Children’s shows hold a special place in our hearts. Some are silly, some are sweet, some are educational, and others — like my daughter’s favorite — are comprised entirely of farts. (Literally. My kid likes to watch a slapstick-style short that is nothing but poop/fart jokes.) But every once in awhile, a children’s show comes along that has the power to shape an entire generation; Hulu’s newest program may do just that. We’re so, so excited for the cartoon The Bravest Knight, which will feature same-sex parents.
The forward-thinking animated series — based on Daniel Errico’s 2014 book The Bravest Knight Who Ever Lived — follows the life of pumpkin-farmer-turned-knight Sir Cedric (voiced by T.R. Knight). Cedric is happily married to Prince Andrew (Wilson Cruz), and the two dads are working hard to raise their 10-year-old adopted daughter, Nia (Storm Reid). Nia, meanwhile, is on her own journey toward knighthood. And while it’s amazing that The Bravest Knight will be the first children’s television series to feature openly gay main characters, the show’s star gay dads are also part of a mixed-race family. Which means we have a powerful heroine of color that so many girls have been waiting for.
The decision to create such a family is not without controversy. A particularly gross 2017 PJ Wire article implored Hulu users to cancel their subscriptions. According to the author, Megan Fox, “four [is] a little young to be discussing sexual politics.” But while it’s a shame that — in 2019 — a cartoon depiction of a happy, loving family can be dismissed as “sexual politics,” comments like that prove why representation matters. Diversity should be a given; “different” families should just be the norm. And they can be — with honesty, empathy, transparency and representation.
So be sure to check out The Bravest Knight when it debuts on June 21. Your kids will probably learn something, and you may too.