Last week, Muse reported on Disney’s mobilization against Netflix, which is expected to become a frontal assault when the Disney Plus streaming service launches later this year. In Forbes this week, investment analyst Stephen McBride further explained why Netflix is in serious trouble and why Disney remains such a formidable foe as entertainment moves online. One word: content. —L.L.
Public television networks in Alabama and Arkansas refused to air the 22nd season premiere of the children’s cartoon Arthur for its depiction of a same-sex wedding.
The episode that aired nationwide on May 13 and titled “Mr. Ratburn and his Special Friend” centers on Arthur, the anthropomorphic aardvark, and his friends’ discovery that their third-grade teacher, a male rat, is marrying a local chocolatier named Patrick.
“Parents trust that their children can watch APT without their supervision,” Mike Mckenzie, Alabama Public Television’s director of programming, told Al.com. “We also know that children who are younger than the ‘target’ audience for Arthur also watch the program.”
Arthur, intended for ages 4–8, first aired in 1996 with an opening song telling children to “believe in yourself.” In April, Arkansas and Alabama’s public television networks reportedly learned from the show’s producers that the season premiere would feature a same-sex nuptial, prompting both stations to air a rerun instead.
“In realizing that many parents may not have been aware of the topics of the episode beforehand, we made the decision not to air it,” Julie Thomas, marketing director at the Arkansas Educational Television Network, said in a statement.
Meanwhile, a petition to remove the episode by One Million Moms, a division of the American Family Association, has reached nearly 19,000 signers. —Mary Jackson