Children’s cartoons have been pushing the fuzzy, sticker-covered, envelope for years, apparently. Don’t believe us? Ask your kids!
For the last 14 years, the alien eyeball donor known as Dora the Explorer’s been at the top of the children’s entertainment-franchise game. She now occupies territory traditionally reserved for white characters, and has sold over $12 billion of swag in the process. Can you say ‘Mucho dinero’?!
But when one ethnic character moves in, more are sure to follow. Now Dora is facing competition from new-brown-kid-on-the-block, Doc McStuffins. Doc’s Toy Story-meets-hospital-drama plotline is finding an audience among discerning 6-year-olds who are tired of Dora constantly breaking the 4th wall and staring blankly.
Actually, it’s no coincidence that non-white characters are growing in popularity, since more than half of all American kids under 5 are now black, Latino, Asian, or all of the above.
Since it seems like the big money these days is in racially specific cartoon characters, lets pitch a few and see which the focus groups like the most!
How about, “Put down your dreidels and throw your hands up for Jewish basketball sensation, Hoops Goldstein!”
No? Then stretch your plausibility index and welcome “Native American President of the United States Girl”!
Still nothing? Well don’t worry because last is our favorite. Put your white privilege to the side and shake hands with “Asian Main Character Boy”! And don’t forget his sidekick, “Scruffy the inedible dog”!
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