My readers may have noticed that this has become the most sporadic of my columns—the one I’m most likely to say, “Eh, I don’t have it in me right now.” I’ve missed the regular Wednesday one perhaps two or three times in Solute history, and I’ve loaned out the other columns a few times. I missed last month’s Camera Obscura because I didn’t allow myself time to get through a movie and book I hadn’t watched or read yet. But in the last year or so, there have been several occasions when I wasn’t sure I could say anything new about what the kids were watching.
There are several reasons for this. One is that my kids are both in full-time school now. I’ve been doing the column for five years, and in the first article image, you can see Sandy as a baby. Zane was still in preschool. Today, they’re both home, because it’s spring break. But on Monday, Zane goes back to fourth grade and Sandy to kindergarten. This means that I don’t have as much time watching everything they do, because they aren’t home to watch as much TV. What’s more, we bought a house three years ago this month. A much bigger space. Last week, I bought a third TV (you can help me afford a Blu-Ray player for it by supporting my Patreon or Ko-fi!), meaning I can watch what I want, their dad can watch what he wants, and the kids can fight it out in the living room.
The kids are also older. I will still keep half an eye on what they’re watching until they are actual adults, because I worry about things like the alt-right pipeline for my son, but since he’s already expressed concern at a video a friend was watching that seems aimed toward that, I worry less about him. And, sure, Sandy’s still six, and I do keep an eye on age-appropriate there. But both kids have a pretty good sense of what they’re allowed to watch and why, and this is one of the places neither seems inclined to push much in the way of boundaries. In fact, most of what they do it with is stuff I’d let them get to eventually anyway.
I know they watch things with their dad; they watch Owl House with him and not with me and because of that I haven’t gotten around to it even though by all accounts it is fantastic. There are a few shows one or the other has gotten into that I couldn’t make myself watch enough of to have an informed opinion, something I go out of my way to do for this column. Which is another issue—we’ve basically run through the stuff I hate enough to write about that I can be intelligent about. “Oh, Christ, this again; take it to the other room” is not a column.
So we have run through five years of seeing what my kids watch. I may revisit the column now and again, if there’s something I particularly love or particularly hate that they’re watching a lot of. Or I may go back to the occasional rant for a Wednesday morning. But by and large, I’d like to thank you for taking this journey with me. We’ll let the kids keep going on this path alone.