What Sorts of Children’s Television Hosts?


Cerrie Burnell, To frightening for preschoolers?

Cerrie Burnell, Too frightening for preschoolers?

BBC Children’s TV has a show for preschoolers called CBeebies. The show includes a lot of interesting animated, puppetry, and other fictional characters as well as human presenters…  Alex, and Cerrie. Cerrie, however, has become the target of serious public campaign that claims she is frightening children.  

According to the Daily Mail:

 the decision to hire her has prompted a flurry of complaints to the BBC and on parenting message boards, with some of the posts on the CBeebies website becoming so vicious that they had to be removed.

Incredibly, one father said he wanted to ban his daughter from watching the channel because he feared it would give her nightmares.

Another parent, quoted on MSNBC’s Today, wrote along the same lines: 

“I didn’t want to let my children watch the filler bits on the bedtime hour last night because I know it would have played on my eldest daughter’s mind and possibly caused sleep problems.”

Apparently, these parents aren’t worried that Brum, a car with eyes that always has to same someone from “naughty people,”  Chuggington, the talking train, or that Blue ghostly looking creature in “the night garden, will scare their children and give them bad dreams but Cerrie Burnell is something else. Cerrie was born with an incomplete right arm.

Here is a one minute clip of Cerrie and Alex scaring children on CBeebies about their birthdays. Personally, I find Alex a little scary, and at my age, I flinch at any mention of birthdays, but I think I can handle it.

[[This short clip shows Cerrie Burnell and co-host Alex announcing a birthday. Her missing lower right arm does not appear to be a serious problem.]]

Perhaps ironically the CBeebies show website has a lot of info on helping children with “special needs” ( and even uses Makaton on its website). Perhaps a good place to start would be just not bowing to the pressure of creeps who are determined to attack even the smallest natural variation in human form or behavior.

One can’t help wonder if the same people who organized the boycott of Tinky-Wink, the Teletubby accused of homosexual tendencies, are back at it.

for more , see icad on this story.

3 thoughts on “What Sorts of Children’s Television Hosts?

  1. I personally found that yellow balloon that kept floating up from nowhere quite frightening. But honestly, using your children as a screen for the venting of malicious prejudice is despicable.

  2. Check out the video of Cerrie over at ICAD, linked to in Dick’s post. She’s pretty amazing, and if the BBC goes on to can her, panning to bigotry, that will be to their eternal shamefulness.

    In some ways, the interview with her is what you might hope for: she’s just allowed to speak about her experience of curiosity from children, and discrimination from adults, and her own assessment of “appearing normal” through prosthetic means vs just being herself.

    My only complaint about her is that she’s a little too nice about these things.

  3. As Spirit of our Time says, may be she is being just a little TOO nice… but then she is probably trying to avoid frightening people. It is despicable when people use their children as puppets for their own bigotry… and it is very sad in doing so they teach their children their same prejudices.

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