Adults Can Enjoy the Teletubbies Too!

The following was posted to the Teletubbies mailing list in an effort to explain why many adults find a special attraction to the Teletubbies.

From: "Teletubbies Mailing List" <>
By: "Greg" <>

I've not read much fantasy in my life because, when needed, I seem to be able to come up with a fantasy of my own. The elusive "better place" inside each of us, is a reason that some begin to search for "themselves," and for alternative or spiritual views on reality.

Sometimes we need a mentor to guide us -- when we lose sight of our center, and our sense of well being. The Teletubbies are a reminder of this "better place" in much the same way that Robert Louis Stevenson's "A Child's Garden of Verses" and another famous story, "The Little Prince" are reminders.

A Zen master referred to those two books as the greatest in Western literature, and he was not being facetious. And, though human kind may never find "Over The Hills And Far Away," we can envision that we might, and imagine that those we love share it with us.

The "reality" of Teletubby-land is a "special place" that lives in our imagination and reminds us of our vulnerability.

P.S. Then again, again, maybe not ...

The following was posted to the Teletubbies mailing list in response to an article that had appeared in a German newspaper. The article discussed how the set for the Teletubbies show was to be "bulldozed" at the end of filming to restore the site to it's original, country-like, state in an effort to be environmentally-friendly to the general area.

From: "Teletubbies Mailing List" <>
By: "Ruth Elleson" <>

You have all missed something crucial here.

Tinky-winky, Dipsy, Laa-laa, and Po are not about to be made homeless. Teletubby-land -- the real Teletubby-land -- will never be bulldozed. It will go on forever and ever. The thing that's being bulldozed isn't where the 'tubbies live. Oh no!

To say that would be to imply that humans were actually capable of infiltrating Teletubby-land which, of course, cannot and will not ever happen. Teletubby-land is "over the hills and far away," so well-hidden that no human will ever find it. It goes on as far as the eye can see in all directions. Saying that Teletubby-land will be bulldozed is utter slander -- the only worse thing that anybody could say would be that the 'tubbies aren't real at all, they're just humans in giant alien babygros.

No, no, no! What they're bulldozing is some insignificant little pit in Warwickshire which, for half an hour each morning, serves as a film-set to capture the highlights of 'tubby-life. To get rid of this is quite the opposite of a tragedy. It will simply mean that the 'tubbies no longer have to work for the BBC for half an hour every day. They can retire to the real Teletubby-land which is infinitely huge, beautiful, timeless, and idyllic where nobody -- not even wickle wambs -- will ever be sad again. And the Tubby-Toaster will no longer go wrong (that was the BBC's fault); Laa-laa can have all the guitar lessons she needs; Po's scooter will never squeak again, the Sun Baby will smile down on their happy, peaceful, and playful lives forever and ever.

Hey! How many people on this list have read right up to the end of the Chronicles of Narnia? Think about it ...

From: -- Totally Teletubbied
By: Jenny Brown, video editor

The baby-faced sun peeks its head over the horizon and squeals a tittering laugh. A tinkle of oddly seductive notes sounds as we soar over a lush green landscape dotted with psychedelically bright flowers. When the narrator gently intones, "Over the hills and far away, Teletubbies come to play," we're more than ready for the stars of PBS's latest entry into children's programming: a waddling gaggle of powder-puff-shaped Tubbies, in all their pastel glory. Though they're geared toward one-and-a-half-year-olds, there's a compelling, surreal edge to the show. Teletubbies are the video equivalent of Valium, and lots of grownups are hooked.

College kids watch together; adults tune in while getting ready for work. According to PBS, the show helps develop a sense of humor, encourages listening, promotes affection, and builds self-esteem, among many other benefits. That's fine for the toddler, but what's in it for those who achieved that shoe-tying goal decades ago? Try this: pure and simple relaxation. Had a rough day? Say their names out loud. Go ahead, don't worry -- chances are if someone overhears, he'll recognize you as a fellow Tubbyhead and join in. Ready? Tinky Winky. Dipsy. Laa-Laa. Po. Doesn't your day feel a little brighter already?

The show's format is beyond simple: easy for the adult mind to digest, and a far gentler way to begin the morning than an onslaught of CNN. First, the Teletubbies jump out of their dome-shaped home, cheerily exclaiming, "Eh-oh!" (All speak in varying degrees of baby babble.) Then it's activity time--washing or playing or dancing or eating. If we're lucky, each uses his or her prop: Tinky Winky carries a red bag (and occasionally wears a skirt, fodder for debate on his sexual orientation); Dipsy sports a large black-and-white hat, the envy of Deadheads everywhere; Laa-Laa loves her big orange ball; and littlest Po rides her scooter. Repetition is key to the program--everything is done over and over and over. It's Zen perfection. Soon the windmill beckons: the symbols (triangle, stick, circle, and swirl) on the Tubbies' heads light up, and their television-enhanced bellies begin to glow. Oh, who will be the lucky Tubby who shows today's video? One exclaims in delight, and they all fall to the ground and wriggle as we watch the short film. (There's much falling in Tubbyland--in fact, "Bumps a Daisy" is one of the songs on the soundtrack) Here's where your fast-forward button comes in handy--the videos involve very young children performing some mundane task: washing a dog, Rollerblading, singing songs. Periodically, the sun (a baby's face in the middle of a vividly yellow sun) will appear and react with snickers and whimpers. Beware, though: most adults find the sun frightening--even demonic. No matter how many times you watch the ending, when the reluctant Tubbies must go home but instead defy the narrator by refusing to leave ("Noooooo!"), you'll get an excited chill: which Tubby will lead today's revolt? Maybe this time, they won't go !

Another benefit of the program is learning the dialect. Much adult communication is enhanced by incorporating Tubbyisms into daily speech. Ready to leave that party? A gentle hint to your partner that it's "time for Tubby bye-bye" will quickly have her out the door. Feeling hungry? How about some Tubby Custard or Tubby Toast? Next time you're in the shower, try the cleaning chant, which guarantees the ultimate cleansing experience: "Wash, wash, wash. Wash, wash, wash. Tubby, Tubby, Tubby, Tubby, wash, wash, wash."

So next time it's been a rough day, skip the valerian root. Put down that Scotch on the rocks. Pop in the Teletubbies. And say, "Eh-oh!" Big hug, everybody.

Copyright © 2000, -- Used without permission.

And, if this still doesn't convince you, read this special Web page and then read Benjamin Hoff's The Tao of Pooh and The Te of Piglet. Then you will certainly grok in fullness. And, when you do, you should then put together your own Personal 'Tubby Code!

Caution! if you follow this link you will get a "behind the scenes" glimpse of the Teletubbies set location, the actors, and filming details. I cannot and will not be held responsible for your loosing that "child within" feeling if you go to this page. You Have Been Warned!

Teletubbies program, characters and logo: ® & © 1998 Ragdoll Productions (UK) Ltd. Licensed by The itsy bitsy Entertainment Company. All rights reserved. Neither Ragdoll nor itsy bitsy Entertainment, or The BBC nor PBS have endorsed or support this site. Any trademarked or copyrighted material is used here without permission because they wouldn't answer my e-mail request!

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