My childhood is officially over. I’m done with Santa, Action Man, Polly Pocket and Hot Wheels Cars, but especially Postman Pat. He’s changed. It used to be so simple, just me, Jess, Pat and a couple of friendly neighbours. But not any more. He probably thinks that he’s too cool for us now that he has a mobile phone, and a helicopter. Yes, Postman Pat has a helicopter. It’s as if he’s transformed from a postman into THE POSTMAN! Because everything is better when you’re an action hero! THE POSTMAN doesn’t deliver letters by hand any more, that’s not how he rolls. THE POSTMAN shoots them through the letterbox with a bazooka before flying down to earth on Jesspiro, his dragon companion, and proceeding to banish all of the evil ninjas who are trying to prevent the letter’s safe arrival with his magic wand. And then he has a coffee, because some things never change.
Ok, so I may be speaking a bit out of turn. It isn’t that exciting. He just has a mobile phone, a helicopter, a motorbike and some zany new adventures. I suppose that I just have to deal with the fact that Postman Pat is hard-core now. I have to accept that the program makers needed to sex him up to make him into a well cool dude (do eight year olds still say dude? Did eight year olds ever say dude?) I suppose that I’m out of touch with kids. It’s just that I mourn the glory days of children’s television, when fart jokes weren’t the only joke that could be made, when The Queen’s Head (the original series with that blonde girl), Round The Twist and The Demon Headmaster all terrified me. Don’t judge! I was only young!
Nostalgia is an evil thing. Does it really matter that Postman Pat has evolved? After all, he does need to compete with Hannah Montana and Bob the Builder (whose underrated latest single, ‘Big Fish Little Fish’, is a firm fixture on my generic mp3 player). And it’s not like I even watch it even more. Well, not often anyway. My perception of the past is distorted; did I really enjoy the programs themselves, or are my rose-tinted memories a reflection of my environment? Aah! Nostalgia is even making me into a pop philosopher! What’s happening here? All I wanted to do was watch Postman Pat, rekindle warm memories of the past, forget them and then watch the next episode of Lost.
OK. OK. I’m calm. If you want to watch some good TV over Easter, I highly recommend Damages. It’s an awesome lawyer show with Glenn Close and guns in it. That’s a mature, respectable adult program for you. Don’t make the mistake that I did and mosey over to Cbeebies. Not just because the programs are disheartening and rubbish, but because I forced myself to watch Waterloo Road afterwards to ‘cleanse my palette’. Compared to that drivel, THE POSTMAN doesn’t seem that awful…
William Grove is the Boar’s TV columnist