BuzzFeed Australia sent our US colleagues Sam and Kristin a bunch of clips from our favourite childhood TV shows and asked them to share their thoughts. They had a few...
1. Round The Twist
The episode: "Next Time Around", in which Linda hypnotises her brother Pete so that every time someone says "now", he thinks he's a chicken.
Kristin: What does Round the Twist mean?
Sam: Maybe it means they live around the corner? Who the fuck do they live round the twist from? Moby dick?
Kristin: Maybe it's some sort of sailing reference? Like knots and shit?
Sam: Are these the Weasleys?
Kristin: I'm not gonna lie, I honestly have no idea what anyone is saying.
Sam: These are all really attractive people now, WE ARE SURE OF IT!
Sam: This teacher has no control of his classroom, seriously.
Kristin: Is this a show about a kid and his chicken impression? What is this kid's motivation?
Sam: These kids have no chill.
Kristin: I'm beginning to think this kid actually thinks he's a chicken. Wait, did they put a curse on him?
Sam: WHY DID HE MAKE HIM EAT THE SNAILS? WHY?
WHAT IS THE LIFE LESSON HERE?
Kristin: Is no one paying attention to the fact that they have ghosts in their lighthouse?
Sam: What the fuck kind of name is Bronson? Bronson is one of those names where you're popped out of the womb and you're automatically 35 years old.
Kristin: Oh, that's chicken kid's family. OK. I think he actually is cursed. This is not a children's show. Look, I'm not judging you, Australia, but I feel like when you make a kid eat snails you're breaking some child labour laws. Either that, or you just made the most convincing fake snails ever, and you should win some awards.
2. Ocean Girl
The episode: "Tough Decision", the final episode of the first season, where Jason and Brett get their mother to cover up the fact that Neri isn't human, and then say goodbye to her as she leaves with Charlie the whale on his annual migration.
Kristin: Australian kids' TV has no chill.
Sam: These are some classic '90s parenting moves. Blonde kid has got some serious acting chops.
Kristin: Blonde kid does not want to be here.
Sam: Classic mom haircut.
Kristin: This is like the adorable version of Lost. Or reverse The Little Mermaid.
Sam: There's some weird adult-child sexual tension.
Kristin: The adult has more chemistry with Ocean Girl than the actual kid.
Sam: Why is mom wearing a Cleveland Indians hat.
Kristin: So Ocean Girl wants to go back to hang with the whales? She speaks whale? I feel like Ocean Girl taught all the lessons.
(We watch this kiss)
Sam: Ocean Girl was not into that.
Kristin: Yeah, Ocean Girl went in for it and realised that no, she does not like men. She is choosing whales over men... Also, seriously, how does Ocean Girl breathe? Is this like the last episode? Or does she just return to the ocean at the end of each episode?
Sam: Where are these people?
Kristin: IS THIS THE HATCH FROM LOST? Is this actually a Lost spin-off?
Sam: There's no way that's a real whale.
(We watch the intro)
Sam: There's that shot of the whale again.
Kristin: I think they only have four shots of the whale and they just edit them together.
Sam: I don't think she shot with a whale at all.
3. The Genie From Down Under
The episode: "Wishing and Hoping", the first episode where British teenager Penelope discovers an opal necklace and becomes the master of the two Australian genies who live inside it.
Kristin: Wait, is this gonna be an Australian genie?
Sam: Like, what does that mean? Is this a hot surfer? An outback guy?
Kristin: It's an outback guy. This genie is literally an Australian stereotype. Have you no dignity at all, Australia?
Sam: Why is she crying? Is she sad about the necklace?
Kristin: "We're just a couple of genies" OK COOL. COOL EXPLANATION, GUYS.
Sam: Is this Downton Abbey?
Kristin: Is this not set in Australia?
Sam: Is this Australians trolling British people?
Kristin: Are British people just naturally scared of Australian people? Is this that girl's issue? That older lady just announced "There are no Australians here!" like she might say, "There are no rats here!"
Sam: That necklace is like a fucking Horcrux.
Kristin: Why would a genie have a child? Where is its mom? Is this the story of a girl and her magical Australian men?
Sam and Kristin: OMG THOSE ACCENTS ON THE BRITISH CHARACTERS.
