What Would TV Do? Childhood Icons
Laurel Brown
Laurel Brown
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
Life is complicated. TV can help. "What Would TV Do?" attempts to explore life's mysteries, problems and everyday situations with the assistance of the life lessons offered by television.

In this cold, cynical world, it's sometimes nice to think back to our more innocent days. Sunny days, which swept the clouds away, filled with butterflies in the sky. Ah...

Those days may indeed be gone, but TV can show you how you can get them back. It may be only for a little while, but television has the key to remembering and treasuring the best of childhood icons.

What would TV do?

Randomly insert Muppets into reality television.
TV knows that you like the Muppets. Because you do. Everyone likes the Muppets. Just go with it. And that fondness for fuzzy puppets explains why you're likely to see the critters on all sorts of television.

Want to mix some nostalgia with overwhelming sentiment? Have Kermit, Miss Piggy and the like help build houses (and dreams, of course) on Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.

Too sweet for your tastes? Then maybe Cookie Monster randomly showing up to sing Christmas carols on Saturday Night Live would be better for you.

Are you all about competition? Sesame Street characters judging cookies on Top Chef can mix that competitive spirit with pure kiddie joy!

Offer a lesson in exactly what happens if your childhood really does come back.
We may think we want to relive our childhood, but TV knows better.

After all, could any of us fail to be creeped out if a genial man came into our homes, removed his shoes and asked to be our neighbor? Wouldn't we think drugs were at work if Teletubbies suddenly descended upon us?

Television knows how it is. As it showed us, during this week's Community, the return of childhood into our lives brings nothing but shock and disappointment. Why else would Reading Rainbow's Levar Burton inspire so much angst and catatonia in Troy? The young man simply couldn't face the horrors of his childhood icon in the flesh.

Kill off the icon in a gruesome, bloody manner.
When it comes down to it, television is cruel to the concept of childhood. How else can you explain CSI's recent murder of tween idol Justin Bieber? Why else would the small, perfect-haired one fall prey to the policemen's bullets, if not to torture the minds of thousands upon thousands of shrieking girls?

Check it out, if you don't believe me:

True cruelty there.

Are you feeling nostalgic for childhood now? Looking for another walk down memory lane? TV can probably take care of that for you. Just be careful what you wish for, because television does have a way of screwing with even the fondest of childhood memories.

(Images and video courtesy of NBC, ABC, Bravo and CBS)