Transformers: Earthspark is a new cartoon television series aimed at two-to-11 year-olds. It focuses on a new generation of Transformers – for those familiar with the franchise, this new generation are bots born on Earth after the Autobot-Decepticon war, along with their human families. However, it has sparked outrage after it introduced a character called Nightshade, a non-binary robot.
The new series came out a few months ago, but for some reason there’s only been a meltdown about it on Twitter this week so I decided to review the episode for myself.
The opening scene begins with a fight between Bumblebee, who is an original character in the old franchise, and one of the other robots, who must have been a new addition as I didn’t recognise him. This was a great start and it is what any fan of the franchise would expect to see. A great start, perhaps, but it was all downhill from there.
It switches to a scene where we meet some more characters: Stevie and Robbie in a skateboard park, with Robbie’s two robot sisters. When did the transformers have any sort of relationship with the humans? Even Stevie is confused about the relationship: he says to Robbie: “Your transformers are not like what I have read about”, at which point Robbie replies: “They are not my transformers… they are my family.” Robbie looked upset and annoyed with his friend for suggesting that his robot sisters in any sense belonged to him. (Slavery metaphor alert.)
Later, we meet more characters – Sam and Nightshade, a human and a robot respectively. Sam seems scared of Nightshade, even though the robot has just rescued her, and holds a bag over her face with stickers on the front saying “she/they”. Nightshade speaks first by complimenting her bag, which is followed by: “My pronouns are they/them.” Sam perks up at this point and responds: “Thanks. I’m ‘she/they’… I’m sorry for how I reacted. It’s just sometimes the world can be a scary place. It’s hard to know who’s dangerous or not.” Sam then reassures Nightshade she’s no longer frightened of him now that she knows his pronouns are ‘they/them’: “I know I’m safe when I’m with my friends or other non-binary people.”
So, if a predator or a thief comes up to you in the middle of the street, all you need to say is that you are non-binary and they will immediately become your friend? Odd lesson to be teaching children. Nightshade doesn’t understand what non-binary means and Sam apologises for “assuming”, before patiently explaining what it is. A lightbulb appears: Nighshade realises ‘they’ is non-binary!
After this scene, we see another fight between Bumblebee and someone else; however, the fights are not that serious.They go on for a few seconds, then fade out. It seems like all the programme makers care about is imparting various woke messages, with the fights thrown in to keep the unenlightened child interested before bombarding them with propaganda.
The episode ends with Robbie and his robot ‘sisters’ having a conversation about his non-binary robot friend, whom he urges them to accept.
It’s hard to know where to begin with this nonsense. Why is this messaging, designed to reinforce woke dogma about sex and gender, considered suitable for children as young as two? Won’t it just confuse them? Or lead to them becoming confused about their own supposedly gendered souls? As Ron DeSantis says, who’s just passed a law banning the teaching of gender identity ideology in Florida’s schools, can’t we just let kids be kids? Also, since when do robots have a gender?
I’m 14 and I felt uncomfortable watching this, so God knows how it will make younger children feel. I’m so glad I missed out on being exposed to these confusing messages when I was a pre-teen. I used to watch Peppa Pig, but even that has become a vehicle for progressive propaganda: it has introduced its first same-sex couple — two lesbian polar bears — following years of calls for more LGBTQ+ characters on the show by woke activists.
I feel sorry for the younger generation. They need to be able to grow up normally without worrying about any of this nonsense, just like I did.
I used to love Transformers, but now it’s been ruined, like so many other children’s television programmes. Let’s hope Earthspark is a colossal failure and goes the same way as Bud Light.
Jack Watson has a Substack newsletter called Ten Foot Tigers about being a Hull City fan. You can subscribe here.
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