Buzzing with Kat and Matt
The interracial couple, Harold and Howard McBride (voiced by Wayne Brady and Michael McDonald), are first seen taking their son Clyde to a sleepover. Just before the couple appeared, Lincoln Loud (the show’s main character) says, “This is it. It’s time to make history”. A clip of the scene can be found here.
While Nickelodeon and Loud House have received high praise across social media, there was at least one conservative group, One Million Moms, calling for a boycott and demanding that the same sex couple be removed. They also accuse the network of being part of an agenda that is trying to desensitize children & families.
It also turns out that the show will not air on Viacom International Media Networks’ feed in most of Africa. This is due to broadcasting laws prohibiting same sex couples or any types of homosexuality from appearing on the air.
Kat’s Take: I commend Nickelodeon for taking this huge step in their programming. I am also happy to see all of the support surrounding the network and Loud House. We have made great strides in this country for LGBTQIA equality, but we still have a ways to go. We also have much more work to do worldwide. I think it is important that children continue to see themselves & their families represented in the media. I also appreciate that the McBrides’ appearance was normalized and not made into a huge deal.
Matt’s Take: Bravo to Nickelodeon for not only including the characters in the show, but also for making them normal, everyday people. Visibility is one of the strongest weapons we have in the fight for acceptance, and it’s important to continue showing that same-sex couples raise their children just like any other parents. It’s really unfortunate that the episode won’t be shown in some countries where the message of acceptance is truly needed the most, and it’s a somber reminder that for as far as we’ve come in the fight for equality, there is still so much more work to be done.
That’s it for this week! We’ll see you on the next Kieron Richardson Show!
July 20th was a historic day for the kids cable channel, Nickelodeon. The network introduced its first same sex married couple on the new animated series, Loud House. The interracial couple, Harold and Howard McBride, are first seen taking their son Clyde to a sleepover.
Harold and Howard are voiced by actor-comedians Wayne Brady and Michael McDonald. According to Variety, there was no fanfare or fuss about the appearance of the couple in the episode titled “Overnight Success”, just a focus on the protective nature of the parents. The network received a lot of high praise on social media for taking such a huge step in children’s programming.
Loud House, which premiered on May 2, 2016, centers around an 11-year-old boy named Lincoln Loud who lives with his 10 sisters.
A clip showing the introduction of the McBrides can be found here.
Unfortunately, there was a bit of an uproar from the conservative group One Million Moms. According to On Top Magazine, the group has encouraged their members to contact Nickelodeon and demand that the gay couple be removed from the show. They also plan to boycott the network in order to “avoid previews, reruns and commercials for this irresponsible episode”. The group also feels that the network is part of an agenda trying to desensitize children and families.
There has been a great outpouring of support for Nickelodeon and Loud House. Something of this nature would never have been possible 5-10 years ago. Thankfully the tide toward equality for the LGBTQIA community is continually going in the right direction.
Unfortunately, it turns out that most of Africa may never see the historic episode. Viacom International Media Networks, which distributes the show overseas, confirmed to South African news outlet Channel24 that the episode would not air on their African feed.
The problem is that Viacom only has one feed that serves the entire continent, and several African countries have broadcasting laws prohibiting same-sex couples or any depiction of homosexuality from appearing on-air. Which means that even though the country of South Africa doesn’t have these laws — and legalized gay marriage in 2006 — they’re still being subjected to censorship laws from other African countries.
This news comes at a time when censorship has become a hot topic in South Africa. The country’s major public broadcaster, SABC, recently announced they would no longer show footage of violent protests taking place in the country, and dismissed seven journalists who spoke out against the decision. After a flurry of legal battles, the network reversed its decision and reinstated the employees. In addition, shows such as E! Entertainment’s I Am Cait and Discovery Network’s I Am Jazz, both of which follow the lives of transgendered people, have been pulled from the air.
Critics of Viacom’s decision argue that by not airing the episode, they convey the message that there’s something wrong with gay couples raising a child and that it is something that should be hidden — which is actually the kind of thinking that the show set out to disprove in the first place. One small consolation is that Viacom has made the episode available for South Africans to stream on the internet as well as their catch-up services.