What animal more appropriate to burst out talking when he or she wants to know what is going on in the human world?
Long before Stan, Disney’s current talking dog, there was Wishbone, the pooch that endeared himself to countless children.
A WRITER who identified herself in 2001 as The Ultimate Pixy, wrote about becoming hooked on this show in third grade instantly, after seeing a poster of the dog in her library.
“The first reason I watched it was because its star is a dog, and I was and still am obsessed with dogs.
“I watched it every afternoon while I did my homework, and I knew more and more literature classics. I would know the plot of a book by heart, even some books that even my parents hadn’t read!!
“Instead of plodding around with Barbies and hairbows like most girls my age were, I spent my time at the library, thirsty to read the full versions of the books acted out on the show. . .
“Wishbone taught me a lot! It whetted my interest in reading. Before I watched the show, the most advanced book I had was a dumbed down version of The Prince And the Pauper. But imagine me, as a fourth grader, reading Pride And Prejudice and understanding it completely. . .
“And the greatest thing about Wishbone was it didn’t hold back. Disney movies often take a story, and soften it up for the younger audience. Wishbone, however, did the book to the fullest and most accurate extent it could in its 30- minute time slot.
“A good example is a Tale Of Two Cities. A guy volunteers to give his life so the woman he adores can spend her life with the convicted person she loves! I cried when I saw this, but that’s not a bad thing. It made me go out and read the book.”
NEWEST addition to the Disney lineup of sitcoms is called Dog With A Blog. First it was Air Bud, the dog who could play basketball. Now there is a dog that actually has its own online blog. Bloggers have come into the American culture as a recognizable force, so why not add a dog to the mix?
The background story is this: A psychologist father has a child and step-child, Avery and Tyler Jennings, and they can’t get along. At all. So, he buys them a dog, named Stan, to keep them from fighting and to actually help the two get along. However, the dog can talk. And, of course, blog. The kids do know that the dog can talk, but they have to keep it a secret, for fear that the dog will be sent back to the shelter if their parents learn the dog can talk.
WE NEVER learn how or why Stan can blog. And one wonders if people under the age of 20 (which of course, is the target audience group) even know what a blog is?
During the pilot episode, Stan only appears in two small scenes blogging. Stan’s blog is like a blog for moms, only it’s a blog for other pets. Stan discusses his owners, and offers reviews on animal products.
The show is filled with jokes and antics about kids trying to get away with keeping things from their parents But, there are some good messages about family bonds and the joy of having a pet.