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Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

OPINION: Everyone should watch ‘Bluey,’ not just kids

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Makenzie Miller
(Illustration)

Many kids shows teach children about the importance of counting, reading, and overall don’t really concern an adult audience at all. 

But what if there was a show that not only talked about valuable life lessons, but showed the ups and downs of modern parenting and catered to parents and childless adults altogether? That’s where “Bluey” comes in. 

“Bluey” is an Australian cartoon following a Blue Heeler named Bluey, and the rest of the Heeler family including her parents, Bandit and Chilli, and her younger sister, Bingo. 

The show follows the Heeler family and their life in Brisbane, Australia, where the studio that produces “Bluey,” Ludo Studios, is based.  

The cartoon, which was originally meant to be a show about parenting, has resonated with many adults and kids alike because of the issues that are touched on in the show. 

Now, don’t think that just because these issues resonate more with adults, they aren’t for kids either. These heavier episodes teach important things besides life lessons, one of them being coping skills.

In “The Show” (S2 E19), the girls put on a play for their parents for Mother’s Day, showing how Bandit and Chilli met and the many life milestones they’ve gone through together. When it came to Chili’s first pregnancy, Bingo used a blue balloon to represent Chilli being pregnant with Bluey. 

Unexpectedly, the balloon pops out of nowhere, and Bingo immediately thinks that she ruined Mother’s Day because of it. 

This is an important scene because parents are usually quick to jump up and comfort their kids when they are crying, but in this scene, that’s not the case. The balloon popping triggered something in Bandit and Chilli and gave them flashbacks to an initially unnamed traumatic event. 

After a moment of Bluey trying to comfort Bingo and convince her to keep going with the play, Chilli comes over to talk to Bingo and tells her this: “These things happen honey. Let me tell you what I do … I have a little cry, I pick myself up, dust myself off and keep going; the show must go on.” 

This is a great message to send to anyone, especially kids.

Adults who have watched “Bluey” have said that “The Show” is exactly what they needed after they had a traumatic event such as a miscarriage. Once the theory that Chilli had a miscarriage was confirmed by creator Joe Brumm, many adults, mainly parents, said that this confirmation makes “The Show” and “Onesies” even more powerful than before

Many moms feel like it matters that Chilli Heeler, known as “mum” in the show, had a miscarriage. One mom stated on the Wellington Mom that the event is common but not talked about enough. 

I feel that it’s important to touch on issues such as infertility and miscarriages, especially here in the U.S. because we live in a post-Roe country, where treatments for miscarriages are limited, and you could be jailed for losing a pregnancy. 

While the show is aimed at 5-7-year-olds, the main audience demographic consists of adults who actually know and understand what’s going on. “The Show” does have an overall lesson that everyone can learn from, that being “the show must go on,” meaning, no matter how tough life gets, you keep going. I think that’s a message everyone can (and should) get behind. 

“Onesies” (S3 E31) also has an overall message to it as well, but it’s sadder than the lesson being taught in “The Show.” The message being relayed in “Onesies” is that some things aren’t always meant to be. 

These two episodes go hand-in-hand because they discuss reproductive rights and also deal with Chilli Heeler and her sister, Brandy Cattle, who can’t have kids at all. 

In “Onesies,” Chilli’s older sister, Brandy, comes to visit the Heeler family after four years. She distances herself due to grief of Chilli being able to have kids while Brandy herself can’t. 

Toward the end of the episode, the viewer sees Brandy holding her arms out, longing for a child after Bingo runs away. Fans speculate that the sisters’ fertility issues are genetic, and I wouldn’t be surprised. 

The show teaches lessons that can be used throughout life and touches on some heavy topics, including death. For example, in “Copycat” (S1 E38), Bluey and Bandit copy each other as a bit and then find an injured bird. They take the bird to the vet to try and save it. Unfortunately, the bird dies at the vet’s office, and Bluey learns that death is inevitable.

The show also hits other issues like,

  •  Premature birth in “Early Baby” (S1 E40), where the kids are playing a game of hospital and Bluey’s friend, Indy, pretends to give birth to a premature baby, just like her sister in real life.
  • Voting in “Circus” (S2 E40), where the kids go with their parents to the polls and learn about the importance of voting for the best boss by playing a game of circus. 
  • Neurodiversity and military families in “Army” (S2 E13)
  • Deafness in “Turtle Boy” (S3 E30), where Bingo and Bandit go to the playground and find a toy turtle. As they are leaving, Bingo is forced to leave the toy at the playground because it belongs to someone. The next day, an unnamed character, who is deaf, comes to play with the same toy, as the boy and mom are leaving, his mom signs for him to leave the toy. 

The show also touches on lighter topics and lessons, such as how not everyone will view you (or your child) as “the most special person (or kid) in the world” in “Library” (S2 E30). 

If you’re looking for a show that’s great for the whole family but caters specifically to adults and adult issues, I recommend giving “Bluey” a try. All three seasons are streaming on Disney+.

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About the Contributors
Jacinda Hall, Podcast Editor
Jacinda Hall is the podcast editor for The Sunflower. Hall is a junior majoring in communications with an emphasis in journalism and minoring in English literature. Her favorite quote is by Kurt Cobain: “I’d rather be hated for who I am, than loved for who I am not.” In her free time, Hall likes to go to the gym, crochet and make fancy beverages. Hall's pronouns are she/her.
Makenzie Miller, Illustrator/Designer
Makenzie Miller is an animation major and a first-year illustrator on The Sunflower. She is from Eureka, Kansas, and enjoys not only art but also cartoons, video games, softball, and literally any type of animal. She hopes to one day be a storyboarder/concept artist for an animation company.

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    Nancy AmelunkeMar 5, 2024 at 7:48 am

    I absolutely love this article. My husband and I watch Bluey with our granddaughter. She love it and we learn a lot also. Thanks for sharing.

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