Forget Peppa Pig, Justin’s House and Strange Hill High, retro children’s TV is really where it’s at.
Whether you fancy a comforting walk down memory lane (who are we to judge? Grown-up telly can get a bit much at times…) or want to show your kids what they are missing. Here’s where to catch up on some kids TV greats…
Hello everybodeeeeeeeee! Big Bird, Elmo and Cookie Monster are on hand to take your little ones through the numbers and the alphabet via some puppet-themed fun. These episodes see A-listers like Emma Stone and David Beckham make cameo appearances too. Something for the grown-ups, eh?
Barney and Friends – available on Netflix
Fancy introducing the giant purple dinosaur to your kids? Who better to teach lessons of friendship, sharing, kindness and forgiveness – dinosaurs were known for their gentle ways, weren’t they? Plus we can all remember THAT song. Don’t pretend you can’t, or I’ll start singing it and you’ll never get it out of your head…
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers – available on Netflix
Go go Power Rangers! Which colour did you want to be? For me it was always a toss up between yellow and pink. See if the years have you leaning towards a different shade. Perhaps formal black is a more fitting suit-colour now you’ve well and truly left your school days behind…
Tommy, Chuckie, Phil, Lil and Angelica can be your playmates once more on LOVEFiLM instant and Netflix. The tot cartoon ran for 13-years before producers called it a day. If you get bored of milk and nappies, you can fast forward 10 years to the series spin off and see the chums when they are all growed up.
Who doesn’t have memories of charming and cheeky penguin Pingu? His cute cry of ‘Pingu!’ could still be heard on BBC2 until 2006, now you can catch up with Pingu, Pinga and the gang on VOD.
Thomas the Tank Engine – available on LOVEFiLM and Virgin Media
Hurry, hurry, hurry! Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends are busy scooting around the island of Sodor. Remeber the fat controller and evil Diesel? We can’t promise the tales of leaves on the line will amuse you as much as they once did, but they are most definitely classic stories your kids will adore.
Hey Arnold – available on LOVEFiLM
Remeber 9-year-old New Yorker Arnold and his gang of fourth-grade misfits? With his strange-shaped head and Helga’s monobrow, they might have seemed like odd leads for this children’s animation but we loved them all the same. And you can still love them. It’s fine. LOVEFiLM understands.
Here we have it. An entertaining show about a happy-go-lucky Welsh fellow, which also teaches children about the dangers of fire. What more could you possibly want? It’s even got a catchy theme tune. Fireman Sam has been saving lives since 1985 but the fire-fighter looks a little different nowadays. If you prefer your characters a bit more stop-motion, relive the good old days On Demand.
Ellie is an entertainment, TV and film journalist writing news and (hopefully incredibly witty) comment for RadioTimes.com. She loves light-hearted dramas and glossy US series - and is more than a little bit obsessed with Downton Abbey. Foodie, sun-seeker and aspiring novelist in her own time. Likes the fact that her name rhymes with telly.