United Kingdom

ABC TV show Bluey is attacked for not having 'disabled, queer or single-parent dog families'

Hit children's cartoon show Bluey has come under attack for failing to have any characters that are disabled, queer, poor or gender diverse. 

Journalist Beverley Wang slammed the ABC program's lack of diversity in a piece for the national broadcaster's own Everyday Life website, where she opened-up about her 'struggles' with the Emmy award-winning show. 

She asked why Bluey, set in Brisbane, was not 'more representative' of the city it is based in, while acknowledging her comments 'may come across as asking too much of a show that's already so tender, nuanced and joyful'.   

'Where are the disabled, queer, poor, gender diverse, dogs of colour and single-parent dog families in Bluey's Brisbane?,' Ms Wang wrote.   

Hit children's animated series Bluey has come under fire for lacking diversity, with a journalist asking why the ABC program did not have any characters that were disabled or queer

Journalist Beverley Wang (pictured) penned a piece for the ABC's Everyday Life website, where she asked 'Where are the disabled, queer, poor, gender diverse, dogs of colour and single-parent dog families in Bluey's Brisbane'  

'If they're in the background, let them come forward. (Maynard, voiced by Sean Choolburra, I'm looking at you.)' 

Mr Choolburra is a Girramay, Kalkadoon, Pitta Pitta and Gugu Yalanji man, who voices the character of Maynard, which is described as a 'small role' in the series.  

Ms Wang said as a parent of colour, she was 'conscious of the presence - or absence - of diverse representation in kids' pop culture'. 

'We live in a world where the majority of main characters on children's television are white; where there are more animals than people of colour protagonists populating the pages of children's books,' she said.  

Bluey, dubbed Australia's most popular children's television show, follows the adventures of 'a loveable, inexhaustible six year-old Blue Heeler dog' along with her family which includes her mum, dad and younger sister, and her friends. 

Responding to criticism of her comments on Twitter, Ms Wang said she penned the piece - 'I've learnt a lot from Bluey, but can the show be more representative?' - because she believed the show could do better with its character selection. 

'This piece is essentially a love letter to a Bluey, plus a very gently-phrased wish to see if a great show can push itself to do even better. I know I'm not alone with my questions (and love) for Bluey,' Ms Wang said. 

One person who slammed Ms Wang's piece said: 'These people are obsessed with pushing their unhinged ideology onto two-year children who literally have no idea about sexism, racism etc'.

Ms Wang asked whether Blue, an Emmy-award winning program, could 'be more representative' with its choice of characters 

Ms Wang responded: 'Apparently I have an "unstable mind", "I'm obsessed" and "unhinged" for politely wondering whether Bluey's Brisbane can be more like the real Brisbane. 

'It just goes to show that politics are everywhere, and representation matters. Thanks for proving my point.' 

Bluey, created by Brisbane-based Ludo Studio and set in the Queensland capital, is ABC iView's most watched program. 

The animated series won the Kids: Preschool Award at the 2019 International Emmys.

Daley Pearson, Executive Producer of Bluey and Director, Ludo Studio, said at the time of the award win, the series was a 'beautiful show celebrating one of the most important things: imagination and game play'. 

Libbie Doherty, ABC Head of Children's Content, said: 'ABC Children's is proud to broadcast Bluey for our young viewers, helping them laugh, dance and play everyday.'

Daily Mail Australia contacted Ludo Studio for comment. 

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