Safe and positive – my goals for Fluffy Gardens.
Children are sensitive beings and often can’t express just how sensitive they are. It’s hard sometimes as a parent (and programme-maker) to know what effect a show, even one like Fluffy Gardens, will have on their children.
For example, I bought a Bert & Ernie’s Great Adventures DVD for my daughter, Daisy. I love Bert & Ernie and all things Sesame Street and really loved how they translated to stop-motion. But the intro alone was enough to freak my daughter out – the idea that, when she’s in bed, her bed could grow legs and take her out of the house?
Even as I write that, it makes perfect sense to me how that could scare the bejaysus out of a child. It could just as easily been a scene in one of the Nightmare On Elm Street movies. One of the later ones, when they went rubbish. Though not New Nightmare – that one was pretty good. And Freddy Vs. Jason rocked hard.
But back to children, it’s just so hard to know sometimes. There’s a show out there that I love, that really gets across the value of teamwork. But it does so as the characters rescue baby animals who have been separated from their parents. I have to wonder about the effect the show has on separation anxiety and what fears it plays into.
See how hard it is?
That’s why it’s so important to try to look at shows from many different angles, both as a parent and a programme-maker. And why Fluffy Gardens was so tricky at times (and I certainly didn’t always get it right).
Safe and positive.
Life isn’t always like that of course. But I wish it were.