I have spent a lot of time with the Wiggles over these past weeks, as Ivy's obsession is pathological. I like them, generally, although their cast , in true Aussie fashion, is almost entirely male, and their eternal joie de vivre borders on the psychotic.
Ivy isn't alone in her obsession, and her passion is shared by many, many little one I know. The Wiggles know it too. Their merchandising machine is on overdrive, and they work those toddlers from every angle they can. Toys. DVDs. Books. Juice. Nappies. Pencils. Tractor equipment. Camel-muzzles. Denture paste.
I wouldn't mind quite so much if they weren't such crappy products, so obviously hoisted onto the markey to diddle parents out of a baby bonus that would have better spent on a plasma screen. But the books are littered with typos, the food is packed with chemicals and sugar and the nappies are disposable.
What'a a mum to do when caving under the pressure but buy a doll, a Murray doll, that won't rot brains or teeth but might at least inspire some creative imagination?
It's another toss-up of principles, and I'm pretty sure the loser is logic. No Barbies for you, Ivy. But yes, you can have a figure of a middle-aged man with a Tandoori tan and hair by Loreal (Copper Collection), and take him to bed every night.