Editor’s note: The following essay appears in the Fall 2021 issue of Eikon.
“Does Bluey being blue ruin gender stereotypes?”
This was the question a reader asked after I recommended the Australian preschool cartoon “Bluey,” a show about a six-year-old puppy and the make-believe games she enjoys with her younger sister and parents. As I said in my WORLD Magazine review of the show, the Heeler household at the center of the stories, being modern city dwellers, are quite a bit removed from the Leave it To Beaver model of yesteryear. Yet, whether intentionally or not, their interactions mirror biblical gender paradigms within the framework of how nuclear families live today.
Dad, the primary breadwinner, is an archaeologist who often works from home, thus providing childcare for his two daughters whenever his wife is away at her part-time job. Yet his parenting style is distinctly fatherly—teasing, tough, and a little more rambunctious than Mom’s more careful,…