 20 years. It has retained a cult status, and you have to have some knowledge of the show to get some cultural reference jokes. This is one program that does not translate well over here because Zippy is completely unlikable.
The Sooty Show – Another show that gained cult status, you either love or hate Sooty, Sweep (the dog), and Soo (the panda). Personally, if you can get through the video without ripping your ears off from Sweep’s squeak, you are a better person than I am.
Jigsaw – The problem with this show is a character named Noseybonk, an appropriate name considering the phallic nature of the schnoz. Nightmare inducing and confusing, I really do not understand the point of this creature.
Fingermouse – The BBC must have had a lean budget that year. This show was a plea to up the license fee.
Mr. Benn – The premise of this cartoon was a middle-class gentleman in a bowler hat would just randomly enter a costume shop to put on an outfit of the day, pop through a magic door, and go on an adventure centered around said costume. Looking back, The Boffin figures the BBC scrapped the episode featuring the line, “Here kiddies, come into the changing room, and watch me turn into a Radio One DJ.”
Bod – A silent, bald kid just walks around doing random things that make no sense. Watch as Bod throws an apple up into the air and waits for it to come down. Even his Aunt Flo arrives. Seriously.
And parents criticize Dora and Diego’s lack of supervision.