I am about to drop a doozy on you. Wait for it. My kids do not watch the Disney Channel. I’m not referring to Disney Jr, or our homegirls Sophia and Dr. McStuffins, but Disney. And let’s not confuse that with family TV shows. Those are kid shows, with real people where the children, full of larger than life dramatics, are apparently in charge. And every adult character is portrayed as some confused version of an idiot.
And it’s not just Disney. Nickelodeon (not to be confused with Nick Jr.) isn’t much better. Call me square, conservative, a wet blanket, or even out of touch, but what the heck has happened to good ‘ol family television?! Where are the Tim the Toolman Taylors or Clair Huxtibles of this generation? The shows that are guaranteed to garner a chuckle from all, all the while ensuring a moral lesson at the end? Are we to be relegated to cartoons for all of the eternity? Or shall we jump at the bit to watch a modern family show about teen suicide (Thank God, my oldest is only 6!)?
For the sake of transparency, we do not have cable. So maybe I am missing something. But as we peruse the options on Hulu or Netflix, we come up empty-handed. Until recently we have settled, albeit happily, for American Ninja Warrior and America’s Funniest Home Videos; both of which we enjoy as a family. However, there are only so many episodes of people vs. slides that one can endure.
It’s not just us adults that suffer. Our kids are missing out on valuable memory-making opportunities. I grew up with a working mom, and my happy childhood memories are anchored in low key rituals. Every Friday morning we would eat danishes at McDonald’s for breakfast ( it was the 80’s!). Then later that evening we would settle into the couch with our microwave popcorn for ABC’s Friday Night Family Line Up or Nick at Night. I looked forward to it. I savored it. And I remember those nights with great fondness, to this day.
We live in such a fast-paced world, and the internet sells the idea that our children need Pinterest worthy childhoods to have happy ones – A notion that it is damaging for adults as much as it is for our kids. It’s heavenly to melt into the couch and watch something everyone can enjoy – and just be with each other. I know because we are doing this!
We have started watching Full House, the original, because let’s be real the original is always better. After that, we’ll move on to Home Improvement, or Family Matters. We may even go as far back a The Wonder Years if they appease me. If not, there are plenty others from which to choose. My SOS is this, to the ABC’s, NBC’s, and the like, give us back this generations’ family TV shows, and maybe you wouldn’t see so many folks cutting the cord and never looking back.