Friday, July 30, 2010
I watch a lot of children's television. And I mean a lot. Yes, my kids are well rounded, and no, they aren't being raised by Sony, but as a responsible parent, I still have to watch 90% of what they watch when they do watch. This means imbibing hours of Sprout, Nick Jr., The Disney Channel, and countless movies.
What strikes me as different about today's shows is that they're so overly, well, soft. There's too much sangin' and not enough fighting. Everything is so politically correct, and so educationally focused that the net effect is unoffensive, sanitized boredom. Still, every now and they, you catch a glimmer of real n*gga sh*t that somehow slips past the focus groups that inevitably monitor these shows. While most cartoon charaters are supposed to exist in a colorblind parallel universe, it's clear that many of these characters are given stereotypical "black" behavior, whether good or bad. And to that effect, I present a shabbily assembled collection of The Realest N*ggaz On Children's Television™, past and present.
Uniqua from The Backyardigans
All the singing on this show generally irks me, but you gotta give props to Nickelodeon for casting a real hood girl for the role of the obviously black character Uniqua. While most black cartoon characters speak with a nasally twang that screams "suburbs", with her sassy blend of split verbs and underhanded insults, Uniqua just screams "Southside". And seriously: Uniqua. She gets props just on the name alone. Tyrone? Not so much.
Hip Hop Harry from Hip Hop Harry
This show used to be hot, but for whatever reason, production ceased years ago and they just keep showing the same old stale episodes. Still, an 8 foot tall rappin' bear draped in saggin' Sean Johns, and rockin' ice is some trill sh*t. This show used to be really popular in my kids' rotation, and we even rented a bootleg Hip Hop Harry suit off the internet which I "performed" in for my son's 1st birthday party. When I say "hip hop", you say "Harry".
Gordon from Sesame Street
A brotha rockin' a baldie on the 70's on PBS is some real sh*t. Nuff' said.
Swiper from Dora The Explorer
After all this damn time, how come Dora and Boots haven't figured out that Swiper is gonna roll up about 15 minutes into the show and steal their sh*t? I just don't get it.
Oscar The Grouch from Sesame Street
Admit it. Oscar is pretty much the neighborhood wino, in muppet form. He talks greasy, smells greasy, and basically just exists solely to hate on random sh*t. He's like Kill Moves off Everybody Hates Chris, but greener and furrier.
Fushia from Little Bill
If there was ever a kiddie show character with WNBA written all over her, it would be Little Bill's mean-assed, ball playin' older sister April. But Bill's cousin Fushia matches Uniqua for pure hoodrat gulliness.
Question: Can you name some more of The Realest N*ggaz On Children's Television™? Who did I miss?