Tuesday, 28 March 2017

someplace-else or boomerang toomerang soomerang

Once believed lost to history, someone or some cosmic force uploaded episodes of the so called “conflict series” of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood that aired in November 1983 as Cold War tensions were at their height and nuclear war looked like an eminent consequence.
The Public Broadcasting System asked Mister Rogers to present an allegory that young children might better understand the factors driving escalation—without scaring the wits out of them and countering a commercial broadcast of the ominously titled The Day After (I vaguely remember watching all these shows), by having King Friday XIII and Queen Sara Saturday and Prince Tuesday grow increasingly paranoid.  The royal family worried that the Neighborhood of Make-Believe was under threat by another kingdom (Some- place-Else, I think, where Donkey Hodie lives and his majesty the prince attended boarding school) who seemed to be undergoing a major shift in industrial activity and thus raids the treasury to build up the Neighborhood’s defences (formerly, they were a rocking chair-based economy)—eventually bankrupting Lady Elaine Fairchilde, Daniel Striped Tiger, Henrietta Pussycat and the rest in addition to paralysing them with fear. Eventually the king realises the error of his ways and discovers that the rival kingdom was putting forth so much effort investing in infrastructure—building bridges rather than bombs.