Kristin: They talk like Americans trying to make fun of British Accents.
Sam: Maybe Australians making fun of British Accents… You can tell that she's probably super prejudiced against Australians. That's what they're here to teach her about. Are Australians offended by this? Are British people offended by this?
Kristin: This show is basically just to make fun of upper class British people, isn't it?
Sam: That Australian kid is like Ariana Grande, I have no idea what he is saying. He could be saying really dirty shit and I would have no idea.
Kristin: Did he just say, "How could anyone love boobies?" OMG do the genies make magic didgeridoo sounds every time they make magic?
Sam: This is literally offensive to everyone.
(We look up this show)
Sam: Bruce and Baz - these are the most Australian names.
4. Spellbinder: Land of the Dragon Lord
The episode: "Dragon Lord", in which Kathy discovers the leader of the strange land she's been transported to is a despotic young boy.
Sam: OMG it's the hot guy from True Blood.
Kristin: He looks like Dave Coulier there.
Sam: BUT IT GOT BETTER. This is early '90s Game of Thrones meets Power Rangers. THIS IS LITERALLY "TOO MANY COOKS."
Kristin: I think every Australian kids' TV show is literally "Too Many Cooks"… Why is this blonde kid and this lady with a Mormon hairstyle here? Also, uh-oh, there's a kid in charge. There's probably conflict… This is probably way more racist than we even think it is.
Sam: Like, there is racism here that is so high level that it is flying over our heads.
Kristin: This is like Outlander for kids, right?
Sam: Why are we destroying priceless artifacts? What is this teaching anyone?
Kristin: OMG here we go with the white people showing people how to eat stuff.
Sam: Chocolate solves everything.
Kristin: I have a hunch that these two Australian people are never going to get home, but they will LEARN TO LOVE THEIR NEW FOREIGN LAND or something borderline offensive like that.
Sam: This show is moving a little too fast for me
Kristin: Yeah, I legit can't tell if this is set in the future or in the past.
Sam: I don't know, but that kid keeps on teleporting and it is really rude.
Kristin: This kid is a serious problem.
Sam: I like how this looks like it was shot on the biggest budget ever. And by biggest, I mean smallest.
Kristin: This is weirdly real and violent for a kids' show. Are we just gonna murder a bunch of people for funsies?
Sam: Dragon Lord needs some parents.
Kristin: Ugh, is the moral of the story that the white girl is going to change the Chinese kid into a good person? Gross. Gross, kids' TV show.
5. Ship to Shore
The episode: "Worthy Opponents", in which the kids of Circe Island compete in a sports carnival against the cheating Murray River kids - including guest star Heath Ledger.
Sam: (hearing the start of the theme song) WE ARE IN FOR A TREAT.
Kristin: Why are these kids falling all over each other on this beach? Is this about kids who boat? Why are they now wearing colonial costumes?
Sam: I cannot with this music. I know this is about water but that's about it.
Kristin: "Calvin says they're all axe murders!" That sounds about right for what this show seems to be about.
Sam: There's almost too much drama.
Kristin: I think this is a camp or a school. Are they racing?
Kristin: I have no idea what sport is happening right now. There seems to be a lot of talking about sports and not a lot of doing about sports. Is there a swim race? This is the longest sports-related thing I have ever seen that actually had no sports in it? Is that kid running a sports book?
Sam: Yes. And he has an earring in his gay ear. I bet this is the bad kid. He's the evil ginger.
Kristin: There have actually been a lot of evil ginger kids.
Sam: I have no idea what crying the Australians kids are saying. I feel like as a 5-year-old I would be riveted by this, but as an adult, I have no idea what is going on.
Kristin: These people have the thickest accents.
Sam: WAIT, HEATH LEDGER IS IN THIS?
Kristin: AND HE'S PART OF A CHEATING SCANDAL.
6. The Adventures of Blinky Bill
The episode: Rather than a whole episode, Sam and Kristin watched the opening credits, which basically tell the whole story of the show about Blinky Bill and friends rebuilding their homes after their habitat is destroyed.
Kristin: WAIT A SECOND, DID THEY JUST INTRODUCE THAT CHARACTER AS SPLOOGE THE KANGAROO?
Sam: This is already too many names to keep track of.
Kristin: I feel like these animals would not at all be friends in life.
