Children’s TV worries me. It’s always being debated in the media as to how little TV is acceptable for children to watch before they turn into zombies - it's hard to know what to do for the best, We have always had a policy of ‘less is more’ when it comes to ‘the telly’ in our house.
It started out with a bit of harmless Teletubbies fun on CBeebies. From there we developed a love/hate relationship with ‘In The Night Garden’ and have really loved some of the more innocent little programmes like ’64 Zoo Lane’, ‘3rd and Bird’ and ‘Bob The Builder’ (ofcourse). I liked the CBeebies channel because the programmes were very age-appropriate for my then tiny tots, but I liked it most because there were no adverts. None. Breaks between programmes were filled with simple craft ideas, seasonal songs or the presenters rapping about different numbers (my personal favourite).
But, as the children have grown up, we’ve explored other programmes on other channels and their favourites are now Scoody Doo, Garfield, Tom and Jerry and Pink Panther. Generally, I have no problem with the programmes themselves (although why they couldn’t just leave Scooby Doo as 1970’s kitsch, I’ll never know), but I have a massive issue with the ads between programmes.
They are ENDLESS. They are LOUD. They are ANNOYING! Everything moves too quickly, the children speak in annoying voices, the ‘voice-over-man’ shouts the ‘voice-over-girl’ squeaks like a mouse and it just all really bothers me. I know toy manufacturers have to get their products in front of us somehow but really, does it all have to be so shouty and twinkly and exploding and shiny? It’s exhausting, and the children simply sit there, absorbing it all like a sponge and repeating the ad men's catch phrases mindlessly for the rest of the week.
I have now taken to flicking channels while the ad breaks are on which means running into the sitting room every 13 or so minutes (I’ve timed it).
What do you think? Do the ads bother you or don’t you mind?