CBeebies Sparks Debate Among Parents After Character Bing Kills Butterfly

Do you think this is too harsh for kids' TV?

09/09/2016 10:58

Parents have debated whether it was right for CBeebies to show a character killing a butterfly during the show ‘Bing’.

The kids’ channel warned parents about the scene via Facebook on the morning of Thursday 8 September.

“*WARNING** Bing catches a butterfly at 9:10 and 13:10 today,” the Facebook status read.

“He grasps a little too tight, so be prepared to answer your little one’s questions when the butterfly doesn’t wake up.”

The status was accompanied by a photo of Bing’s hands holding the butterfly.

Some parents were pleased that the BBC channel had warned them about what was going to happen so they could approach the topic with their children.

“I love how Bing is so gentle for kids and shows them real-life learning tools,” one mother wrote. 

“It’s a good programme, it shows children how they need to be careful with animals/insects. It also shows them how things do die.”

A dad wrote: “We love Bing in our house. He may not be the best behaved bunny but the sort of things he’s done are things every toddler has done/will do at some point.

“Every episode Bing learns his lesson and is teaching our children that lesson too. I think it’s a great show for that reason.”

However others argued the scene was too harsh for a children’s TV show.

“That, son, is called murder and in some places Bing would be taken away,” one person wrote.

Another complained, writing: “Bing has so many bad habits such as impatience and snatching and breaking other characters’ stuff. He’s so mardy.

“I know it’s a kids cartoon but I don’t want my son thinking these things are ok to do just because Bing does them.”

Addressing the debate, a BBC spokesperson told The Huffington Post UK: “CBeebies often reflects the experiences of our young audience through its characters including emotions, certain behaviours and issues they may come across in their own lives.

“Bing’s intention wasn’t to harm the butterfly but he was a little over zealous as young children can often be and he was very upset when the butterfly died.

“A slightly sad, but cautionary tale that parents/carers and young children will be able to discuss together.

“The episode was flagged to parents on social media beforehand.”

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