Sam: No, they would eat each other.
Kristin: Do they even normally live in the same places in Australia?
Sam: Is Blinky Bill the Mickey Mouse of Australia?
Kristin: I like how they conveniently leave out all the animals that will kill you?
Sam: Everyone seems oddly OK with the fact that their environment just got wrecked.
Kristin: I feel like this is the most work a koala has ever done.
Sam: Aren't koalas really cranky, too? They are not really good at rebuilding their town, are they? I feel like they get into trouble all the time but conveniently get out of it really easily. That poor old guy is left out. Also, I have no idea what kind of animal it is.
(We look up the show)
Sam: Literally most of Blinky's friends are penis jokes. Nutzy, Splodge, Flap. I am done. Deceased.
The episode: "Plasmo and the Moontower", the very first episode which sees Plasmo and Parsty, two creatures searching for their parents, meet Coredor and Brucho, a pair of intergalactic explorers.
Sam: This is already a horrible nightmare.
Kristin: Dude, I would cry too, if I were in the desert.
Sam: What is going on? I feel like if I were on shrooms this would be entertaining. This is like a nightmare version of Marcel the Shell. Or Gonzo Wallace and Grommit… These look like two plastic chicken nuggets searching for a new life.
(AT THE SAME TIME, when we see the weird beige sharpie-looking character hanging out with the Boba Fett character)
Sam: IT LOOKS LIKE A VAGINA.
Kristin: IT LOOKS LIKE A NUTSACK.
(We proceed to spend the next two minutes arguing with each other about this.)
Sam: Is this Frozen? Why is this snowman here?
Kristin: Oh, you know, it's just Boba Fett and a ball sack looking for treasure, nothing to see here… Those chicken nuggets look even worse without clothes. PUT YOUR CLOTHES BACK ON, NUGGETS. Also, I literally do not know who the aliens are supposed to be here. And why do the chicken nuggets have a pet?
Sam: They're all speaking in weird voices, yet I think I understand them the best out of any characters we've seen speak so far.
Kristin: The chicken nuggets don't have moms? Which I guess makes sense?
Kristin: Did it just end? I have no idea what just happened.
Sam: Why is Nik Nik credited as himself?
8. Johnson and Friends
The episode: "Bringing up Baby", in which MacDuff the accordion and Diesel the truck believe a hammer is their baby, and Johnson has to babysit.
Kristin: Why would anyone make a puppet out of a water bottle?
Sam: This is a Peewee's Playhouse rip off, right?
Kristin: Is that an accordion? What kid plays with an accordion?
Sam: Why would the toys mistake a hammer for a baby?
Kristin: Do these toys have a kid who owns them? Or do they just live alone in this house, for fun? Did they eat their previous owner, or something? WHY IS THE WATER BOTTLE FRIENDS WITH ANYONE? Let alone an elephant.
Sam: "Who wants to babysit a hammer?" That is literally something they just said. Is Johnson supposed to be the Barney of Australia?
Kristin: Is a water bottle a toy in Australia, or something?
Sam: I do not get why a hammer is a character on this show.
Kristin: Why is the accordian going to lunch? WHAT IS IT EATING?
Sam: I'm sensing some homoerotic tension between the water bottle and the elephant. They are the Spongebob and Patrick of Australia. I'm betting some Australian parents probably see this and are not into it.
Kristin: I really wish the water bottle would stop making squishing noises. Like, just as a favour to me. Oh my god.... is that a whole person inside that water bottle? I thought that was a puppet, is that actually A COSTUME?
Sam: How is he not tripping all over everything?
9. Lift Off
The episode: "A Load of Old Rubbish", the first episode, which sees Poss and Kim discover a dirty faceless doll that turns out to be magical, and Mr Fish the caretaker of the apartment building where they live tries to get them to throw it away.
Kristin: That image of that faceless doll is already giving me nightmares.
Sam: Where the hell are these children's parents?
Kristin: Omg nightmare doll! Let's go play with it!
Sam: Happy music, and a very troubling situation. "It's pretty yucky" — it just came out of the damn trash.
Kristin: Oh my god, the DEMON DOLL IS ALIVE. Why are they still playing happy music???
Sam: With giant snakes and crocodiles, maybe an animated faceless doll doesn't seem that scary?
