Dora – Explorer or Bad Influence?

I’ve never been a fan of Dora the Explorer.  I’ve never really thought about it all that much, but mainly two things bothered me.  The first was that Dora was always trying to teach Spanish to the kids.  Why would that bother me?  That’s a whole different article.

The second was that Dora seemed to talk down to the kids so much.  Repeating everything three times, long pauses in the show…  I would think most kids would get bored quickly and wander off.

Otherwise I haven’t given Dora much thought.  I encourage the kids to watch something else if something better is on, and that’s about it.

Today, however, I was laying around this afternoon recovering from a hard morning of non-stop fishing, and happened to actually watch an episode of Dora.  It was worse than I had expected.

The first thing that caught me were her eyes.  Granted, she’s just a cartoon, but something about her eyes just bored into me.  Her voice was bright and happy, but her eyes were dead and souless.  I’m not so sure what was going on with the Boots character.  I had to get one of my kids to tell me it was a monkey, since I wasn’t too sure.

Anyway, this episode seemed to be based around a plot by Dora and Boots to sneak into Berry Hill and steal a bunch of fruit from Swiper, the thief who lives there.  Maybe Swiper didn’t actually own the berries, but it was made to seem that way.  Lots of whispering and sneaking around were involved, so that they didn’t alert Swiper to the plan.  At first I thought it might be a “steal from the rich, give to the poor” kind of thing – you know, some kind of subliminal nod to redistribution of wealth.  But no, Dora and Boots weren’t stealing fruit to give to the poor or hungry – they just liked fruit and wanted to get some for themselves.  Common thieves, apparently.

Of couse, they DID wake up Swiper, but managed to cast their spell on him in time.  They were dancing around happy to have gotten away with stealing the berries when some big bear showed up and started chasing them.  At that point my mind decided I had had enough and made me stop watching.

Pick a better show for the kids to watch, folks.  Or better yet, turn off the TV and give them some fun books to read.

10 thoughts on “Dora – Explorer or Bad Influence?”

  1. From what little I’ve seen of Ni-hao-kai-lan, it seems to center around one of the talking animals getting upset. Everyone notices they are upset, but it takes them a long time to figure out why, at which point they do use breathing exercises and other things to calm them down and make them happy again. Also, the show has a grandfather only – no other parents in sight.

    Diego is another one, same general idea, same lack of substance.

  2. If anyone has seen any of these shows, and has half a brain, they’d be thinking the same thing as I’m thinking; being a father of girls; these shows are prepping our newest generations for the new world. The new world where english is secondary and the American culture is secondary to the influence of mexican and chinese cultures. These shows teach kids(through the tolerance and injection of culturally dominating language, whatever the show may focus on: Chinese, Spanish, etc)to absorb that particular culture, while ignoring the culture that parents are working hard to instill themselves. These shows work to undo that which parents have a hard enough time doing in the first place in this day and age, and have been doing so since 1999. It’s one thing to have another language taught in a children’s tv show, Sesame Street and Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood have been doing it since the 60’s, but what’s important to remember about shows like this(that I grew up to)is that there was a preservation of the American culture that you don’t see anymore in these new “diversity tolerance” children’s programs, and it’s something entirely different when a particular culture is just thrown out the window and another is imposed on our conformable children, like learning to do whatever it takes to be happy in chinese. Why can’t we just do whatever it takes to be happy in American english? Let the chinese worry about being chinese, and let the spanish worry about being spanish. Don’t force it down the throats of our children!

    Maybe I need to write an article myself……

    Mark Henderson

  3. There’s another thing that is a bad influence to children: she goes everywhere by herself without an adult. Of course, she’s got her pal, Boots the weird talking monkey, who’s probably about 2 years old. I remember one episode (don’t ask why) when she went on another weird adventure not only with Boots, but with her two BABY cousins. Seriously, I think she’s supposed to be 5 or something.

  4. You perceptions are unfounded and lack empirical evidence. Further it shows the mentality which is driving this country apart. You probably criticize the president too because he is black.

    1. Are you sure you meant to comment on an article about Dora? Otherwise your comment just seems to be a sad attempt at race-baiting to pick a fight. I’d have trashed your comment if it weren’t such a good example of the stupidity of those who try to tie race to everything.

  5. She wanders off alone with her pal Boots who is a monkey and can’t save her. Plus, in reality Swiper would just steal everything and violently kill Dora and Boots. Also, she needs a huger shirt.

  6. Belive it or not, this show effects kids brains…

    I heard that a kid used to watch Dora all the time. Then when the kid stopped, they would always want to go outside to go exploring. When he/she would go for walks holing their mom or dads hand, they would say, “first, we need to go here and then here and then here then, we’l be home!”They didn’t have friends and was bullied all the time. The kid didn’t realize until the first day of 5th grade that he/she is much older now and needs to start acting like the other kids. Now, he/she probally has tins of friends.

    And additionally, Dora is as good as a peice of chewed gum.

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