Saturday, April 05, 2008

The Hooley Dooleys MUST DIE!!!

After everything that Mrs Donkey and I have been through over the last few weeks, it has been very heartening and consoling to receive numerous phone calls and emails from friends and families enquiring about our physical and mental well being. Indeed we’re fine, both physically, and in terms of what we’ve been through, emotionally as well. However, something that does not seem to be understood by our loved ones around the globe, is the effect of something even more emotionally crippling than the rumble of tanks and the cracking of nocturnal gunfire.

Since being exiled in Bangkok, Mrs D and I have found ourselves living in the comfortable and welcoming bosom of my sister, her husband and their young children, the latter of whom are at that age where they have come to enjoy - who am I kidding? – have become tragically and hopelessly addicted to that relatively new phenomenon on Australian television, which features a number of idiots in primary-coloured tops dancing around a couple of would-be actors in fluffy animal suits. These singing and dancing, monochromatic acts have taken Australia (and in some cases, the world) by storm, gradually, stealthily creeping-up on our children like some destructive, mentally retarding brain cancer.

They’re all the same, following a tried and tested formula of bold, but contrasting colours on a more or less non-descript background; bouncing, repetitive movements; a couple of non-threatening, but equally colourful fluffy animal suits; and a collection of simple, catchy, repetitive tunes, all of which are designed to hypnotise or virtually paralyse anybody of a certain level of intelligence, be they young child or parent.

Interestingly enough, many of the boppy songs have a low-base, techno-like drum-beat which, when combined with bright colours and bouncy movements, has the exact same effect on children as it does on ecstasy-guzzling ravers – there’s a lesson in there for all you David Attenborough types.

Anyway, the whole point of these programs is that they can successfully send a rampaging two year old, hell-bent on destruction of every vase and electrical device in the home, into a docile, dribbling vegetable in about two seconds flat. It’s no wonder the programs have been adopted by exhausted parents everywhere as a surrogate baby sitter, however the problems begin when this helpful course of action gets abused, and these DVDs find themselves on high rotation, three or four times a day.

But for the uninitiated, let me offer you a nice, brief, un-biased DonkeyBlog explanation of this destructive phenomenon.

It all started, of course, with The Wiggles. Four washed-up, never-quite-made-it pop stars in different-coloured skivvies who thought it’d be a good idea to make up a few monotonously repetitive songs (not unlike their previous recordings) for the kiddies, only to become an instant, over-night hit, owing to their boppy tunes, saccharine smiles and muscular torsos (which succeeded in keeping the Mums very happy indeed). Their success was helped along by the introduction of a fluffy green dinosaur suit, a brown dog, a purple octopus, a red sports car and a fairly, implausibly peace-loving pirate. Their rise was dramatic and impressive. The Wiggles have now lent their images to a cartoon, and have spawned an internationally sought after merchandising franchise. They are, and have been for some time now, the kings of children’s television!

But poor old Sam, Murray, Jeff and Anthony are getting a little old, nowadays, to be still wearing those skivvies. It seems that their rapid success, having gone to their heads pretty quickly, soon bounced off their inner craniums, and headed straight for their waistlines, resulting in those slim, young bundles of smiling energy looking a little more like sad, leering, recovering alcoholics who seem to be getting just a little too close to those poor little children.

This metamorphosis, although having been missed by most parents who had stopped buying the DVDs after their first couple of releases, did not go unnoticed by entrepreneurial types in businesses suits up the high end of town, nor did The Wiggles’ rapid, multi-million dollar success, and before long, they had done their market research and introduced some new players on the scene.

First came HI-5; five young, funky things who looked like they’d strolled right out of a rave and into the studio – wearing Lycra, face paint and Indian bindis on their foreheads, they were a cyclone of fresh air, both for the kids and for the dads, who had grown tired of storming around living rooms while both child and wife sat transfixed, staring at the bouncing Wiggles with drool hanging out the corners of their mouths. HI-5 offered a little bit of titillation to the male parent, who soon became as hooked as their children on the monotonous, repetitive songs and movement of the new players. True to form, their wider-reaching appeal also spawned a merchandising success story, as the suits in glass building towers had predicted they would, and their cartoon likenesses, with their Manga-like, embellished lashes and cleavage, have also become a recognised trademark across the globe.

Perhaps a little late on the scene, but also following the formula of coloured shirts, fluffy animals and catchy tunes, were The Hooley Dooleys. Unfortunately for them, they have missed the cartoon likeness and merchandising boats, preventing their ever becoming overnight billionaires, however their delayed debut on the competitive, infant-mind-control scene has given this never-quite-made-it country and western trio plenty of time to do their homework, allowing them to produce a product which, through calculated, mental manipulation, will guarantee them ongoing DVD sales, and a very comfortable early retirement indeed. It is The Hooley Dooleys which Mrs Donkey and I have been exposed to in considerable doses over the last two weeks. I have come to respect and fear them in a way that I would any evil, criminal masterminds, and I will state emphatically and passionately right here as I massage my mental scars, that The Hooley Dooleys MUST DIE!

At first glance, such as when, as a parent, you are trolling the children’s DVD section of the local store looking for something fresh and new since Baby Grumbles outgrew twenty-odd DVDs of The Wiggles and HI-5, you would see that The Hooley Dooleys are a pretty safe bet for your little one – all the usual elements are there; primary coloured shirts, a fluffy kangaroo and a big, purple teddy bear. They sing, they dance and it’s all good. Even after you get it home, and see that the first couple of viewings result in the desired effect (ie Bubs drifting off into gurgles and a coma), you’ll be happy with what The Hooley Dooleys have to offer.

But it’s after the third or fourth viewing that things start to appear … well, not quite right. The first thing you notice is that these guys are a bit creepy; they wear the coloured shirts, sure, but they also have some pretty strange, very high pants on. One guy always wears a hat, but during one scene, he takes it off to reveal a shiny pate, and a long, flowing white mullet down his back. To make him seem even stranger, while the other two are wearing the crazy, wacky high-pants, he’s simply sporting a black pair of shorts – did you get that? Bald + mullet + shorts = keep him away from my child!

Other things, at first glance, appear normal too, but they’re not. As I mentioned, tall, fluffy animals – a kangaroo and a big, purple teddy bear. But as one gets to know the Hooley Dooleys, one learns that the teddy bear is not a teddy bear at all, but something called a Doodad. The Doodad’s name is Tickle – are you hearing this? Tickle the Doodad. Hmmm.

The Hooley Dooleys have even followed the tried-and-tested formula of multi-cultural diversity, by having one member whose country of origin is not Australia; The Wiggles have Jeff, from an unidentified Southeast Asian country, and HI-5 have the exotic, sexy and provocative Asian play-thing, Kathleen. The Hooley Dooleys have Antoine, a Frenchman who happens to be the owner of the afore mentioned mullet and inappropriate trousers. But The Hooley Dooleys go one step further than their peers by making repeated reference to Antoine’s nationality, and by performing songs which are designed to teach kids French. Why? I couldn’t imagine, but it is consistent with the French Government’s global commitment to promoting French language and culture – could it be that The Hooley Dooleys, and Antoine in particular, are a French Government plant, in order to brainwash our children into blowing-up socially motivated minority groups, embracing nuclear testing in their own backyards, smoking at the dinner table and basically being loud and obnoxious at every opportunity? It certainly makes you wonder.

But inappropriate fashion, sexual innuendo and international conspiracy aside, the real problem with The Hooley Dooleys is their blatantly manipulative, hypnotising, brain washing music and dancing. I have been exposed to this horrifying social experiment for the past two weeks, and I can barely function. In the morning, my eyes haven’t yet been cleared of gunk before I am singing that stupid We are the Hooley Dooleys song. On the bog, I find myself humming The Lunar Beat, and by shave time, I’m shaking my arse to the BOTTOM Boogie.

At breakfast, I sit comatose beside my niece (who’s halfway through viewing number one for the day) and forget to drink my coffee, and when I finally wander off to work with my headphones in my ears, I find that even the whine of Bob Dylan can’t cut through the friggin’ Jungle Boogie that’s splitting my skull from the inside out. It goes on all day! The slightest reference tips me off into more Hooley F’n Dooleys! And I’m a grown, arguably educated Donkey! Imagine what this crud is doing to a developing, moulding mind … to the minds of an entire nation of young people! We’re talking about opium (kiddie formula) for the masses (of children aged 1-3).

Something has to be done before my, and Australia’s future leaders’ minds become Hooley Dooley mush. The Australian broadcasting censors obviously can’t be trusted to prevent this kind of dribble making it through the net, and it’s now being marketed to offshore audiences. All children, everywhere are at risk. The Hooley Dooleys must be stopped, and I call on the United Nations - on UNICEF to do something about it. The Hooley Dooleys MUST DIE!

But perhaps, if death by firing squad is not appropriate for those who commit systematic infanto-genocide, an International peace-keeping force to Australia to surround the homes of the Hooley Dooleys and place them under house arrest is indicated (that is if they haven’t already fled and been granted asylum in French territory in the Pacific by Antoine’s corrupt, high-ranking Government official brother). Yes, an International peace keeping force is just what we need, and I for one would be willing to assist with selection of an appropriately diverse peace-keeping contingent, complete with military personnel from a range of nations, including a couple of trigger-happy, Chinese PLA soldiers. Antoine, you bastard. I’ll give you Bubble and Squeak every day of the bloody week!

Bald + mullet + shorts = keep him away from my child! Pic:


BV said...

But, but, after the Hooley-Dooleys comes Miley's a natural progression.

Gledwood said...

is THAT how you spell the capital of Thailand..?

I always assumed it was "Bangcock"... or have I got "it" on the brain..??..!!..??..!


lucy said...

Oh no, hasn't Donkay suffered enough without the creepy creepy kids performers?

Btw - Who knew you were a doctor? Aren't you a smart donkay?

DonkeyBlog said...

BV - I had to google Miley Cyrus - I am sooooo out of touch with the youth ... but from what I've read, I'm kinda glad.

Loosey - not really a doctor. It's secret code ... it's all in the clues - sorry about the espionage.

lucy said...

But I'm dense donkay and sleep deprived, give me more ccllluuueeesss!!!!

Anonymous said...

Pizza, Pizza
I like to make-a da pizza
Mozzarella Cheese
Kids get on your knees..
Antoine is creepy, all the makings of a kiddie fiddler if you ask me.

Anonymous said...

Thats not how it goes....

Pizza pizza
I like to make a pizza
Tomato and the cheese
Pizza pizza please

Thats how it goes