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Caillou Creator responds to LGGG

Once again –  Lady Goo Goo Gaga had a great week via social media!!

Thank you to all that commented and shared my blog last week. Whether it was my commentary on absurd baby nurseries or absurd Pottery Barn lunches I appreciate all of your comments and likes!!
The beauty of blogging is that it gets your voice out there into the world – and it’s nice to hear some voices responding back to what I write.
This reminded me that I am overdue in sharing some Facebook messages that I received a few months ago.
I met a couple in town a couple of weeks ago through a mutual friend.  The couple was French and had a few older children.  They spoke with thick French accents and we were getting along famously exchanging parenting stories and experiences.
As we were talking, inevitably my blog came up.  In an effort to explain it, I said “Oh, you know I just blog about stuff that’s annoying like…Caillou.”
“What’s Caillou?” the woman inquired.
“Oh, it’s a cartoon about a boy who is actually French…the woman who created him is from Quebec.” I answered.
“And why is annoying?” she asked firmly.
“Um….well you know…he whines… he’s annoying and bratty….”
“Hmmm…well the creator must have made him a brat for the American audience…” she sniffed.  “We don’t let children behave like the Americans…”
She was dead serious and then it occurred to me, she might be right.
Maybe I was too quick to throw show creator, Helene Desputeaux, and illustrator, Michel Aubin, under the bus…maybe they thought they were making Calliou and his asshole family and cats relatable to us fat, stupid Americans. Maybe she thinks that all American parents are dumb and too lazy to change out of their enormous turtleneck sweaters.
Did you think if you just had these losers rolling around on a blanket eating sandwiches all day then we would like them? Nice try Frenchies...nice try.

Did you think if you just had these losers rolling around on a blanket eating sandwiches all day then we would like them? Nice try Frenchies…nice try.

I am more offended than ever!! These French people are constantly writing books about how much better than us they are.  They raise nice smart children and we raise bratty whiners, they are skinny and we are fat.
We get it French people!! You are better and skinnier parents than us….but Caillou is where I draw the line!!!!
Look how fucking pasty and puffy these people are!! I am sorry to disappoint you Michel but all American mothers do not have a huge muffin-top!

Look how fucking pasty and puffy these people are!! I am sorry to disappoint you Michel but all American mothers and grandmothers do not have huge muffin-tops that hang over their pants and ill-fitting headbands!  This is just rude!!

A few months ago, both the creator as well as the illustrator, reached out to me with desperate messages of redemption, after reading my post about how much I hate Caillou.
If I could remember any French I think I would be a lot better off – but I will try to interpret as best as I can.
Below is the Facebook message sent by Helene….
Hélène Desputeaux I’m the creator of caillou. L’éditeur et cinar/ cookie jar ont “adapté” mon visuel sans mon autorisation … Caillou, dans mon œuvre n’est qu’un petit bébé, pas un “mésadapté”, voire déficient de 4 ans, sans cheveux. On n’a jamais tenu compte de mon avis, mon expertise de pédagogue et de mon travail de créatrice. Alors, SVP, ne me mettez pas l’insignifiance de cette série sur le dos. Je n’y suis pour rien! Le caillou de cinar/cookie jar: the silly killer of my life and work!
If I understand correctly I think it basically says that Caillou is her “petite baby” and that she loves him.  I think that “sans cheveux” means “without a hat” – so I think that’s a reference to the fact that he has alopecia and he apparently lost his hat.I thought the “cookie jar” was some reference to us being fat again but in the end I think she is saying that “cookie jar” is the production company that “killed her life and work.”

For a split second I felt sad for her – because basically I was making fun of her creation….but then I took one more gander at the kid….
Here he is having one of his famous temper tantrums.  Ugh, I am sorry Helene for your troubles...but this kid is a huge douchebag....

Here he is having one of his famous temper tantrums. Ugh, I am sorry Helene for your troubles…but this kid is a huge douchebag….

And then this more concise message came from show illustrator, Michel Aubin:
michel aubin | July 24, 2013 at 1:40 pm | Edit

bonjour !

To children, desputeaux+aubin offers albums, like so many hugs and kisses, that portray the colourful little world of Hélène Desputeaux, the creator of Caillou. In 2006, because of never-ending legal hearings concerning her baby Caillou …and after having seen her graphic universe transformed in a multitude of reproductions, …Hélène Desputeaux set up, with Michel Aubin, her own production house…then, holding brush and pencil, Hélène Desputeaux has been creating new books with her genuine baby Caillou, her little Mella and a string of endearing characters! … in 2012 Hélène Desputeaux wait after her royalties from cinar/cookiejar/dhx and she always don’t know what they do with her graphic universe … with her Caillou … and finally she learn by canadian press that Caillou was sold again ! and so  it’s a « wagonload of Caillou license deals » … always with her graphic universe … with her Caillou  ! a wagonload of suprise !

