entertainment

'Peppa Pig' Introduces First Same-Sex Couple In 18-Year History Of The Cartoon

The feature comes two years after a petition by a US-based website that demanded for same-sex parents to be featured on the show.

Cover image via Distractify & NPR

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Legend, national treasure, and beloved global icon Peppa Pig has made waves across the world for toddlers and pre-schoolers since the early 2000s

Since 2004, Peppa Pig has been a television staple in many British, American, Latin-American, and Asian households for toddlers and pre-school goers alike.

Over the years, fans of the character have seen her achieve immense success and broaden her horizons globally. From releasing her own album on Spotify and Apple Music to addressing international controversy when Adele 'declined' to do an album with her, the icon has also been praised by former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson for exemplifying the power of UK creativity.

And as of recent, she has kept on making history.

Image via NPR

For the first time in Peppa Pig history, the cartoon series introduced a same-sex couple in the form of Peppa's friend, Penny Polar Bears' mothers

Airing this past Tuesday, 6 September, on Channel 5 in the UK, the episode that features the mothers is entitled "Families", which centres around Peppa and her friends learning about each others' families.

In the episode, one scene depicts Penny Polar Bear telling Peppa that she has two mummies, and proceeds to draw a picture of herself holding hands with them.

While drawing the portrait, Penny states, "I live with my mummy and my other mummy. One mummy is a doctor and one mummy cooks spaghetti. I love spaghetti." The scene then shifts to all three of them sitting down for a family meal.

Penny Polar Bear and her two mummies.

Image via Channel 5/The Guardian

While the scene made history as the first time the series addressed their relationship status, the two parents have made previous appearances on the show

Doctor Polar Bear was introduced last year in an episode where Peppa has her yearly health check. The whole family was shown later in the episode where Peppa throws a massive party for her pet goldfish. 

There is a brief scene where the two tell Penny to have a lovely time while dropping her off, though their relationship as a romantic couple was never addressed until now.

Image via Channel 5
Image via Distractify

The addition of the LGBTQ+ characters come about two years after a petition called out the programme, demanding for same-sex parent characters

Circulating since 2019, the three-time BAFTA winning series was called out to feature same-sex parents, with the petition garnering almost 25,000 signatures since its release.

In the petition, it was written, "Children watching Peppa Pig are at an impressionable age, and excluding same-sex families will teach them that only families with either a single parent or two parents of different sexes are normal. This means that children of same-sex parents may feel alienated by Peppa Pig, and that other children may be more likely to bully them, simply through ignorance."

Taking this in stride, the series finally made the addition.

The original petition, which is still up on the website.

Image via Care2Petitions

Though the response and fanfare over the news has been mostly positive, certain viewers disagreed with the inclusion of characters in a same-sex relationship

One commenter said that Peppa Pig is no longer a children's show, while another took to express their opinion about making LGBTQ+ relationships visible to younger children.

In their tweet, they said, "I have no problem with LGBT, [but] what I do have a problem with is this sh-t being drummed into them when they're toddlers, stop confusing them and let them be kids."

Image via Twitter
Image via Twitter

However, a slew of other comments came in from those who supported the decision of the show. One user asked why were so many people seething over the news. "Gay people have been on TV for a long time, it's time to stop acting shocked," they opined.

Another user, who is a parent, noted, "My kids saw the first same-sex couple on Peppa Pig and the world didn't end."

Image via Twitter
Image via Twitter

However, one of the most fruitful comments came from a user who explained why the inclusion of two mothers was important for the show. "Because that's the reality for some children and representation matters. The end."

Image via Twitter

What do you think about this decision made by the show? Let us know!

While the UK has been making steady progress, a couple of movies were banned in Malaysia for LGBTQ+ representation:

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