Don’t Judge a Show By Its Genre

Jennifer - USA
Entered on September 22, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
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I am fifteen years old, and I still enjoy watching Veggietales. Some of you might be thinking that I’m too old to watch a kids’ show like Veggietales. Well, I’ve got news for you: I also like The Muppets and I still sometimes watch Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood and Reading Rainbow, though the last two can be a little juvenile for my taste.

I believe that people shouldn’t write a show off as dumb just because it was made for kids. True, there are a lot of stupid kids’ shows out there, but that’s mostly because the creators slack off and use clichéd stories that teach lessons about tolerance, sharing, or making friends. While there’s nothing wrong with teaching those lessons, there is something wrong with sacrificing good plots, acting, dialogue, and everything else that makes a good show just because the target audience can’t recognize the quality.

What makes Veggietales such a good show is that its writers don’t just write what they think the kids would enjoy, they write what they themselves would enjoy, knowing that the children would also enjoy it. Even though some kids wouldn’t understand the references in Veggietales, they’d still find it entertaining, and their parents would understand and explain the references. For example, the episode Are You My Neighbor?, parodies Star Trek, and while many kids wouldn’t get the references, they’d still enjoy the show while their parents would appreciate the parody. So a good kids’ show is created with the entire family in mind, but since so many kids’ shows are written with only the children in mind, people have come to expect all children’s shows to be something only a child can enjoy.

Some people think they’ve outgrown Veggietales, but often, when a child outgrows a show, it’s not because they’ve stopped liking it, but they’ve realized that older kids don’t like it. There comes a time when children want to move themselves as far from the term “kid” as possible and more towards “grown-up”. For example, I have two older brothers; one is five years older than me; the other is eight years older. When I was little, I looked up to them and wanted to be just like them. I remember when one of my brothers told me that Barney was stupid; I immediately adopted that opinion as my own and never watched the show again. It wasn’t that I’d stopped liking Barney, I just wanted to appear more mature. Fortunately, my brothers are open-minded and never thought Veggietales was stupid.

When someone tells me they don’t like Veggietales, I always ask them why they don’t like it, and they usually answer with, “it’s dumb,” or, “talking vegetables look freaky.” At which point I ask if they’ve ever seen a full episode, to which they almost always answer with a no, and it bugs me that people judge such a wonderful show before watching it; they’re missing out on a great experience because of their close-mindedness.