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Ranking Kids Shows: Bob the Builder

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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Ranking Kids Shows: Bob the Builder

Since I've got a kid now, I've been watching a lot of kid shows.  Holden's head is slightly flat in the back, nothing to be alarmed about, but the physical therapist said to get him turning left more, and he can only take so much tummy-time.  So we've been watching a lot of TV.  I figured I'd rank some of the kid shows I've seen so far.

Bob the Builder

"Can we build it?"
"Yes, we can!"

Can they build it?  Probably not. 

Bob the Builder is about a guy named Bob, who along with his team of talking trucks, builds stuff.  It's got that retro Davy and Goliath thing going on--Playdough trees and cottony water--which also includes the same sanctimonious platitudes about teamwork and positive thinking, which is pretty annoying.  But what do you expect from a kids' show?  No one is going to say to Bob, "Here's a steaming pile of shit.  Now fix it with your team of underpaid, illegal immigrants and this broken hammer."  Disingenuous, but necessary.  And Bob the Builder has a lot of things working for it.

Bob is voiced by Greg Proops, a pretty funny comedian from Whose Line Is It Anyway?  Proops looks like John C. McGinley from Scrubs in dork drag, with Buddy Holly glasses and a 70's leisure suit, but Bob himself is pretty generic looking, though Proops is funny enough that even when delivering Bob's straight lines it's kinda like watching Bill Murray in Razor's Edge: he's not saying anything funny but you want to laugh anyway.  And the the theme song kicks ass, like it could've been penned by Paul Westerberg, a Replacements outtake, circa Pleased to Meet Me.  

What bugs me about Bob the Builder is his team.  This isn't a program exactly driven by plot, which as far as I can tell usually centers around various pieces of talking construction equipment going to collect rocks or wood and getting lost (most of Bob's jobs tend to be in remote wilderness locations for some reason).  His team is composed of mostly worthless fucktards.  When they are not getting lost in the woods, they tend to whine a lot about being scared.  "Ooh, that tree is so scary!"  Or "Ooh, this cave is so scary."  Then the big truck shakes, till Bob or his wife, Wendy, calms 'em down.  (More on Wendy later.)  The various pieces of machinery talk like little kids, and I'm not sure exactly why, and there is also this creepy-looking scarecrow thing with a potato sack for a head named Spud, and I don't know what the fuck he is even doing as part of a construction team.  But what really pisses me off is Wendy, Bob's wife, who gives me a terrific pain in the ass anytime she is onscreen. 

I don't know what it is about Wendy that makes me hate her so much.  The short, curly hair?  The earrings?  But I can't stand her.  I hate her stupid voice.

I give Bob the Builder 7 out of 10 stars.


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