Teletubbies! Yes, I’m Serious!

Dept. of Trippy Tirades


No dear reader, you are not reading that headline wrong. I, Nick Dorian, indeed went over the hill and far away, with the Teletubbies, I went to play. But before we begin this little journey, allow me to give you a little bit of context.

Growing up, the Teletubbies were always a little strange and oddly disturbing to me. Having been brought up on Sesame Street and The Muppets, seeing these jumpy, ecstatic creatures, seemed too basic for my liking. And so, I left them relegated back where they belonged, in that weird time known as the late 1990s. Fast forward to a week ago. With the unexpected return of the Tubbies on Netflix, I jokingly told my best friend that we should get slightly intoxicated and watch these four strange things run around. Before I knew it, I was sitting on their couch, filling myself with herbs that a certain ex-health minister would be proud of, and watching a show I vowed never to see.

After posting my adventure on my Instagram Stories, my ever-loving bosses here at Goggler, in their infinite wisdom, thought it prudent that I write about my experience. And so here we are. Get ready. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.

Tinky Winky, Dipsy, Laa-Laa, Po


Now, don’t get me wrong. I completely understand that I am not exactly the target market for this show (although, if you read on, maybe I am). Teletubbies feel like they’re for those three years and below. And for that demographic, it remains a great show. It’s filled with bright colours, songs, energy, and all-around good times. Teletubbies, whether we like them or not, mainstreamed the whole early toddler TV shows for an entire generation. It is a British institution. But that’s not what we’re here today to talk about. Nope. I am here to give you a little glimpse of what the Teletubbies are like from a highly intoxicated thirty something writer with clearly nothing better to do with his time.

First things first. How are these four creatures so incredibly, dumb? I get it, this is for little babies, but even an embryo is smarter than these four combined. It honestly makes so much sense for the narrator to be there. In most films and TV shows, the narrator serves the purpose of driving the story along and filling in the gaps. Not here. The narrator’s purpose in this show, is to literally tell the Tubbies what to do. Every. Single. Time. It’s makes me wish there was an episode where the narrator takes a holiday and all the Tubbies go into crisis mode because their brain has been taken away from them. For an alien species, they certainly aren’t the higher life form.

Speaking of narrators, one of the reasons I would even remotely entertain the thought of watching this horror was because Tituss Burgess took on the role this time. There was no way I could turn down the opportunity to hear Titus Andromedon once again. His calm, soothing, chirpy voice, was a bright ray of sunshine following the horrific monsoon that was the Teletubbies. (Business Idea: Splice all the clips of Titus talking, combine them with the soothing orchestral music, and turn that into daily self-help tapes. Boom.)

But let’s get back to their stupidity. Over, and over, and over again, the one thing that made my blood boil was the Tubby Phone. Every goddamn time that freaking phone rings, the Tubbies take an. absolute eternity to get to it. They do a dance. They slowly get on an elevator. THEY TAKE A TRAIN RIDE AROUND THE GARDEN FIRST. And that’s not even the worst part. The phone is sectioned into four colours, representing each Tubby. So whichever colour it’s on, that’s who answers. Sounds clear right? NOT TO THESE TUBBY MONSTERS. They need to each press their own colour first, yell out their name, and then, AND ONLY THEN, can the actual recipient answer the damn phone. And you know what’s even more frustrating? The idiot on the other end keeps calling them back. I would have never called this household ever again.

Oh, Bibbily Cheese!


The one thing I have to give the show credit for is their dedication to diversity and inclusivity. Within the song and dance routines, children from all walks of life are showcased and given their time on that small stage. The sun baby has now been reformed into a different baby with each episode, again from all races and walks of life. It is a fantastic thing for all children to see this and feel included. It’s what the Tubbies do best.

But that doesn’t take away from the fact that some of the lessons they teach may not necessarily employ the best pedagogy.

For a show that’s meant to teach kids as well as entertain (thus the phrase “edutainment”), the Tubbies aren’t really the best examples of how to live. Heck, they probably belong on an episode of “Roommates from Hell.” They run around, scream, wake each other up, leave a mess with every meal they eat, and force this poor little vacuum machine, Noo-Noo, to clean it all up. That poor fella looks like he’s about to have a full-on mental breakdown at any moment. It’s in his eyes. The eyes don’t lie.

But the worst crime that this show perpetrates is in its song and dance routines. For kids, it’s great. Maybe. For an adult like me? They are the most annoyingly catchy songs you will ever hear. And not in a good way. God bless her, I’m sure the the actress who took on this thankless job is a great and wonderful person, but I just need her to tone down that energy by about 20%. It is way too much positive energy for one day. And guess what? Just when you think the whole routine is over, what do the Tubbies say? “Again! Again!” And you guessed it! We’re back into the depths of Tubby underworld once more.

Tubby Custard!


As an adult, I have no idea how anyone on set maintained their sanity? The amount of time spent having the Tubbies walk around in circles, or dance repeatedly, or just keep yelling “Tubby Toast,” is enough to make Mr. Rogers lose his mind. I guess I have to give credit to every single person within this entire production. This would not have been an easy job and you lot deserve all kinds of rewards for the suffering you had to go through. This might be the pinnacle of dedication to your craft.

Before I wrap up my free flowing and random thoughts about Teletubbies, I should state that, yes, I did indeed torture myself and watch all 26, 15 minute episodes of this show. Every dance, every laugh, every scream, every Tubby Phone, I saw it all. And you know why? Because I’m a professional goddamn it! Was it worth it? I don’t know. Have I lost my sanity? Maybe a little bit. Would I do it again? Fuck no. I just want to go home. Can I please go home now?

Teletubbies are now streaming on Netflix.

Nick Dorian spent most of his childhood dreaming of being a plumber, mainly because he loved watching Super Mario go on adventures. When he heartbreakingly discovered actual plumbers don't go on great adventures in real life, he went on to sit in front of a TV or movie screen, watching more people go on adventures, and then talk to anybody around him about what he's seen, whether they liked it or not. Fast forward to today, he somehow managed to make watching movies and TV shows, and discussing them, an actual living. Which goes to show, dreams do come true. Except when you dream of being an Italian plumber who fights mushrooms and toads.

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