Kristin: LOL, look at all the things these poor kids can't do — no bananas, no sandwiches???
Sam: "What is rubbish?" What a deep question for a three year old!!! Very existential.
Kristin: Demon doll is talking to Beverly, the penis plant with an eye.
Sam: THIS IS A KIDS' SHOW. We literally do not know what just happened. That doll is terrifying. No eyes and no mouth — we think it's possessed, demonic, probably going to kill someone in the third act. Mr. Fish is the ONLY one who has his shit together.
10. Heartbreak High
The episode: Episode 148, in which Anita breaks up with Drazic after he cheats on her with Mai.
Sam: So much '90s angst and we're only 30 seconds in.
Kristin: Lots of white people drama going on here. His eyebrow ring is REALLY distracting.
Sam: It's SO vague what their drama is about. "You're never going to change..." "This was a once-only thing."
Kristin: Heartbreak High is almost a little TOO on the nose for a name. Like, was Hormones High not available?
Sam: Tears... the waterworks! This is like the Dawson and Joey... this must be a really, really big moment??? It feels important!!!
Kristin: Yeah, I get the feeling that this was THE teen couple.
Sam: Also Drazic!!! What a name!!! He looks like early '90s Stefon (Bill Hader's SNL character).
(We google Drazic)
Sam: WOW DRAZIC IS SO HOT NOW. He's got a foreign Matthew McConaughey look going on!!!
11. The Ferals
The episode: "An Explosion of Talent", where the Ferals enter a talent contest and accidentally blow up their new landlord Joe.
Sam: The feerals
Kristin: I think you mean the ferals. Who are these muppets?
Sam: I have questions. Does this happen every episode?
Kristin: OH THE FERALS ARE THE NAME OF THE BAND. CAUSE THEY'RE FERAL ANIMALS.
Sam: I don't understand why this is a children's show because these animals are terrifying. But then again, this is Australia all animals are dangerous.
Kristin: IS THIS SONG CALLED "DO THE RAT?" Are rats the closest thing you have to cuddly animals? Is bra-cat supposed to be the budget Miss Piggy? She sounds like Miss Piggy. These are like, budget muppets. Why are these humans hanging out with these muppets?
Sam: "They're bogans from the bush." We know what that means.
Kristin: I've actually already forgotten.
Sam: I think it's rednecks.
Kristin: His name is Rattus P. Rattus. That is so lazy. I want to know how these university students got roped into caring for muppets. They should be out drinking, not living in a horrible drunk nightmare while totally sober.
Sam: Why are they all injured?
Kristin: Why do all these muppets sound like Dickensian street urchins?
Sam: Everyone on this show needs a show… I need a shower after watching this show. Their eyes are terrifying.
Kristin: Their eyes have no chill.
Sam: Why are they beating each other up?
Kristin: As the credits roll. What we have learned so far is that every Australian kids' show is literally Too Many Cooks.
The episode: The exact episode is unknown, but the clip involved a song called "Walking in the Bush" and a bunch of kids feeding emus.
Sam: This is the Nick face but ten times more terrifying.
Kristin: This is the Nick face, but in drag.
Sam: The voice is on helium?
Kristin: I think that is the best outfit I have ever seen.
Sam: I would never walk in the bush in that outfit. Yeah, that is red carpet ready outfit.
Kristin: You would never walk in the bush period.
Sam: Well yeah.
Kristin: I can't sing along, I don't know the words. I don't think any of the kids know the words.
Sam: I feel like this is some sort of propaganda video. Australians kids have really long attention spans. I lost interest five minutes ago, and this video is five minutes long. I'm waiting for the animals to come up and eat them all.
Kristin: This is like the fireplace channel.
Sam: Those birds are dangerous.
Kristin: Is this a demonstration of what not to do with birds? I feel like that is a public service announcement that they all need. One of these kids needs to die in order to relay the message. It's like a don't drive and text public service announcement. Don't feed the emus or you will die.
Sam: That was like propoganda or something.
(We look up this show)
Sam: I would never let my preschooler watch this show. "This show is best remembered for this face."
Kristin: How could you forget it?
Sam: The face lady is now a part of a ukele duo called Ukelicious, and they tour old folks homes I love it.
Kristin: The things we do for money.