Wednesday, July 26, 2006

PBS's decision to terminate Melanie Martinez, the host of their preschool program PBS Kids Sprout, over a suggestive 30-second spot she appeared in seven years ago is ridiculous, sexist, reactionary, and wrong.

A Notice to Parents Regarding the Good Night Show

Melanie's previous work as an actress, which took place prior to her relationship with PBS and is in no way connected with her work as host of the children's show, should have no bearing on her ability to act in her role as Melanie on PBS's Good-Night Show.

The assumption that parents across the board are unable/unwilling to accept that professionals working in any entertainment field may produce work for both child and adult audiences is insulting and offensive to me as a parent.

Their implication is that we should expect actors and artists who perform for children to always and exclusively produce work that is appropriate for children. That idea is preposterous and dangerously shortsighted.

In going to this extreme to protect itself from the anticipated backlash of a vocal minority, PBS has done a disservice to the preschool audience who benefited from Melanie Martinez's warm, engaging portrayal of the Melanie character on their program.

2 comments:

Gary O'Brien said...

Plus Gert really liked Melanie. How do we explain her disappearance? Funny, it's like they're drawing attention to this. If they had just supported her, Gert wouldn't be sad because someone she considered a friend is no longer there.

Kind of how I felt about Randolph Mantooth when they canceled Emergency.

Lunasea said...

I'm late to this, but...um, George Carlin narrates many of the Thomas stories. And Ringo Starr was on the Thomas show for a while. And Sesame Street regulars have been in pretty risque roles, too - they don't seem to care. Seems pretty hypocritical to me.