Friday, September 16, 2011

WHERE HAS BARBAPAPA GONE?


I remember Barbapapa from my childhood. I remember both books and TV shows quite well but it isn't something you come across much these days... I enjoyed them as a kid. I loved the concept of their ability to change shape. It was simple and appealing.

A few years back a friend who lives in Germany sent one of my kids a Barbapapa T-shirt. I thought it was a bit odd that she'd managed to find something so obscure. Then I moved in with Thomas and he bought Léon a ton of Barbapapa books in Danish. Three years ago I noticed in a French supermarket that you could get Barbapapa DVDs. And finally this summer you couldn't move in Italy for cuddly Barbapapas, plastic Barbapapas, posters, school bags, key rings, DVDs, books and everything else. Barbapapa was as omnipresent there as Ben 10 or the likes here.

So why has Barbapapa taken over Europe but not the UK? Did it die out there and then make a come back, missing us out or has it never left the continent?

It is a shame it hasn't come back here because kids do still love it. My three smallest ones request a Barbapapa book daily in Danish. It is a shame English-speaking kids are missing out on it. It certainly strikes me as much more innocent enjoyment than the Ben 10 type action cartoons we are force-fed from the States.

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