Bluey is quite possibly the most wholesome show that has ever graced our televisions. We seriously don’t deserve this show. The Australian cartoon features a family of Blue Heeler dogs that are beloved by all ages (my husband and I swear it’s as much for adults as it is for kids). In most episodes, the kids play pretend with their parents and learn valuable life lessons along the way.
The show has been praised for its accurate depictions of family life. Seriously, I’ve never felt as seen as when they showed the backseat of the Heeler’s car.
It’s inconceivable that this show could possibly be offensive. Right? Oh no, dear reader. This is the internet so someone’s going to find something. They always do. This time the internet warriors-at-large have decided that Bluey is “fat phobic.”
The season 3 episode, “Exercise,” has become the ire of many for its depiction of weight loss and body image. At the beginning of the episode, we see Bandit step in the scale and lament the number he sees. He pinches his waist as his children pop out and ask him what he’s doing. He tells them he needs to exercise. The rest of the episode is spent with Bandit playing with his kids while exercising and teaching them the value of a healthy lifestyle. In the end, the whole family vows to make positive changes and prioritize exercise.
This wholesome lesson has caused quite a stir. Many have criticized the episode for emphasizing weight and appearance as indicators of health. They feel this is not a lesson children need as it creates body image issues. They feel children should instead be taught that exercise is important for everyone, regardless of weight.
I adore @OfficialBlueyTV & the messages it sends. Except in the latest episode “Exercise”, where weight becomes a trigger for exercise. Watching Bandit stand on scale& squeeze his belly, frowning, sends a msg to kids that fat = bad & exercise = weight loss. V upsetting. #Bluey pic.twitter.com/68GAWzNeLk
— Psychocinematic Podcast (@psychocinematic) April 16, 2023
Others feel this is an example of adults over-thinking things and perverting a heartwarming episode of a father playing with his daughters (yes, Bluey is a girl).
One person pointed out that he felt people are taking the episode way too personally and over reacting:
Bandit from Bluey: “I personally want to exercise and lose some weight.”
The Internet: “What do you mean you want to commit genocide on fat people?”
— Michael Challis ? (@NoveltyRaging) April 18, 2023
While another empathized with Bandit and his lack of personal time:
I'm fat, I watched THAT clip & all I thought was 'why are there so many characters in the bathroom?!?' Get out, the lot of you. Bluey's Dad is fat because he gets no 'me time', I fully understand his predicament. Tee hee
— Just Janelle (@Bundynelle) April 17, 2023
This episode of Bluey is currently only available in Australia. Disney Jr. Is relasing season 3 in the United States but on a delayed timetable. The episode did make an appearance on YouTube for a short time for ABC (Australian Brodcating Corperation) to promote the new season.