If you know, you know…

Blippi is a bit of a divisive character in the world of parenting. The bespectacled children’s entertainer rose to prominence on YouTube where his inclusive ‘to camera’ monologues, quirky jerky dancing and songs about monster trucks and excavators — have translated into 37 million subscribers with an avergae of one billion views per month. He’s essentially Kylie Jenner for pre-schoolers. Barney for the pandemic generation.

And whilst the orange and blue colour scheme along with frenzied enthusiasm about whether things ‘float or sink’, can be a jarring sight at 4am —  if we’re honest, Blippi has stepped up and tagged in, on parenting our children when we’ve been too bleary-eyed and half-asleep to do a proper job of it ourselves. For that Blippi, we salute you.

What’s your favouite colour?

So, if you are a parent, there’s probably a heady mix of emotions on hearing the announcement that Blippi will be bringing a musical version of his show to the stage of Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Arena on February 18 and 19 of 2023. Happy Valentine’s Day to us all.

Blippi The Musical will land in the capital following a sell out 500 show tour in North America and the UK. Tickets to see the Abu Dhabi leg are priced from Dhs105 and are available from the  etihadarena.ae website. There are also Meet and Greets available from Dhs185.

Will the real Blippi please stand up

The Blippiverse is a confusing place. The original Blippi — the creator of the character, real name Stevin John, has recently become a parent and is taking some well-earned paternity leave (although we suspect he’s still Blippi-ing to an audience of one). Before he hung up his flat cap, John spawned a clone played by Clayton Grimm (who will likely be the one taking the stage at the Etihad Arena).

Grimm has taken over Blippi reins for both the YouTube channel and the live world tour. Proving that — like love, fear and the music of Bob Marley — Blippi is a concept that transcends flesh, an ephemeral light, perhaps there’s a little orange and blue in all of us.

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Blippi also now has a female counterpart, Meekah (Kaitlin Becker) who is the latest graduate from the Bippiversity and has even landed her own Netflix show. She’s gone for a purple and orange colour scheme, but the signature braces remain as does the hyper-caffeinated enthusiastic approach to play-lead learning. A small but valued win for gender equality in the Blippiverse. But all of this has us wondering, what can we as adults learn from Blippi?

Searching for meaning in Blippi song lyrics

In ‘The Blippi Tools Song‘, we’re delivered the refrain “when you’re working with tools, you hear all kinds of things”. Are we to assume that the street poet simply means hammer thuds and sawing noises, or is he perhaps asking us to look at our colleagues, to hear but not listen to the gossipy chatter? Is he leading us to question programmed learning, educational biases from the machine of institutionalised academia? Probably not.

If we dissect the popular ‘Excavator‘ ballad, one of the verses proclaims “Oh, can’t you see that I don’t have feet, I roll on tracks to get to where I need to be”. Should we then treat this as a self-empowerment anthem? Are feet an emblematic representative of external coddling? Is “I roll on tracks” the most gangster rap thing Blippi has ever said? We’ll likely never know.

The Monster Truck Song‘ truly is one of Blippi’s most important lyrical masterworks, and it contains within it, this absolute gem “monster trucks can jump so high, I wonder if they can jump over the moon”. If we take this literally, it’s a preposterous rumination. The escape velocity of earth is 11 kilometres per second, well beyond the capabilities of any monster truck, not to mention their lack of lunar navigational equipment. But what if the monster truck isn’t a monster truck, and the moon isn’t truly a moon? Is it possible, dear reader, that Blippi is asking us to look within and experiment with the dissolution of our own monster truck, our ego? No?

A ‘toddler sleep regression’ YouTube rabbit hole can be a dangerous place to think from.

Images: Provided