08 June 2009


Have you seen the new Disney series Jonas? It's the one about Kevin, Joe, and Nick, better known as The Jonas Brothers. (They also have a little brother who, while no cuter than that ghastly little Jimmy Osmond was, has the grand benefit of being referred to as "Bonus Jonas.")

Jonas (the series): Picture the Monkees, mixed with a little Partridge Family (but with two parents) and, in a particuarly good episode, a dash of a G-rated Flight of the Conchords parody song thrown in for good measure. (I had thought each episode had a song, but I just witnessed one without -- and, I must admit, I missed it, although the plot of remaking the Jonas Family home movies that they had accidentally destroyed was, in fact, cute.)

As much as I don't want to like them, I fear I do....well, apart from their needing a good haircut or at least a comb.

The good news is that last Father's Day my daughters gave me a Jonas Brothers pillow, so my fan-ness has some street cred (at least as far as chronology goes -- and at least as far as Jonas, "street cred" and "I" can be mentioned in the same breath without laughing).

BUT, if you have time to watch only one show aimed at the youngish set, then it shouldn't be Jonas anyway, that honor goes to iCarly on Nickelodeon.

High-schooler Carly, best friend Sam(antha), and boy-who-loves-Carly/webcamera guy Freddie, put on regular web program upstairs in her room, while her older brother/guardian/artist Spencer tries not to burn their place down. (No parents here to interfere, although the practical uncle is always a threat to take Carly away.)

Here we have the web generation doing what several generations of American youth have traditionally done -- goof around, make dumb jokes, laugh at any stupid stuff that comes to mind -- but then, as only this generation has ever been able to do, share it for all the world to see. The jokes are probably no funnier than those we thought of as kids, but the intimacy of those inside jokes can potentially reach a much wider audience. The hope, of course, is that the extended intimacy inspires the audience to its own merriment and creativity, while the real fear is that the audience will simply sit back passively and not act or react at all.

Come to think of it, kinda like a blog, no?

1 comment:

  1. iCarly was a favorite of my sons. Now that he doesn't watch any more... neither can I. I agree it was (is) good kid humor and did inspire some technological tom foolery from my son. I miss the occasional goofy phone-sent video short while at work. Now it's just the brief (boring) text message.