By: Lauren Hufford
This probably shows you how young I am, but I remember watching Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood on my way to kindergarten. His show was not just about learning to count or the letters of the alphabet, but more about emotional issues and real problems children face. For instance, when Mister Rogers’ goldfish died, he didn’t just replace it with an identical one, but talked to his viewers about death – pretty heavy hitting for a children’s show, I know.
While Mister Rogers’ show ended in 2001, the concept of his show wasn’t forgotten and the Fred Rogers Company decided to bring back the ideas and characters we love in Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. This new show is animated and the main characters are the next generation of kids from the Land of Make-Believe. Daniel Tiger is Daniel Striped Tiger’s son, Prince Wednesday is the second son of King Friday XIII and Queen Sarah Saturday. O the Owl is X the Owl’s nephew, Henrietta Pussycat’s daughter is Katerina Kittycat and Miss Elaina is Lady Elaine’s daughter. The concepts and execution are very similar between the new and old shows. Music is used to reinforce the ideas presented throughout the episode and the most memorable moments of the show – like Mr. Rogers putting on his sweater and shoes – are still in each episode. The spirit of Mr. Rogers really lives on in the new series.
I would highly recommend any parent start their preschoolers on this show. Not to mention Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood LIVE: King for a Day! is coming to Miller Auditorium on Saturday, January 20, 2018 at 2 p.m. Single tickets are on sale now! We look forward to celebrating the spirit of Mr. Rogers with Daniel Tiger in January.