In my ten+ years as a parent to two boys, I can count the parenting successes on two hands. And at the very top would be the fact that neither I nor my kids have ever seen a single minute of either Caillou or Blippi. According to my fellow moms and dads, those two kids’ shows are among the most annoying bits of children’s entertainment there are.
Apparently, Blippi has gotten even worse.
Blippi is something of a sensation, with 12.5 million YouTube subscribers watching the goofily-dressed, insanely upbeat host who explodes with enthusiasm in every video. Only now there’s a new Blippi. And fans are not happy.
Recently, the Blippi Instagram account announced a new YouTube segment called “Learning with Blippi”, in which the original Blippi, Stevin John, would be replaced by a new actor, Clayton Grimm, who has performed as Blippi throughout the Blippi Live stage show tour.
The Instagram post stated that Grimm was coming back as Blippi “due to popular demand” after his successful run on stage. But based on the reaction across social media, the “popular” part may have been exaggerated.
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Grimm is hosting a new “Learn With Blippi” series on YouTube, and the first video already has nearly 1 million views. But the Instagram comments reveal confusion and displeasure.
“No that’s not Blippi and my kid will not allow this,” read one comment.
“I’m sorry, who asked for this?!? Looking at the comments, I say no one did 🤨,” said another parent.
“We 👏🏻 want 👏🏻 the real 👏🏻 BLIP 👏🏻” read another comment.
Moongbug, Blippi’s production company, assured parents that the original Blippi isn’t going anywhere, even while Clayton Grimm’s presence expands.
“Stevin John is the creator of Blippi and acts as the writer and creative force behind the Blippi character,” a statement reads. “Now that Blippi has evolved as a character he is excited that a dynamic stage performer has been cast as Blippi to entertain and thrill audiences across all of the tour markets.”
Before the launch of the live tour, Stevin John himself told Billboard that he can’t be everywhere at once, and Grimm stepping in allows fans to get more Blippi – both on tour and now on YouTube.
“I won’t be on the road, but I am obviously extremely involved with the whole process,” he told Billboard ahead of the last tour. “Blippi is as a character and I’m the creative force behind it, but since YouTube is a monster and all of these platforms are really crazy I can’t go on the road for many weeks or months at a time.”
Sounds like fans won’t be satisfied until John clones himself. I just hope Grimm isn’t taking it too personally.
Check out the Other Blippi in action: