VeggieTales, the popular Christian children’s show, is now, finally, on TV. They’ve always billed themselves as “Sunday Morning Values & Saturday Morning Fun” Well, they now have Saturday Morning fun because they’re on NBS every Saturday, including 3-2-1 Penguins and Larry Boy Adventures in a separate time slot. Cool, huh? Well, yeah.
Problem: they gutted it. They removed Qwerty, our favorite Bible-verse-spouting (and Pong-playing) computer and pretty much every reference to God. They redid the openings and closings, and they even eliminated the video game fight in the first episode of 3-2-1 Penguins: Trouble on Planet Wait-Your-Turn. So yeah, each story still has a moral, and it’s in line with conservative Christian morality, but I keep waiting for Larry to say, “Now I know!” to which Bob responds, “And knowing is half the battle. GI Joe!”
Now admittedly, VeggieTales was never big on Gospel. It was mainly a series of morality plays with the exception of their Christmas and Easter specials, but even so, they at least ended with a Gospel message: “God made you special, and He loves you very much.” Now, that’s gone. I know Big Idea Productions had to do this, not as an ego trip, but because they were practically bankrupt. They’re hoping this will encourage people to buy the DVDs, which are still in their original versions, so think of them as half-hour commercials for the DVD. Will it work? Only time will tell.
What lesson do we learn from this? Well, many. Don’t put all your eggs in one whale’s mouth (And BTW, the Jonah movie had a nice Gospel theme.). Don’t ever think your empire can’t topple. And unlike grilled cheese sandwiches and oyster shells, you won’t be seeing Jesus on network TV anytime soon. Oh, and one more: no matter what you fail in, God made you special, and for Jesus’ sake, He still loves you very much.