Voilà !

 au plaisir … et salutations du Québec !

M i c h e l   A u b i n

So basically – that’s confirming in fact that neither of these people are taking responsiblity for Caillou’s behavior.  Basically – it is the fault of the Americans and “Cookie Jar” productions that Caillou is a huge asshole that is bald and prone to tantrums.
In closing, I think Michel said it best when he said that
“Caillou is a wagonload of surprise.”
That’s putting it nicely.
The message here is clear.
If you want your children to grow up wearing normal clothes sans puffy turtlenecks, and you would like them to respond appropriately to disappointments in life without melting into huge temper tantrums, then avoid the Caillou program at all costs.

20 responses »

  1. I hate this show and actually, I hate all childrens programming of the last ten years.

  2. power to the Ga Ga

    *fist raised*

  3. This is hilarious! I hate Caillou. I have two boys ages 4 and 6. My six year old used to watch Caillou all the time, but my husband and I quit allowing it. He’s irresponsible and whiny just like you said. The clincher for us was the episode where his grandmother comes to pick him up from a friend’s house where they are playing dress-up. He takes his costume off, throws it on the floor and he and Grandma walk out together. Are you kidding me?! He is a douche.

  4. I’m not sure who is worse though: Caillou, who whines and is a total brat or…DORA WHO SHOUTS AT ME ALL DAY LONG.

    • Dora has freaky eyes, they never move! But have any of you ever experienced Peppa Pig? Daddy Pig looks and sounds like my ex-husband along with the snorts.

  5. Just one correction to your anti-French ranting: the book you refer to was written by an American expat living in Paris, apparently under a spell of blind love for the French… Being a Franco-American mother myself, I was interested in the topic and talked about it with a number of friends who basically share my view: the thesis of the book is a gross generalization, “the French” are all very different and raise their children in very different ways, and, of course, encounter the same difficulties with discipline, authority, parenting, staying fit, giving their kids good eating habits,…, as Americans!!!!
    Don’t succomb to the temptation of racism- even against the French! Be a little smarter than that, everyone (on both sides of the big water)!
    As nations, the Americans and the French have had a love-hate relationship forever, and use it at turns for self-assersion (trashing the other one), or self-depreciation (glorifying the other). Let’s also keep this in mind…

    Friendly regards,

  6. The fact that Caillou is bald while the rest of them, including his little sister, has hair bugs the shit out of me. As does Max & Ruby, the apparently orphaned rabbits that have managed to escape social services and live by themselves with an unlimited supply of toys and food. Also, clearly I have way too many opinions about children’s cartoons.

    • Me too Nikki. My daughter hates it when I, the grandma go off on one of my Max and Ruby rants, which is often followed by a Bubble guppies rant.

  7. I just found your blog and think you’re hilarious! I’m a seasoned mom (oldest 19, youngest 10), and I love your take on things.
    ps. I have always hated bald, as my husband and I refer to him as, Cai-Poo!

  8. I remember being so relieved when I realized that other people hated Caillou and his freakish family as much as I did. The mom especially – you feel like she just never got her shit back together after being pregnant with Rosie.

  9. I just don’t understand why Caillou is like 6 years old and BALD.

  10. AHHHHHH…. I spent my daughters toddler years doing my best to avoid that show!!! You are so right, so annoying.

    white lion moving company blogger group

  11. Thank God my kids NEVER watched Caillou. I found this blog from others who shared the Pottery Barn People post. HUH.LARRY.US! So I’ve spent the last 2 days reading every single post you’ve ever written — just finished. (We’re practically BFFs now.) I haven’t cooked or cleaned anything and my eyes are swimming, but I had a great time!

  12. In the 11 years since my wife and I began being parents, this is the first time that I’ve encountered another parent with as much hatred toward that little brat. I’m so relieved that it isn’t just me. We let our oldest daughter watch it occasionally when she was a toddler, but I refused to let our youngest daughter watch.

    He drives me crazy. His parents drive me crazy. The theme song drives me crazy.

  13. My kids have an ongoing joke that Caillou’s mom is so much nicer than I am!!!

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  15. Merely a smiling visitor here to share the love , btw outstanding style. Audacity, a lot more audacity and always audacity. by Georges Jacques Danton. aebkdfeddkbg


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