BING the most popular kids show during lockdown!? (..saw this headline and thought I’d share a snippet of this bit from #ManVsToddler.)
“The main character in Bing is a massive-headed rabbit in dungarees, who constantly fucks everything up and then whinges about it as though it wasn’t his fault in the first place. (That’s the entire premise.)
The other main character is Flop, Bing’s guardian. It is not clear whether he is Bing’s father, nanny, babysitter, social worker, parole officer or lodger, but basically it is Flop’s responsibility to be Bing’s guide as he ballses up pouring a drink or colouring inside lines and then moans about it for the rest of the episode.
I understand why parents can’t stand Bing Bunny. But if I’m honest it is Flop who I consider the most infuriating character on kids’ TV. I think he’s supposed to represent the perfect parent, Flop never gets irritated, never ever raises his voice. But his response to Bing’s overall shitness is so incredibly calm that it is just odd. He has the unnatural calmness of somebody who is taking the edge off of things by quietly drinking all day:
– ‘Oh no, look, Flop, I’ve set fire to the curtains!’
– ‘Oh, never mind, Bing Bunny, I’ve been drinking sambuca since half eight. I couldn’t really give a fuck.’
If Flop isn’t a drinker then that’s even more concerning. Because, his unnerving calm suggests he may be a dangerous sociopath.
There’s a bit in Silence of the Lambs when Lecter bites a guard’s nose off and the entire time his heart rate never goes above ‘resting’. And Flop has that same freakish calm about him, regardless of what Bing’s done. Admittedly, the things he does aren’t that bad but I can easily imagine an episode in which Bing goes on a murderous rampage, stacking up the bodies on the coffee table, and Flop moseying in with a cup of tea in one hand: ‘Never mind, Bing Bunny, it’s just a little mess, let’s get cleaned up shall we?’
Murder: it’s a Bing thing.
There are so many unanswered questions…
I have no idea what Flop is?? OK, Bing is a balls-dim rabbit, but Flop is some sort of cross between a sock-puppet, a door stop and a knitted ball-sack. In fact, all the adults in Bing are the same – like freakish misshapen cuddly toys – whereas all the kids are recognisable animals like elephants and pandas.
And Bing is so much bigger than Flop. Which gives the impression that Bing isn’t a child at all but actually a huge, dumb, hulking adult like Lennie from Of Mice and Men. All well and good until you piss the big idiot off and he snaps your neck like a fucking twig.
And why does no one mention the fact that Bing’s mate Pando the panda takes his trousers off at every opportunity? My uncle Martin used to do the same, but that’s only because in the late seventies he hit a tree on his moped and had a metal plate put in his head, he did all kinds of mad shit.
..I think the main reason why so many parents hate Bing though, is back where we started, with Bing’s incessant whining. The fact is, if you’re a mum or dad, you already have at least one little person in your house, in real life, wandering about making a mess of shit and moaning about it. The last thing you need is another one broadcast into your living room every day as bloody entertainment.”
Man vs Baby’s Matt Coyne is from Sheffield, South Yorkshire. In September 2015, Matt’s life was turned upside down by the arrival of his son Charlie. After three months of parenthood, he logged on to social media and wrote a viral post about his experience of having to live with ‘a furious, sleep-murdering, unstable and incontinent, breasts-obsessed midget lodger’.
Following this, Matt created Man vs Baby, which now has over 360,000 followers. And has written two Sunday Times bestselling books based on his parental triumphs and disasters, the first entitled: ‘Dummy’ and the second ‘Man vs Toddler’.
He has also written for The Guardian, The Telegraph and GQ Magazine.
Matt lives in Sheffield with his son Charlie, his partner Lyndsay and a Jack Russell terrier with ‘issues’ called Eddie.